Dr. Lloyd Westby hoofs it up the beach ahead of Robbie Kelm in the first heat of the Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race. Over $20 was raised through the event. (Mark Brett - Western News)

Bathtub race returns to Summerland for sixth year

Fundraising event will be held Aug. 22, 2020

For the sixth year, the Summerland Ogopogo Bathtub Race will be held in Summerland this summer.

The race will take place on Saturday, Aug. 22.

The annual race was started by the Summerland Yacht Club as a fundraiser to help equip the new Penticton Regional Hospital tower.

The event raised more than $126,000, exceeding its goal.

READ ALSO: Okanagan Ogopogo bathtub race fundraising efforts over the top

READ ALSO: Okanagan Great Ogogogo Bathtub Race beats fundraising goal

“We are extremely happy with the fundraising success and our goals were more than achieved,” said Jim Cavin, treasurer of the yacht club and one of the driving forces behind the project. “We were not going to continue with the race until the Rotary Club of Summerland and the Summerland Chamber of Commerce approached us to continue with the event.”

The organizing group is now looking to have the race sanctioned and on the bathtub racing circuit.

The preliminary plans are to expand the event to a community, family friendly, summer festival at Powell Beach.

“We are looking to create a day-long event based around the racing. Pancake breakfasts, barbecue lunches, bouncy houses, live music, food trucks, face painting, lots of family fun for everyone,” said Lisa Sanders, event production manager with the Summerland Chamber of Commerce.

A series of celebrity races is also being considered.

“Maybe we can have the valley Mayors go at it head to head in a short course race and then have competing companies racing tubs along the lake,” said David Hull, executive director of the Summerland Chamber of Commerce

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Robbie Kelm reaches for the finish bell and was the eventual winner of the A division of the Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race Saturday at Powell Beach Park. (Mark Brett - Western News)

Spectators watch as the A division racers prepare for the start of the race. (Mark Brett - Western News)

The skull and crossbones flag flies on Powell Beach at the Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race. (Mark Brett - Western News)

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