Cardboard regatta set to cast off Aug. 4 at Blades marina

Competitors paddle toward the finish in a past Cardboard Regatta at the marina in Blades.

BLADES – The fifth annual Recycled Cardboard Boat Regatta will cast off Saturday, Aug. 4 at the Nanticoke River Public Marine Park in Blades.

Sign-in and registration begin at 11 a.m. Judging of boat appearances begins at noon. Races will start at 12:30 p.m.

The regatta is presented by the Town of Blades in conjunction with the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control’s Division of Watershed Stewardship’s Reclaim Our River Program, Delaware Nature Society’s Abbott’s Mill Nature Center and the Nanticoke River Sail & Power Squadron.

The Recycled Cardboard Boat Regatta is open to anyone who’s willing to build a boat from recycled cardboard and paddle it approximately 200 yards to the regatta finish line.

First-place awards will be given for winners of races in five categories: individual, youth, teens, family, and organizations or businesses.

Special awards will be given for “Pride of the Fleet,” “Most Whimsical Boat,” and “Team Spirit.” Also, spectators will be asked to pick a “People’s Choice” award winner, while a special “Titanic Award” will be given for the “Most Dramatic Sinking!”

Regatta registration fees are $20 per entry before July 28, and $30 per entry from July 29 to Aug. 4. Participants can also register the day of the event.

Boats may be any size, shape or design, but must be made of recycled cardboard. Boats should be painted with multiple coats of any one-part polyurethane or enamel paint. Boat decorations may be removed after judging, and prior to the race start.

Participants are encouraged to challenge others to race in the Recycled Cardboard Boat Regatta for one-on-one bragging rights. After all the races are completed, skippers of cardboard boats may challenge another skipper and their boat to a race. Both challengers pay a $15 fee for a challenge race, and challenges can only be issued between cardboard boats entered in the same regatta categories.

The event also includes music, food, and beverages and opportunities to learn from the Reclaim Our River (ROR) partnership about how to protect Delaware’s waterways. The ROR-Nanticoke Series is devoted to bringing monthly events, workshops, and recreational activities to the Nanticoke Watershed. The series offers participants fun opportunities to connect with Delaware’s waterways and provides important information on water quality that can help in protecting aquatic resources.

The ROR partnership also welcomes event sponsors, with proceeds going toward event costs, river restoration, and water quality education. Sponsorships begin at $50.

To register for the event, and for rules and other information, please visit

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