Triumphant return of Tubie Weekend

The front-runners for the 2022 Tubie Race pass by the Canada Steamship Lines ship Whitefish Bay during the 50th running of this popular local water race. (The Leader/Blancher photo)

MORRISBURG – The size and enthusiasm of the crowds who came out this weekend to take in the parade and the big race, and to enjoy all the events scheduled over two days made it very clear: the Tubies are back. And this 50th anniversary celebration of Tubie weekend was a huge success.

The Tubie Parade on Saturday, July 30, leaving from the waterfront, showed off some outstanding creativity – and some pretty spectacular special effects. Firetrucks, classic cars and one or two unusual vehicles led things off. The big wheel spun on the Price is Right float, turned by its suave host. Fashionable ‘Hippies’ and Love Bugs rode memory floats and danced up and down the streets. The entire “Jungle” from the Lion King delighted the crowds. Kings and Queens of the River celebrated the return of the fun. And Flying Monkeys and a Witch on Rollerblades introduced everyone to a brand new Oz. Several generations (some float riders represented the very first Tubie days in 1971) were involved in the Parade. And all the kids along the route were treated to candy and high fives.

Taking home top prizes for the parade were: First – Lion King (Barclay/Laurin); Second – Wizard of Oz (Millard); Third – The Price is Right (St. Louis).

The Big Tubie Race, Sunday, July 31, at noon, saw 10 teams lower home-adapted, Tubie crafts into the water at Arlor Haven Campground. Fire and Rescue sounded the siren to start the race. After an initial “traffic jam” on the water, the paddlers dug in and headed for the Morrisburg beach, with a flotilla of small boats and jet skis following the action.

Landing first, and capturing the 2022 Kings and Queens of the River title was the Jordan St. Louis team, with an official time of 26.19. Close behind was the Jordan/Lee team at 28.37, with the Jesse Swank team arriving at 29.34. Other times: The Greg Millard team, 30.20, the Cameron Broad team, 31.43, the Zach Lalonde team, 33.58 and the Emyett Fetterly team, 36.50. On- lookers at the beach applauded all the gallant participants in the 50th Tubie Race.

“There were eight of us on our Tubie,” said winning captain Jordan St. Louis, “with a really great support group on shore. We bought “Roll ‘er Back Over” (the tubie’s official name) and altered her for speed. It really was a very fast run, although about six of us collided on the water just at the start. But we pulled out and had a great race.”

While the second race from the Morrisburg docks did not take place, there was a Beer Garden, a Tubie Dance and lots of food and live entertainment for everyone over the two day event. And to the organizers’ relief, the weather all weekend was perfect.

‘Never to be forgotten’ – the 50th Tubies were worth the wait.

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