A few got “that sinking feeling” before leaving the dock, while others capsized along the course. But some of the 23 vessels competing in Sunday’s Schooner Wharf Minimal Regatta intrepidly stayed afloat and showed their seafaring spirit.
Rules of the offbeat regatta required each team to build a boat from a sheet of 4-by-8-foot plywood, two 8-foot-long 2-by-4s, a roll of duct tape and a pound of fasteners.
With minimal materials and maximum inventiveness, they definitely “made a splash” in front of spectators gathered to watch the fun. Now in its 27th year, the maritime merriment took place off the Schooner Wharf Bar in the Key West Historic Seaport.
Teams’ “designated crews” were charged with keeping their vessels afloat long enough to complete the regatta’s short course. Imaginative themed entries and costumes were encouraged.
Some teams’ clever designs outweighed their seaworthiness.
Prizes were awarded for the fastest boats, most creative designs, best paint jobs, best costumes and sportsmanship — while teams tried to avoid getting the dreaded “sinker” awards that recognized the least seaworthy vessels.