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Annual cardboard regatta is on

WATKINS GLEN—Even third graders at Watkins Glen are preparing for the 19th Annual Waterfront Festival’s cardboard boat regatta, Saturday, June 20.
The third graders held their own cardboard boat regatta, Friday, June 12 in the high school swimming pool. Almost 100 students in 19 boats raced as they were cheered on by family members and other grade levels filling the spectator seats. Fiona Gibson, Watkins Glen teacher, said this was the seventh year the third graders have done it. She attributed it to her own experience in the Waterfront Festival’s regatta.
“I thought, ‘if I can do it, they can do it,’” she explained, adding it is something the students now look forward to every year.
While the students had fun with the races, even those that in boats that sunk, the event is tied into the curriculum covering math, science and engineering. Gibson said the students learned about displacement in the science lab. They even went to the bus garage to learn about designs. Then the students built their boats with cardboard donated by U.S. Salt, with none sinking until the third race. The day before the race, Watkins Glen Promotions gave all the third graders shirts for the regatta.
The Waterfront Festival itself starts Saturday at 9 a.m., with the “blessing of the fleet” at 10 a.m. in Seneca Harbor Park. The parade is at noon, starting at Fifth Street, turning North on Decatur and move across Route 414 down Decatur into Seneca Harbor Park. The regatta starts at 2 p.m., after boat inspections at 1 p.m. From 4 to 6 p.m. there will be music and entertainment. There is no admission and parking is free.

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