It literally was rowing and sailing madness Aug. 20 as Come Boating! hosted its annual regatta as part of Harborfest.

There were competitions for rowing gigs and laser sailing races during the regatta.

Come Boating!, Belfast’s community boating organization, hosted a successful rowing regatta during Harborfest. This was the 11th consecutive year the organization’s rowing regatta has been held.

Competing in the rowing races against Belfast’s 32-foot Cornish gigs Belle Fast and Selkie were five racing gigs from three New England clubs: Mike Jenness, Saquish and Interceptor from Plymouth, Mass.; John McCoy out of Buzzard’s Bay, Mass.; and Siren Song, up from Gloucestor, Mass..

In a friendly, yet fiercely-contested race, home team Belle Fast captured the lead during the home stretch and garnered first place in the 3.0 nautical-mile race, with a time of 28:54:28. Her crew consisted of cox Rowan Walauski, first stroke Wes Reddick, second stroke Rafe Blood, Jonathan Fulford, John Dillenbeck, Roy Rogers and Jim Bahoosh.

In second place, with a time of 29:14:18, was Mike Jenness, followed closely by John McCoy, clocked at 29:35:00.

Saquish produced a time of 32:00:28, and Selkie, Belfast’s all-female crew — rowed by first stroke Linda Hurley, second stroke Martha Garfield, Sally Faulkner, Monica Piccinini, Marnie Reeves, Willy Reddick and coxed by Chris Gordon — powered in with a time of 34:45:26 to capture first place among the women’s teams. Interceptor finished the race with a time of 35:42:15, and Siren Song followed at 36:18: 34.

After lunch, an additional lively short course exhibition race was held between Belle Fast and Selkie. The close race pitted crews consisting of combinations of adult volunteers and trained youth rowers from Murial Curtis’ Station Maine of Rockland.

Regatta event organizers Carol and Malcolm Gater said, “It was a wonderful event. It was fun to see old racing friends from the other rowing organizations and meet new enthusiasts. The crews from ‘away,’ towing gigs, began arriving Friday afternoon, and had time for a practice row before gathering at our home, The Wealthy Poor House B&B, for dinner. There was a lively exchange of rowing talk and good-natured teasing about how all the crews would do the next day. Several Come Boating! hosts opened their homes to the visitors and all retired early for a good night’s sleep.”

On Saturday morning many ComeBoating! members pitched in to help set up tents, tables, do registration duty, set out baked goods for a bake sale and dessert for lunch, and supplied dishes for the lunch that was served to all the crews. Others were on the water setting the course, acting as safety committee, guard boats, race starters, and time keepers, the Gaters said.

“Even though the race got off to a late start because the fog rolled into the bay, the camaraderie among the rowers, the members of Come Boating! and all the support people made for a very special day for everyone” the Gaters said.


Good wind and sun provided perfect sailing conditions in the afternoon for 13 Laser competitors to enjoy six races that were held as part of the 11th annual Come Boating! Regatta.

The afternoon of racing was part of a series of races held each summer for the Maine Laser Championships.

Three different courses were sailed, including an Olympic course under the auspices of Sandy Squire an experienced race officer with the Antigua Race Week and the Louis Vuitton Cup in New Zealand.

David Frazier of Granby, Conn. took first place, Hank Thornburn of Harpswell second, Frederick Boursier of Warren third and George Haselton of Rockport fourth.

In the Youth League, John S. Piotti of Unity was first and Jack Giblin of Marblehead, Mass. second.

For more information about Come Boating! and its sailing and rowing programs go online to or call 338-3466.

VillageSoup sports staff can be reached by phone at 207-594-4401 or by email at