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Solar Boat Regatta

Looking for something fun to do this weekend?  The weather is looking to be great, so why not head out to the Solar Boat Regatta?  

Student and adult teams from across Minnesota will compete in the Minnesota Renewable Energy Society (MRES) 20th Annual Solar Boat Regatta this Saturday, May 19, at Lake Phalen in St. Paul. The event runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Lake Phalen Beach House.

Students build or adapt boats to run on solar power for the event, which includes speed, slalom and endurance races. For the first time, an elementary school team will race in the 2012 Regatta. At 9 a.m., a solar-powered pontoon boat will give free rides to the public. The Nick Hass Trio will provide live music.

"We are expecting 20 student boats racing in the event to celebrate our 20th anniversary of Solar Boat Regatta this year," said Doug Shoemaker, the MRES event organizer. "In 1992, the first Solar Boat Regatta in the U.S. was started here in Minnesota, and we've carried on the tradition for 20 years."

The solar boat races are designed to educate students about solar energy, design and engineering. The boats make use of the sun's radiation, which generates electricity and is either stored in a battery or used directly to run the boat's electric motor. No other power source is allowed in the races.

The Lake Phalen Beach House is located at1400 Phalen Drive, St. Paul.
The event is free and open to the public.

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