Milwaukee Riverkeeper & Harbor District, Inc
Join us for the inaugural Milwaukee Boat Parade on Saturday, October 7, 2017! Participate by registering a decorated boat, art barge or as a costumed paddler! If you can’t join us on the water, we have viewing locations to soak in all of the fun!
Boats will compete for prizes in one of two categories:
- Paddle Boats
1st: Patagonia Black Hole™ Wheeled Duffel 45L
2nd: Clear Water Outdoor 2-person, 2-hour Kayak or SUP Rental & $40 Gift Certificate to Ruckus
3rd: $20 Colectivo Coffee Gift Certificate, Eddee Daniel’s Urban Wilderness: Exploring a Metropolitan Watershed, and a Hand-made Ceramic Coffee Mug
- Motor and Sail Powered Boats
- 1st: Patagonia Black Hole™ Duffel 60L
- 2nd: Clear Water Outdoor 2-person, 2-hour Kayak or SUP Rental & $40 Gift Certificate to Ruckus
- 3rd: $20 Colectivo Coffee Gift Certificate, Eddee Daniel’s Urban Wilderness: Exploring a Metropolitan Watershed, and a Hand-made Ceramic Coffee Mug
Only paid participants are eligibleto participate in the contest and receive prizes; civic and nonprofit partners excluded from contest prices.
Boats are judged on the following criteria:
- Boats are judged on their creative decoration of their vessel.
- Crew will be judged on their costumes, uniforms, attire, and theme-related antics.
- Boat Handling
- Maintains smooth, constant, speed and approximate 100- foot spacing behind boat ahead (only for Motor and Sail Powered Boats, and Art Barges).
Winners will be announced at Harbor Fest at 3:00 pm and be announced on Milwaukee Riverkeeper’s website and social media channels! Winners are able to pick up their prize Milwaukee Riverkeeper’s office the week following the parade.
- Civic or Nonprofit Partner Boat – FREE
- Paddler Powered – Bring Your Own Boat – $25
- Paddler Powered – Rent A Single Kayak from Milwaukee Kayak Company (must be 18 or older) – $40
- Motor or Wind Powered Boat – $50
- Paddlers will begin at Lakefront Brewery and head down stream toward the harbor.
- Motor/Sail Boats will line up in the harbor. Look for the Milwaukee Riverkeeper boat and line up according to your numbers upstream.
- Art Barges will enter from the Bruce Street Ramp.
Timeline for Participants:
- 9:00 am – Check in and boat decorating begins for Paddlers at Lakefront Brewery.
- 10:30 am – Paddlers Get On Water
- 11:00 am – Begin Parade
- 11:45 am – Larger boats and Art Barges join from Harbor
- 12:00 pm – Parade 1st Passes E Greenfield Ave
- Return to – MKC dock (for rented boats) around 12:30 pm
- Return to – Lakefront around 1:00 pm
Friday, October 6 – 3:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Motor Boats, Sail Boats, Art Barges must check in the day before at Lakefront Brewery. You can pick up your number, 2017 Milwaukee Boat Parade flag, and turn in any waivers.
Saturday, October 7 – 9:00 am – 10:00 am
Paddlers must check-in at Lakefront Brewery the day of the event to sign your waiver, pick up your number and 2017 Milwaukee Boat Parade flag. You can also use this time to decorate your boats. If you are renting a boat from Milwaukee Kayak Company you cannot use any nails, screws, staples, glue, to attach anything to the boat. If you damage the boat in any way you will be required to pay for the repairs.
Cancellation due to weather:
If we must cancel due to weather, we will update our website and send out a mass email. Your registration fee will NOT be refunded. This will be a donation to support the work of Milwaukee Riverkeeper and Harbor District.
- All boats must operate with no wake.
- All motor boats must keep a 100-yard distance from any other boats on the water.
- Anyone in a parade boat must sign a Milwaukee Riverkeeper Boat Parade Waiver.
- All participants must wear a life jacket during the parade.
- No alcohol is allowed.
- No sirens or whistles
- Lights that do not follow color protocol (e.g. string lights, color spotlights, etc.) may be used during the parade but must be turned off immediately following the parade.
*We will be using marine radio channel 72 to make any announcements and dictate the procession of the boats.
Thank You to our Sponsors!
Greater Milwaukee Foundation’s Mary L. Nohl Fund
Milwaukee Kayak Company
Carefree Boat Club
CenterPointe Yacht Services