Truth be told, I wasn’t sure what the team at Race World Offshore had in mind when it put out the call for the inaugural RWO Key West Boat Building Contest and Race taking place on Saturday in the heart of Truman Waterfront Park. Along with not understanding what all it entailed, I wondered how well it would be received the morning after the Friday night street party stretching along 10 blocks of Duval Street.
Participants in the Race World Offshore inaugural boat-building contest and race in Key West, Fla., had a lot of fun last Saturday. All photos courtesy Lee Stanford/Race World Offshore
When all was said and done, the good-natured boat-building event that was accompanied by RWO’s Vendor Village, which was open all day and included driver meet and greets, live music, a full bar, food and shopping, appeared to be a monumental success. In fact, organizers and participants alike expect next year’s contest to be much larger.
According to Lee Stanford, RWO’s director of business development, the bid to obtain the five-year contract with the City of Key West presented by RWO included the boat-building contest and vendor village, both of which were new “events within the event” designed to be interactive with the Key West community. The vendor village, which Stanford said provided a great opportunity for local nonprofit organizations and businesses to display their wares, was well received, and the race got excellent engagement for the first year, despite an early morning drizzle.
In all, eight teams signed up for the event—Bush Bashers, B-Naughty, Wicked, Paddle Pirates (U.S. Coast Guard Station Key West), Team Allen Lawn Care And Landscaping, Wake Effects, Wix and Shadow Pirate.
Complete 2019 Key West Coverage