The Buzz: Whatever floats your boat

It's time once again to put together a team and "yacht" for RiverLink's annual raft race, one of the many activities planned for RiverFest 2010. The event is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 14, from noon until 6 p.m., at French Broad River Park. The registration deadline for yachts is Wednesday, Aug. 11.

Huck Finn's kind of yachting: Every year, local nonprofit RiverLink sponsors a raft race in mid-August — just one of many activities at the organization's RiverFest event. Photo courtesy of RiverLink

Each year, coworkers, friends and family members get together to build rafts for the yacht race. A panel of local celebrity judges will evaluate these creations and award them the monikers Fastest, Most Creative, Green Machine Award, Ugliest, Best Theme, Funniest and Rubber Racer. About the only rule is that the craft must float, and it must be removed from the festival grounds after the race.

Landlubbers also will find plenty of diversions, such as a local music showcase and competition, along with the Baraka Mundi belly dancers and daredevils from Asheville Aerial Arts.

Local restaurants will serve up treats, helping to fuel friendly competitions in volleyball, bocce ball, badminton, disc golf and local favorite, corn hole (a bean-bag toss). And local artists and vendors will be selling their wares in the craft village.

The younger set can get into the act too. The Kids Parade offers children a chance to ride, skate, walk, run and skip in costume, and compete for prizes for most creative, cutest and funniest.

Volunteers are still needed (and will be rewarded with a free T-shirt, and one free drink per shift). Interested? Contact RiverLink's Director of Volunteer Services Dave Russell at volunteer@riverlink.org or 252-8474, ext. 18.

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