July 11nd, 2014
St. John’s, NL – The Narrows Group Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving, protecting and enhancing The Narrows, the historic entrance to St. John’s harbour, announced today details of the 2nd annual Grand Punt Race, Townies vs. Baymen.
The event is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 9th (weather permitting) at Harbourside Park in St. John’s, and will see “Townie” and “Baymen crews” compete in a race around St. John’s harbour.
Charlie Anonsen, owner of the Scademia and one of the first tour-boat operators in the province, has donated a $3,000 purse to be divided between the winning men and women’s crews. The championship race will be called the Scademia in honour of Anonsen’s outstanding contribution.
The event will consist of three races, with four punts in each race. The first race will be the men’s, involving two Townie and two Bay teams. The second race will be the women’s, again involving two Townie and Bay crews. The top Bay and Townie men’s and women’s crews will advance to the Scademia championship.
The Narrows Group has purchased a championship punt – two-time winner of the Great Fogo Island Punt Race and winner of the first annual Grand Punt Race — to raise money through a ticket drive, with the draw scheduled for the day of the punt race.
“Last year’s Grand Punt Race was a highlight of the summer – even though our Townie pride was crushed,” says St. John’s South-Mount Pearl MP Ryan Cleary, chair of the Grand Punt Race organizing committee. “This year’s race will build on that success.”
“The Grand Punt Race is focused on drawing attention to the desperate state of The Narrows and raising money towards turning it around,” says Mark Hiscock, chair of The Narrows Group.
“The race will also draw attention to a mainstay of the traditional fishery – the punt, and ongoing efforts to preserve the art of wooden-boat building.”
The Narrows Group has teamed up again this year with the Shorefast Foundation, organizers of the Great Fogo Island Punt Race, To There and Back to put off the event.
See you at the punt races.