Lane Mathews

Build your own boat for the Golden Swimming Pool’s annual cardboard boat race

Costumes and creativity are encouraged, and there may just be a few different race categories based on who comes out to participate.

As operations at the Golden Pool wind down for the season, it’s time to rock the boat with the third annual Build Your Own Cardboard Boat contest on Saturday, Aug. 27 at the Golden Swimming Pool (GSP).

Recreation Services Co-ordinator Kim Bryan encourages residents to come out for this popular event that will see cardboard boats of all sizes vie to be the first to cross the finish line.

“This event is so fun,” says Bryan. “It’s held on one of the last full days of pool operations, so come and end the summer with a big soggy bang.”

Boats can be big and intimidating to scare off the competition or smaller – which may not be as stable, but may be quicker in the water. The event will start off with a few heats to see whose craft is worthy of the high seas.

“Last year, the GSP team built the most epic boat! It was huge, double-hulled and sturdy. So sturdy, in fact, that we did five about five laps, each time picking up another kid to join us. So we had about five people in that boat before it sunk,” Bryan said.

Costumes and creativity are encouraged at the event and there may just be a few different race categories based on who comes out to participate.

“People can make their boats and costumes as ridiculous as possible, but all racers have to be in the craft. No outrigging swimmers aloud,” said Bryan.

To participate, the only requirement is to have your boat built ahead of the race start time of 4:30 p.m. There will be building sessions at the Golden Youth Centre on August 24, between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m., and one onsite session at the pool from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on the day of the race. Only cardboard and duct tape is allowed to build your boat. Paint is ok but must be cured 48 hours in advance.

Bryan stresses that racers may only use standard paddles, no kayak paddles.

“This means you Manager of Recreation Services!” exclaimed Bryan. “It’s important that no matter who comes out for the race, we have to beat the Manager of Recreation Services.”

The race begins on Saturday, Aug. 27 at 4:30 p.m. Be sure to head down to the Golden Pool from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. if you need time to build your boat!