What is the Workout on the Waterfront?
Cedar Key’s Workout on the Waterfront (WoW) is an exciting day packed full of fun and active events, scheduled this year for February 24th, 2018. The WoW event aims to raise awareness about plastic pollution along our coasts. Proceeds from the 2018 races and silent auction will benefit the public aquarium at NCBS, the Cedar Key School, and the annual Cedar Key International Coastal Cleanup.
Coastal Heritage 5K: Runners of all ages follow a route winding through downtown Cedar Key and along the historic waterfront. Race starts 9 a.m. at Lil Shark Park (192 2nd St) in Cedar Key. Register at Active.com in advance or day of race at 6:30 a.m. Runner check-in begins at 6:30 a.m.
Astena Otie Kayak Challenge: For kayakers ages 18 and above. Starts at the beach in downtown Cedar Key at 10:15 a.m., runs around and through Astena Otie Key and back to the City Park beach. Racers must pick up at least one item of garbage from Atsena Otie’s shoreline before racing back to City Park. Register at Active.com in advance or day of race at 6:30 a.m.
Repurpose-It-Regatta: all ages are invited to build their own boat from recyclable materials and race beginning at G Street and 3rd Street at 11:15 a.m. (Boats with children require 1 adult). See below for detailed rules – certain materials (e.g., styrofoam) are excluded.Register at Active.com in advance or day of race at 6:30 a.m.
Silent Auction, Lunch, and Awards Presentation: Join fellow racers for a lunch at city park and browse the silent auction while you wait for award presentations. Awards will be given for 1st-3rd place in the 5K and Kayak race for each age and gender category. For the Repurpose-it-Regatta, awards will be given for the Fastest Boat, the Most Creative Boat, Pulling up the Rear (slowest boat across the finish line), and Winner of Pirate Heat (fastest out of disqualified boats).
Detailed Rules for Repurpose-it-Regatta
Participants: 2 to 5 per boat. If any participant is under 18 at least 1 adult required to ride on boat.
- Corrugated Cardboard
- Duct Tape – Only on Seams & Bends
- Cotton Rope
- Natural fabrics (e.g., cotton, burlap, wool, coir, silk, linen)
- Non-pressure-Treated Wood
- Paper Milk Cartons
- Recyclable Plastics (any plastics used must be recycled in designated containers after the race)
- Silicone Caulk – on seams only
- Spray Paint
- Sails out of materials above
- Anything you collect from the aquatic environment you may use in construction of vessel with proof. (i.e., photo) (Except for Styrofoam –No Exceptions)
- No styrofoam or foam of any kind
- No polyurethane paint
- No items that are part of another boat or made for boating (including paddle)
- No PVC
- No non-silicone caulk
- No synthetic fabrics (e.g., nylon, polyester, rayon, elastane, spandex)
- No Fishing line or monofilament
Additional Rules and Required Items
- Life jackets for all participants
- Build your own paddle
- Name for Boat
- Figure head or decoration – Must comply with materials allowed
- All materials must be removed from water after event – Duct tape removed from plastic or materials before recycling
- If any piece of your boat falls into the water during the race, it must be removed from the water before crossing the finish line or you will be disqualified
- Fastest Boat
- Most Creative Boat
- Pulling up the Rear
- Winner of Pirate Heat (fastest out of disqualified boats)
Why are some materials restricted?
The pollution of our coasts and oceans with debris and other waste is a global problem, and we all have a part to play in reducing our use of harmful chemicals and plastics, especially plastic ropes, fishing line and “disposable” plastics like bottles, bags, plastic ware, and styrofoam. Therefore, we want to encourage boats in the Repurpose-it Regatta be made from natural materials. Natural fibers and materials break down over time, while plastics and synthetic materials never biodegrade, only break into smaller pieces.
Plastics are a hazard in the ocean in many ways – marine life can easily become entangled or trapped in plastic trash or can mistake the plastic for food and ingest it. Marine life that get tangled in plastic or eat plastic are likely to die painful and slow deaths as a result. This is a big problem, especially for birds, dolphins, whales, and sea turtles. Plastic in the ocean is also a problem for fisheries and humans because plastic degrades into tiny pieces that make their way into the food web. Small plastic particles (called microplastics) can trap high amounts of toxins on their surface. The plastic and the toxins can carry through the food web into the fish we eat. We are only now realizing the magnitude of this problem and it has unknown effects on fisheries and human health.
So, what can you do to help?
- Refuse to use of single use plastics. Remember the good ol’ “3 Rs” – reduce, reuse, recycle…? Now, there is a 4th “R”: Refuse. We should do away with the notion that plastic is “disposable” because plastics take a very long time to degrade. Some of the most common plastic items found in the ocean are plastic bags, plastic caps and lids, plastic drinking straws, and plastic beverage bottles. You can really cut down on plastic use by bringing your own cloth bags to the grocery store, purchasing items packaged in paper or glass whenever possible, using a refillable metal or glass water bottle, and stopping your use of plastic drinking straws.
- Recycle. Of course, you should recycle whenever possible but recycling is not a true solution to plastic pollution in the ocean – many items are not recyclable and plastic recycling is not efficient. Focus on limiting plastic use first, and recycle when you can’t avoid using plastic.
- Limit sources of microplastics. Purchase personal care products that do not contain polyethylene and stick to all natural fabrics, as synthetic fibers are some of the most common types of microplastic found in Florida’s waters.
- Be a responsible angler. Recycle your used monofilament in a specially designed monofilament recycling bin. Monofilament can’t be recycled in regular recycling bins but these special PVC bins can be found at many boat ramps and fishing piers.
- Participate in marine cleanup events. Many coastal communities host clean-ups you can take part in. Or, gather some friends and start your own shoreline cleanup!
- Pledge to make a change. You can take the pledge to reduce your plastic use and find out more at www.plasticaware.org.