Cardboard boat race takes over Chaumont Bay

Published: Aug. 27, 2022 at 5:52 PM EDT
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CHAUMONT, New York (WWNY) - Five boats, five captains, and one unique material. August 27th marked the Watertown Lions Club’s first ever cardboard boat race.

“We thought it’s nothing that’s been done around here. It’s completely new and different, why not give it a shot?” said Watertown Lions Club President Karen Strife.

Building the boats was a team effort, but when it came to the race itself, all eyes were on the young captains and their oars.

“The kids got involved and took the boats out. They did their best,” said Strife.

Although all vessels were seaworthy. Some like Beckett’s Buccaneer unfortunately met their fate in the water of Chaumont Bay.

“I’m so glad that I came, and I got the Titanic Award, which means the best sinking ship,” said Beckett Hoselton.

With Beckett out of the picture, the race eventually came down to a battle between siblings Austin and Emma Bence. Emma was able to squeak out a narrow victory and stay dry.

“I had a lot of fun, but I did get lucky out there,” said Emma Bence.

All of that fun went to a good cause. The race played double duty as a fundraiser to help the Lions Club with it’s work on helping the blind, fighting hunger, diabetes, and environmental issues.

“So we’ve got those focuses that we concentrate on,” said Strife.

This time around, they were able to raise almost $3,000. Organizers hope they can double that if the event picks up steam next year.

“We’re hoping that next year will be bigger and better. Invite everybody to come float their boat,” said Strife.

A little ingenuity with a lot of duct tape rowing towards a good cause.