Students sink, swim, succeed at Plywood Regatta April 20, 2015
More than 250 students picked up power tools, built their own boats and got in them and hoped they would float at the 19th annual Plywood Regatta on April 11 and 12 at the Dania Beach Marina. Thirty-four teams of 6-8 students from schools around South Florida participated in the event, which is aimed at introducing local youth and the community to the art of boat building and the excitement of recreational boating.
Using only the supplied materials of plywood, 3M 5200 fast-cure caulk and zip ties and specified tools of their own, the teams constructed and painted their boats on April 11 and raced them in a series of heats on Sunday to determine the champions. The winners were:
- Fort Lauderdale Mariners Club Cup Overall Champion – Titan Thunder, Nova High School, Davie, sponsored by Derecktor
- Division Awards (Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced)
- Rachel Carson, Palm Beach Maritime, Lantana, sponsored by Kelly’s Landing
- T-Rain, Riviera Beach Maritime Academy, sponsored by Gold Coast
- Titan Thunder, Nova High School, Davie, sponsored by Derecktor
- Most Spirited Team – Tiger Sharks – New River Middle School, Fort Lauderdale, sponsored by Seafarer
- Best Decorated Boat – Piece of Cake – South Broward High School #5, Hollywood, sponsored by Interlux
- Most Innovative Design – White Tip Cable Sharks, New River Middle School, Fort Lauderdale, sponsored by Cable Marine
- Future Yacht Broker Award – Wheelabrator Sandbar Sharks, New River Middle School, Fort Lauderdale, sponsored by Wheelabrator
- Courage & Perseverance – SS Gators, Gulfstream Middle School, Hallandale Beach, sponsored by Ward’s Marine Electric
- Seafarer Marine Award (Best All Around) – Wahoo’s Behind Us, Riviera Beach Maritime Academy, sponsored by 3M
- Propeller Design Champion – Wheelabrator Sandbar Sharks, New River Middle School, Fort Lauderdale, sponsored by Wheelabrator
This year’s regatta included a special guest judge, Saylor, an 8-year-old with spina bifida who is receiving treatment at the Children’s Diagnostic and Treatment Center. Saylor, who came in second place as Winterfest Junior Captain whose dad is in the Coast Guard, helped choose the best decorated boat and most spirited team.
Students for the first time also could build their own propellers and race remote-controlled boats they attached them to in Whiskey Creek. Frank and Jimmie’s Propeller provided copper squares and tools to shape them into propellers and attached them to the boats, which were raced in a series of heats.
All Plywood Regatta proceeds benefit South Florida’s marine industry education programs and the Plywood Regatta Scholarship Fund. The aim of these programs is to encourage students to pursue careers in the marine trades, maintaining South Florida’s talent cluster as the global leader for service in the recreational and yachting segments of the marine industry.
The winners of this year’s Plywood Regatta scholarship contest were Parker Haywood and Kasey Carlson, who both attend Riviera Beach Maritime Academy. Parker will be studying marine engineering at Florida Keys Community College, and Kasey will be studying marine transportation at Massachusetts Maritime Academy. Each received a scholarship for $1,000.
Sponsors included Interlux, Seafarer Marine, Dania Beach, 3M, Gold Coast Marine Distributors, Westport, Fort Lauderdale Mariners Club, TGL Environmental, Land and Sea, Boat Owners Warehouse, Antibes Yachtwear, Troy Industries, Atlantic Marine Power Systems, Teak Decking Systems, Show Management, Wheelabrator, High Seas Yacht Service, Cable Marine, Derecktor, Rolly Marine, Dockside Corporate Services, Advanced Mechanical Enterprises, Frank and Jimmie’s Propeller, Neptune Boat Lifts, Riverside Park Residents Association, Hall of Fame Marina, Marlins, Florida Yacht Brokers Association, Merritt Marine Supply, Kelly’s Landing, National Marine Suppliers, Ward’s Marine Electric, Wright Maritime Group, Roscioli Yachting Center, Headhunter, Marine Max, ASPIRA and Outer Reef Yachts.