Ride the South Cape trolley to the Cardboard Boat Regatta
Get ready to make a splash this weekend, as the Cape Coral Cardboard Boat Regatta returns for another year of wacky nautical high jinks on the high seas.
Moved from last year’s location of Seahawk Park to easier-to-access Four Freedoms Park in downtown Cape, this year’s event has expanded to include two days of fun.
Event Chair Bob Gaglio said the change of venue and added day was to really drive people into the downtown corridor, and to create the kind of atmosphere that surround regional events such as the sandcastle competition on Fort Myers beach.
Gaglio was busy Friday putting the finishing touches on the weekend’s festivities. Friday acted as the Regatta’s opening ceremonies, with live music and boat displays, which gave builders the opportunity to show off their handiwork.
“Things are going great,” Gaglio said. “Everything is really coming together great. We already have some boats up.”
Many of the boat building clubs put hours and hours of work into constructing their elaborate floats.
One of the most storied boat building clubs are the Merry Mariners. Their entry this year is themed after submarine car from the James Bond film “The Spy Who Loved Me.”
Not only did the Mariners put more than 650 man hours of labor into the construction, many of the club’s members will be dressing as famed characters from the films.
With all that work, the added day really gives the club the chance to display their work for longer.
“I think the additional day is great because when it was one day everything seemed so rushed,” said Mariners Vice-Commodore Bob Purrone. “With the added day, it really opens it up to more people.”
Boat viewing opens at 9 a.m. today, and runs through 2 p.m. The races kick off at 11 a.m. and continue through 2 p.m., with winners and award ceremony immediately following.
Parking is available on the west side of Sunset Towers along Cape Coral Parkway. Additional and suggested parking is at various locations throughout downtown, with continuous free trolley rides for the duration of the event and into the evening for those who want to stay and see what the Cape’s downtown has to offer.