Cardboard Regatta Information

Build a “pirate ship” and set it to sail, er, … paddle across Webster Lake


A cardboard regatta is a boat race in hand constructed vessels made entirely out of cardboard, duct tape and paint.  It is a competition with two parts:

  1. the first is to design and build a boat made out of cardboard
  2. the second is to make sure it not only floats but can also compete against other handmade boats for the fastest time on the lake.
Builders can only used corrugated cardboard, duct tape, masking tape, simple one part adhesives and paint and a LOT of imagination.  As long as you can put a crew in it, it works.  When you register be sure to download the guidelines so you know what we will be looking for in the judging portion. The primary purpose of the guidelines are to make a safe boat (so you don’t submarine yourself) and one that makes the competition generally fair.  We will check your boat for the basics.
Last year one of our winners made their entire boat the night before the event so it does not have to take weeks to put it together AND if you want to put hours into it to make it totally decorated and awesome, feel free!
Teams can build the following boat sizes:
  • 1 crew member (dingy class)
  • 2 crew members (schooner class)
  • 3-4 crew members (cruiser class)
  • 5-6 crew members (friggate class)

Depending on the number of boats registered boats of similar sizes will race for prizes.  If there is only one boat in any size it will race with another boat similar in size.

Cardboard Regatta Schedule (Saturday Event)

Please pre-register your boat so that we know you will be coming (so we can determine how long the competition will last).  We will allow walk-ups but would prefer a “heads up” you are coming.

  • 11:00 AM – Boat check in – they will be on display from the time of your arrival until the race
  • 12:45 PM – All members of your team must be on-site so we can start at 1:00 PM
  • 1:00 PM – First Race Starts
  • End time will be determined by number of boats registered.

How to Build a Cardboard Boat

Please remember that you must adhere to the rules of OUR competition. Not everything you see and read on the internet is admissible in our Regatta but these examples are really good as a starting point to get information about how boats can go together.

Northglenn Pirate Fest – Rules and Regulations

This site boosts “how to build a cardboard boat in less than 3 hours.” The site includes photos and a list of suggested materials. A good place to start!

This site is a photostory of one group’s construction process. Shows all aspects of building from design to race. From the official Great Cardboard Boat Regatta.