199th Royal St. John's Regatta


Last week held St. John's annual Regatta Day. A municipal "floating" holiday, if you will, as the day is most seriously dependent on the weather. Planned for the first Wednesday of August each year, it is commonly postponed. A civic holiday, patrons are expected to report to work if the holiday is delayed, though not likely highly enforced. Especially since the night before Regatta Day is best known for wild boozing. Particularly on George Street as it coincides with the George Street Festival.  

This year, a misty morning couldn't slow down the festivities, so we were off to Quidi Vidi Lake to participate as scheduled! The biggest event is obviously the crew races. 2017 boasted a whopping 100 crews competing for glory. Other big attractions are the bountiful food trucks and gaming booths. 

James and I circled the lake, scoping out all the new food vendors, in search of something unique. We found it at this Jamaican stand. This family does not own a restaurant, but has setup a booth to share their national cuisine. We were delighted to taste something not otherwise available in St. John's. 

Our favorite development of the day came as we were walking the path down to the lake. We stumbled upon an artist selling various works when James spotted an expressive Dizzy Gillespie. In the truest irony, James and I had weeks earlier decided to name our house, located on Gillespie Street, Dizzy. We'd researched the street name to come up with something interesting, thinking we'd find some Gillespie on vinyl to commemorate our home purchase. However, this painting has done more than that. It's married our Houston home with our Newfoundland experience and given James and I the biggest rush of fate. Our excitement to move into our new and first home has exponentially intensified. 

Historically, the Royal St. John's Regatta holds the title of North America's oldest sporting event. Boat races are documented as far back as 1816 and further believed to date back even earlier.  

Bittersweet, this is our second and final year to stand in the crowd.