Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Rowing Regatta and National Boat Building Challenge Belfast

 My hometown of Belfast had another fine activity this past weekend..

The National Boat Building Challenge..

As the name states..the concept is simple:
" Teams of two build the same skiff design. They are graded on time of build, quality of workmanship, and speed on the water against each other. These are real boats and the competition is open to all, housing contractors, plumbing inspectors, paper-pushers, professional wooden boat builders, and general lay-abouts."

So I decided to check out the contest. Now I'm not sure if I missed most of the action or if there was a small turnout this year but I only saw 2 or 3 boats being built under the tent and no finished products. Perhaps they were undergoing sea trials and were displayed on Sunday ..

There was also a rowing regatta with a half dozen entries..The boats, or Cornish rowing gigs,  have a crew of 6 rowers and a coxswain and are roughly 30 feet long. There were also 2 gigs that had an all female crew. There were  2 teams from Belfast, 3 teams from Plymouth MA, a team from Gloucester MA and a team from Buzzard's Bay.  Call it home field advantage if you will, but the gig "Belle Fast" came in first , a full 20 seconds over a gig from Plymouth and the Belfast women's gig beat out the arch rival women's gig from Plymouth.

I've got to hand it to the organizers of this event and the other summer events in the "olde town" this summer..they sure have had Belfast buzzin'!

These gigs were pushing off from area that the old Boston / Eastern Steamboat Wharf was located..sadly the deteriorated, broken down pilings are all that remain.. .


  1. I've wanted to check this out for the past few years, life sort of gets by me during the summertime. However, Belfast is a fun city and I do enjoy that restaurant on Main Street with the bar out back. Great spot for breakfast.

  2. DEDH..Yes Belfast has come a long way since the days when the chicken factories were pumping "chum" into the harbor..but..the striper and bluefish fishing was awesome back then! Let me know if you ever are in town and we can check out that bar..er..restaurant.