Bathtub Races

Monday, September 3, 2012

Do you know Canada is becoming famous for their bathtub races?  Have you ever seen these peculiar motorized bathtubs in a competitive sense?  What do you know about bathtub races in Canada?

Bathtub races (using a bathtub boat) have been part of Canadian festive scenes since 1967 (when they first took place).   Bathtub races were a part of Vancouver’s Annual Sea Festival, at that time, “tubbers” raced along the Nanaimo beach to Kitsilano beach at Vancouver. The course had to change after the venue relocated. Today “tubbers” drive their boats starting from the Nanaimo Harbour to Departure Bay.   Nanaimo now holds this event annually.  There is even an International World Championship Bathtub Race.  It now one of the most famous fun events in Canada.

Nanaimo is now on the map for these races.  In fact, Nanaimo is sometimes known as tub city!  The international world championship bathtub race is a part of the 4 day Nanaimo marine festival.  Tubbers from around the World come to partake in the event. 

Over the years, the “Hub” has inspired other cities as well. Bremerton, Auckland’s North Shore as well as Washington who also host their own Bathtub Derby.

Not only do competitors get to enjoy the day, spectators are first witnesses to the splashing and crashing during the competition. It is an exhilarating event.  Competitors compete for prizes, and at the end of the day, one tuber is reigned champion.  As well, the winner also gets a lot of media coverage and publicity. 

So are you interested in taking part?  Some tubbers have spent as much as $3000 to create their own bathtub entry.  Generally, the competition is held at the end of July ever year, and Nanaimo has its own bathtub society (and webpage).

The festival has many activities for those both young and old, and everyone is rewarded by nightfall with a display of fireworks.

So, if you are planning a trip to Nanaimo this summer, make sure that you check out the marine festival and the international bathtub competition.  It puts Nanaimo on the map!