If you’re just finding out about this now, then it’s probably a bit too late to round up some friends, locate 50-100 milk cartons and construct a vessel that actually floats. But you can still swing on by Green Lake this Saturday between 10:30 and 5:00, and watch the folks who were able to get it together and build a craft.
The Seafair Milk Carton Derby, in its 47th year this year, takes place in the southwest corner of the lake near the boat house. As usual, there will be vendor booths and food to be had, so starvation should not be a problem.
Entrants must comply with a strict set of rules relating to boat construction. Flotation must be provided entirely by milk cartons of the one quart, half gallon or one gallon size. (Juice cartons are also acceptable.) Propulsion must be by human power only. As you can see from the photos, paddling solves this problem for many teams. Other important rules apply, so if you are about to engage in an overnight boat-building binge, you should check those out here.
While merely getting a boat constructed from milk cartons to float may be enough of a challenge for most of us, teams will also compete as either “showboats” or “racing boats.” Racing boats will face off head to head on a short course set up just off shore while showboats will be paraded before a panel of judges. Prizes to be awarded have been donated by Sand Point Sailing, Ivar’s and Ezell’s Chicken among many others. So you can bet the competition will be fierce — or at least wet.