45th Buffalo Bayou Regatta

BBP RegattaIt’s approaching fast! The 45th Annual Buffalo Bayou Partnership Regatta will take place on March 11th from 7am-2pm. This year, HTXoutdoors has got our paddles all in, and we are inviting you to get wet-n-wild, too! You don’t miss out on this Houston tradition.

Did you know Buffalo Bayou’s annual regatta used to be nicknamed the “Reeking Regatta: The World’s Smelliest Canoe Race.” In 1972, it’s promotional posters featured paddlers daring the 15-mile watercourse in gas masks. The brilliant idea for the race came from Carl Gilson who wanted to showcase the potential of the neglected bayou in the heart of downtown Houston. A hundred Houstonians took to the water in canoes that year and were surprised to find that the water was not as nasty as it was rumored to be.

45 years later, Gilson’s race has grown to become the largest canoe race in Texas and the fifth largest in the United States! Over 800 people are expected to launch from San Felipe and Voss, paddling through the meandering channel toward the finish line in Sesquicentennial Park downtown, where they will be greeted by a Zydeco band, beer from Saint Arnolds and supportive spectators.

The event is open to the public, inviting the most intense of racers or those who just want to have fun. Online entry is open now and registration closes on race day. Canoes and kayaks are not included in the cost of the registration, thus participants will need to bring their own or rent.

 Regatta Schedule:

  • 7:30 am: Regatta packet pick-up and day-of registration at San Felipe and Voss
  • 9:00 am: Race begins
  • 11:00 am: Free finish line festivities begin at Sesquicentennial Park featuring live zydeco music, rock climbing wall, food and drinks available for purchase
  • 1:00 pm: Awards ceremony
  • 2:00 pm: Regatta and festivities end
Trophies will be awarded to the top three paddlers in Teams, Recreational Canoe, Recreational Kayak, and Unlimited Divisions.  A grand prize will be given to the Styrofoam Cup winner, the boat that collects the most trash!


Free shuttle service for all participants (no boats) will be provided by The Wave at the Finish Line from 11:30 am to 3:30 pm on Preston Street. The shuttle will transport participants back to the Start Area at 7700 San Felipe.

Race begins at 9:00 am (with 5 starts):
 – 9:00 am: ICF K-1/Surf Skis and Solo Unlimited (optional in-water start)

– 9:10 am: All Corporate Cups and All Recreational Class Canoes

– 9:20 am: All Recreational Solo Kayaks (long and short; optional in-water start)

– 9:30 am: All Unlimited (optional in-water start)

– 9:40 am: Day-of Registrants (will not be included in official timekeeping)

15-mile Race Route Map (https://www.google.com/maps/d/u/0/viewer?ll=29.759311000000004%2C-95.385017&spn=0.155281%2C0.308647&hl=en&msa=0&z=12&ie=UTF8&mid=1zmOTDVDHrYGaprriL7Gv3G-_W1s)

More information here: http://buffalobayou.org/event/45th-annual-buffalo-bayou-partnership-regatta/

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