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50 years of Regatta deserve special attention

There are many volunteers, organizations and institutions in our region worthy of praise for the dedicated time and effort people put into making our area caring and vibrant, whether with events or causes.

The Lock Haven Area Jaycees is one of them.

In fact, the Jaycees created something that has and should endure as one of the iconic events that puts Lock Haven on the map: The annual Labor Day Regatta.

That holiday weekend event brings many, many people to little old Lock Haven for powerboat races, food on the midway, carnival rides, arts and crafts, live musical entertainment, fireworks and a wonderful stroll on the Riverwalk and in downtown.

This is a fact: The Regatta yearly attracts nearly 200 powerboat racers from throughout the U.S., mostly the East.

It is so popular that Lock Haven won the national “Best Site of the Year” award in 2019 from the American Powerboat Association (APBA).

That’s right, this bucolic little city and surrounds are considered a national treasure to powerboat racers across the United States.

The yearly event is a strong and lasting partnership among the Jaycees, the Delaware Valley Outboard powerboat racing organization, and the APBA, the City of Lock Haven and others.

The 2020 national races here were cancelled due to the pandemic.

But if all goes as planned, Lock Haven should again hear and see these beautiful, wood-crafted powerboats speeding on the West Branch of the Susquehanna River in a tradition that has been — or will be — carried on for 50 years.

Indeed, this coming September will mark the 50th Labor Day Regatta and there is a lot to celebrate.

That’s why — if conditions allow — The Express will partner with the Jaycees, Delaware Valley Outboard, the APBA, local dignitaries and tourism-economic development officials and others to host an RSVP meet-and-greet the evening of Friday, Sept. 3, at The Elks Lodge on Main Street in downtown.

Why not bring the powerboat racers and supporters into downtown for a short time so they can be thanked, praised and recognized for their work to bring a special, national competition to Lock Haven?

Get ready for a very special presentation of 50 years of boat racing in Lock Haven!

And looking beyond, why not make it an annual meet and greet, a way for Lock Haven to welcome and thank these special people?

Let’s hope that happens.

Please, stay tuned for more as local partners gather to plan a pretty special evening of hospitality. There are a lot of people to thank and recognize.

We all gotta regatta!

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