Byline: Lynne Klaft
LUNENBURG - The late afternoon sun was shining and the waters of Whalom Lake were clear and calm as people gathered on the shoreline and ringed the race area in boats in anticipation of Lunenburg Public Library's Great Cardboard Boat Race.
"This is the best part of the summer, where else can families get together, build a boat and have friends and relatives come out and cheer them on, what a great way to spend a lovely summer evening," said Children's Librarian Karen Kemp, who coordinated the race.
"Everyone can participate, young and old, you are using things you might throw out, you can be creative in your colors and design, use math to figure out the dimension - the sky's the limit with a cardboard boat.
"And if you sink, that's fun, too ... there's always next year!" said Ms. Kemp.
"," said Children's librarian Karen Kemp, race coordinator.
The 10 entries this year included a slimmed-down Fairy Boat 3 by the Laford family, a Pink Flamingo, a bright yellow Duck Boat, a green and smiling Loch Ness Monster, the Desjardins' winner from last year, The Electric Eels,, a green and black Show Boat and a John Deere tractor boat by the Murphys.
"My son, Shane, picked the color and the design he wanted, a tractor. We'll be happy if it floats!" said Shane's mother, Jennifer Murphy, who cut, shaped, and taped the boat made out of a refrigerator box in eight hours for her 6-year-old son.
"Shane loves tractors; we have to go past Padula's every day to make sure they aren't missing any of their stock. He said he wants to be president of John Deere," said Mrs. Murphy.
The question of the day: would the Board of Selectmen's boat make it to the finish line and how would it fare against Lancaster's Board of Selectmen's boat?
"C'mon, don't be so picky ... half of the boat made it last year," said Selectman Thomas J. Mason, laughing.
Four of the five-member board carried their latest creation onto the beach, a red canoe-shaped, 10-foot-long beauty, named All A Board by Selectman Paula J. Bertram.
The boat was designed by Selectman Steven M. deBettencourt, and all five board members worked for a week on it.
The boat did make it to the finish line, beating Lancaster Selectmen Jennifer E. Leone's, The Lancaster Golden Dragon Boat, but the Shepherd family's boat, The Lego, won first place in that heat, picking up the Flying Fish Award for fastest boat as well....