CALDWELL — Kayaks built with cardboard and duct tape raced down Indian Creek in Caldwell Saturday.
Around turns and down small drops, boaters passed each other in brightly painted vessels bearing goofy names. Theron Lindsey, 11, took a spill during the race while in the lead. After crashing into some rocks and falling out of his boat, Theron lost his paddle. Instead of giving up, he began steering his boat with his hands.
Theron lost his lead in the race but still came in fourth overall. His small blue kayak sat in a wet pile on the bank after the race. First place went to Gary Young and Collete Hoglund of Twin Falls. Their boat was named Mellow Yellow and came out of the creek unharmed.
Young, a retired engineer, said he built the boat in six days and tested it out in the Snake River before traveling to Caldwell for the race. Hoglund, who started kayaking almost 15 years ago, steered Mellow Yellow to the finish line.
“I built a shorter one but Collete thought it was a little squirrely, so I built this one,” Young said.
The Cardboard Kayak Race is arguably the most popular event at the annual Indian Creek Festival in Caldwell. Hundreds of Canyon County residents enjoyed food, live jazz music, races and vendors Friday and Saturday in the heart of Caldwell.
The festival is hosted by the city of Caldwell and is a way for the city to bring in new visitors to the downtown area. Local schools, businesses and organizations set up shop at the festival. Rose Winder of Nampa said Saturday was her first time selling her homemade wire jewelry at the event.
“From what I’ve seen, the festival is cool,” she said.
Another event at the festival is the rubber duck race held by the Caldwell High School Band Booster Club. Leslie Arellano, a member of the club, said festival goers could purchase a rubber duck to be raced Saturday afternoon in Indian Creek. The duck that takes first place won $200, second place took home $150, third place took $50 and other winners took home tickets to the Caldwell Fine Arts Performing Center and the Caldwell High School Band Showcase on Sept. 26.
Arellano said the booster club has been hosting the duck race for five years. All the money helps support the Caldwell High School marching band.
“It’s to celebrate Caldwell and bring everybody out,” she said. “I like that Caldwell is small. It’s a slower pace. I wish there was more to do here, but I think that’s what Indian Creek is trying to do is get people to come out and do more in the community.”