Wind and rain can't sink creativity at Fox Lake's Cardboard Boat Race

  • The Mutt Cutts, aka Jay Caile and Tarin Noga of Fox Lake, paddle their way to shore Sunday during the Fox Lake Cardboard Boat Race at Lakefront Park.

      The Mutt Cutts, aka Jay Caile and Tarin Noga of Fox Lake, paddle their way to shore Sunday during the Fox Lake Cardboard Boat Race at Lakefront Park. Steve Zalusky | Staff Photographer

  • Benny Thatcher drifts in to shore while partner Evelyn Lardy is helped back in the boat Sunday during the annual Fox Lake Cardboard Boat Race.

      Benny Thatcher drifts in to shore while partner Evelyn Lardy is helped back in the boat Sunday during the annual Fox Lake Cardboard Boat Race. Steve Zalusky | Staff Photographer

  • Maya Feldman, 9, of Lindenhurst brings her boat to shore after it capsized Sunday during the annual Fox Lake Cardboard Boat Races.

      Maya Feldman, 9, of Lindenhurst brings her boat to shore after it capsized Sunday during the annual Fox Lake Cardboard Boat Races. Steve Zalusky | Staff Photographer

 
Updated 8/15/2022 6:20 AM

Threatening skies, pesky winds and a relentless spray of light rain couldn't sink Sunday's Cardboard Boat Race in Fox Lake.

Both the boaters and their cardboard crafts proved remarkably resilient. If you were looking to see vessels sink, you were likely to be disappointed.

 

Maya Feldman, 9, of Lindenhurst plunged into the water after her boat toppled over. But she righted the ship and brought it back intact.

"I think I leaned too much one way," she said.

Six-year-old Benny Thatcher, of Fox Lake and the Knuckleheads team, finished the race after teammate Evelyn Lardy, 4. also of Fox Lake, fell out of the boat.

Another boat. dubbed the Rat Rod, was decked out like a hot rod, including with wheels and an engine -- all cardboard, of course. Thanks largely to a generous application of duct tape that made it appear more like a tank, it was so sturdy that it ventured out three times with different crews of Antioch couple Jim and Laura Skender's grandchildren.

"It's a Fox Lake tradition," Matt Trujillo, Fox Lake parks and recreation manager, said of the annual boat races. "A lot of families and local organizations participate. And it's fun. We have the Chain O' Lakes here. So it's cool that we get to utilize it for that."

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Boaters were supplied with a building kit that included a roll of duct tape, a box cutter and an 8-foot by 4-foot piece of cardboard to create their craft. The rest was supplied by individual creativity, which was in ample abundance Sunday.

One team, the Mutt Cutts, paid tribute to "Dumb and Dumber" with a design emulating the mobile dog van from the film. Pilots Jay Caile and Tarin Noga sported top hats and bow ties.

Ginger Imes of Ingleside and her grandchildren, Tommy, 6, and Madison, 3, Baugher of Spring Grove, sailed in a Super Mario Brothers cart, with cardboard flames shooting from the tailpipe.

"We've been wanting to do it. We thought it would be fun," Imes said. "So we started a couple of weeks ago and just started putting it together. We worked on it a couple hours each day, painting and putting tape on."

Kurt Bachara of McHenry designed a craft with a chicken theme, including feathers, for his grandchildren, Isla and Greyson Swan.

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