2015 Winners


Individual Paddle Winners:

1st Tim Smith

2nd Lisa Evans

3rd Jaja Martin

Relay Paddle Winners:

1st Sarah Whitty and Dale Hartt

2nd Jaja Martin and Robert Watts

3rd Michael Rethman and George Simler

Motorboat Winners:

1st Christian Rioux

2nd Buzz Pinkham

3rd Tom Lishness

Flipped Motorboat:

Jeff Dutra

Flipped Paddleboat:

Margaret Ivins

The Second Annual Pumpkinboat Regatta, held in 2008, was the topic of an in-depth segment on Discovery Channel's "Wreckreation Nation". It was there that the rules were explained as "there are no rules and no fouls, other than that the pumpkin needs to float and needs to go really fast"! Described as the "extreme sport of gardening," this real-life jack-in-the- beanstalk sport has been seen by over 30,000 fans, including U.S. Senator Susan Collins and WCSH's Bill Green. Visitors have flocked to Damariscotta since then to watch giant gourds -steered by captains either paddling or powered by "wicked nice motors"- ply the waters of the Damariscotta River.

In 2012, a reporter for the ABC afternoon talk show “The Chew” participated in the Sixth Annual Pumpkinboat Regatta, and the entire Damariscotta Pumpkinfest™ was covered on their October show.

In 2013, “CBS News - Sunday Morning” show featured the regatta in an in-depth segment! The top three winners in the Powerboat Division in 2013 included Christian Rioux, Buzz Pinkham and Tom Lishness, respectively.

The Ninth Annual Pumpkinfest Regatta will kick off at around noon on Monday, Columbus Day 2015, depending on the tides. (Needless to say, those 600# pumpkinboats need HIGH TIDE to be able to float & go really fast !) Please check this web site later in the Spring for the updated 2015 event schedule.
There are 2 divisions in the regatta: the "Paddleboat" and the "Powerboat" Divisions. Paddleboat races consist of several heats, with a final overall heat to determine the winner. Depending on participation, there also may be a relay team contest.

In the Powerboat division, the pumpkinboats are actually outfitted with a 5-10 hp outboard motor, resulting in a crowd-pleasing and memorable race. All teams in both divisions will be competing for the coveted "Golden Gourd" trophies.
Yet another exciting regatta event which debuted in 2011, and which MAY be repeated depending on participation, is "Pumpkinboat Polo"! This event consists of a competition where the objective is to retrieve a specific colored ball, using a "smelt net", from a center corral and place that ball -- one at a time -- into each of four perimeter rings. The first participant to place all four balls into each of the four perimeter rings wins!

The regatta can be viewed harbor-side, or via a "live feed" into The Lincoln Theater, where spectators are able to watch the event, seated in the warmth and comfort of the historic theater.

Interested “Squashbucklers” are encouraged to contact Bill Clark at 207-563-8512 or regatta@damariscottapumpkinfest.com. All Regatta participants must sign a waiver, as well as attend a captains’ meeting prior to the Regatta, for a detailed safety briefing.

Please click here for a regatta participant waiver, or here for a printable event schedule.



Click here for a Construction List for a Basic Pumpkinboat.

© 2015 Damariscotta Pumpkinfest
All photographs, video, and text are the property of Damariscotta Pumpkinfest
and may not be duplicated without written permission.
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