SUNDAY, SUNDAY, SUNDAY… 20th Annual Great North River Tugboat Race and Competition

Tugs parading to the starting line for the 2011 tug race
© Mitch Waxman 2011Ro

The 20th Annual Great North River Tugboat Race and Competition is this Sunday, September 2, on the Hudson River between West 43rd and West 79th Streets in Manhattan.

More than a dozen tugboats will battle for harbor honors!  With a river-churning race, bow-to-bow tugboat pushing contests, line-throwing, spinach eating, mascot and tattoo competitions. Tugs range from a 25-foot workboat called The Bronx (who won last year’s “Little Toot” award) to the 118-foot, 8,000 horsepower Lincoln Sea from Kirby Marine.

A deckhand on the Maurania III tries to lasso a bollard during the 2011 line-toss competition, as family and friends aboard the tug cheer him on.
© Mitch Waxman 2011

Wanna get a good seat?  The best viewing is aboard the Circle Line spectator boat (boat will depart Pier 83 on West 43rd St. in Manhattan at 9:30 a.m.).  There is also an excellent shore side view of the race and parade from Hudson River Park Pier 84 on West 44th Street and along the riverfront between West 44th and West 79th Streets.

Tugs Ross Sea and Maurania III, which came in first and third, respectively, in the 2011 race churn up the river as they head toward the finish line.
© Mitch Waxman 2011

Here is a little run down of the festivities:

–9:30 a.m.:  Spectator Boat departs (boarding begins at 9 a.m.)

–10 a.m.:  Tugboats parade north on the Hudson from Pier 84 to West 79th St.

–10:30 -11 a.m.: Tugboat race begins near West 79th St. and finishes at Pier 84.

–11 a.m – noon:  Bow-to-bow pushing contests and line-toss competition

–noon -1 p.m.:  Tugboats and crews gather at Pier 84; spinach eating contests for adults and kids, amateur line-toss competitions; food and beverages available for purchase.

–1 p.m.:  Awards

Chihuahua Maddie McAllister from Maurania III, winner of the 2010 “Best Tugboat Mascot” category, accompanied by children from the McAllister tugboat family.
© Mitch Waxman 2010

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