Boat races returning to Haliburton

By Jenn Watt

August 16 2016

The village of Haliburton is sure to be buzzing when the Haliburton Power Boat Races come back to town for a second year Aug. 20 to 21.

The speed boat event which includes hydro T-boats and runabouts will fill Head Lake with action starting on Saturday morning.

On Friday evening Aug. 19 things get started with a meet and greet allowing boating enthusiasts and curious minds to get up close to see the powerful machines. You can meet the racers and their vessels on Friday at the government docks from 7 to 8 p.m.

Organizer Barb Hammond said the event is a financial boon to the town bringing an exciting sport to the region and has a charitable aspect.

Local sponsors have come forward to help the event out including RPM and Youngdale Fuels and Hammond points out there have been many local businesses and institutions helping make the races happen.

More than 38 local businesses have sponsored the event in one way or another she said.

New this year is a beer tent which is being run by the hospital auxiliary with proceeds benefitting local health care. The Lions Club will be selling food with 100 per cent of their sales going to that service club. Into the Blue Bakery will be making pizzas and donating $2 per pizza to the auxiliary.

There will also be a raffle happening at the auxiliary tent.

“We’re hoping to raise $5000” Hammond said.

The event is free and spectators are reminded to come by the tent which will be set-up in Head Lake Park near Rails End Gallery to pick up a free program and get a goodie bag.

“Every spectator gets a copy of the program” says Hammond noting the booklets have terminology and rules of boat racing which will help understand the sport.

Hammond said she got involved in the races because her son races hydro boats. She explains that it is a family event with participants from as young as seven to as old as 75.

There will also be a special race for women who have never been in a race boat before.

The Haliburton Power Boat Races is a Canadian Boating Federation sanctioned event which means it’s professionally run. Last year the federation awarded Haliburton the Best Race of 2015.

“It’s pretty important for Haliburton to be recognized and put on the map” she said.

Spectators can check out the races in Haliburton on Saturday Aug. 20 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Sunday Aug. 21 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Awards for Saturday will be given out Sunday morning at 10.)