Memorial Day weekend on the Redwood Coast is not quite like any other. For over 45 years now a human powered art race makes it way through Humboldt County over this 3 day holiday weekend. The Kinetic Sculpture Race of Northern California features huge pieces of unique and interesting people-propelled art. These contraptions travel 42 miles along land, sand, water and mud, to compete for nothing more than glory. It is quite the spectacle to be seen.
It all began back in 1969 when artist Hobart Brown challenged Ferndale artist Jack Mays to a race down Ferndale’s Main street. Since, the Kinetic Sculpture Race event has grown and has now became an annual attraction that draws people from all over the world every Memorial Day weekend.
Day 1 of this Kinetic Grand Championship, otherwise known as the “Triathlon of the Art World, begins at noon on Saturday in downtown Arcata. This kick off is a great opportunity to spectate as all of the racers make their way around the plaza square so you can get an up close and personal view of these unique vehicle (a great way for families with children to attend). The Kinetic Sculpture race then make its way to the Manila Dunes for a sand trek!
Day 2 begins at the waterfront in Eureka, CA on the Humboldt Bay, where “Kinetic Pilots” put their crafts floating abilities to the test. And finally, on Day 3 the racer make their way from the mouth of the Eel River, through Morgan slough, and back onto dry land where they then cross the finish line on historic Main street of the Victorian Village of Ferndale, CA.
Anybody can sign up to participate in the Kinetic Sculpt Race as long as they have an idea, the ability to make it come to life, and a good team to help it all move along. But honestly, it is almost equally as fun to just watch these works of art pedaling along roads, the beach, and Humboldt Bay! As Hobart Brown himself put it, it’s all about “Adults having fun so children will desire to grow older.”
Words can’t fully describe so see more at Kinetic Grand Championship Video or better yet started planning to see the race in person this Memorial Day Weekend which falls on May 27, 28, 29, of 2017. Check out vacation rentals Northern California style for the perfect Memorial Weekend getaway.
Author: Dawn Marie
Travel Passionista, Marketing Maven, and Guest Contributor.