Merigomish fun fest: thrills on land and sea

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MERIGOMISH — Dale Osgood was not certain if he would enter the annual Merigomish cardboard boat race. Now he’s a three- time champion.

Osgood repeated his first-place performance and Central Nova MP Sean Fraser was once again the runner-up among 10 participants in the annual race. Casey Bannerman was third.

“I was going to skip it this year; then I realized my friend would be racing,” Osgood said.

He was able to use the same craft he won with last year, but made it sturdier this time. It consisted of cardboard tubes duct-taped together and enclosed to help him stay afloat.

“I disassembled it and put it back together,” he said. “It’s pretty much the same but last year it got squished. It didn’t do as badly as I thought it would.”

Cardboard boat race organizer Debbie Radcliffe was not sure but she figured this was the eighth year for the cardboard boat race.

“It’s a riot,” she said. “It’s a great community time, and the tide was perfect.”

All the competitors had proper floating devices, while George Vladish patrolled the event in a canoe with his dog Jersey.

The races allowed volunteers to assemble at the grounds around the former school for refreshments, games, bouncing castles and other kids’ amusements.

“We always get a good crowd for this,” organizer Kim MacIvor said.

There was also a dog parade that allowed people of all ages to walk with their dogs or stuffed toys.

Dale Osgood raises his paddle in victory. He is a three-time winner in the Merigomish Fun Fest cardboard boat race. (Goodwin photos)