The Oklahoma Regatta Festival is going virtual!
Oklahoma City’s Head of the Oklahoma regatta has been selected by USRowing as one of the nation’s five largest regattas to participate in the USRowing Virtual Fall, an alternative to in-person racing that keeps the competition going even in a year where large gatherings aren’t possible. USRowing is the governing body for the sport of rowing in the United States.
“As we were considering the best way to move forward this year, we were honored to be invited to participate in USRowing’s virtual series,” said Mike Knopp, RIVERSPORT executive director. “We’re also offering some unique live opportunities throughout the month of October including a smaller Oklahoma invitational for athletes rowing singles.”
The Head of the Oklahoma virtual race experience will recreate the experience of rowing on the Oklahoma River with advanced graphics, the ability to have a coxswain steering the boat, multiple race views including coxswain and spectator, officiating and live time splits.
“We are hoping to also be able to offer OGE NightSprints as part of the virtual package,” Knopp said. “We want to maintain the momentum we’ve had for so many years and we know crews across the country come to Oklahoma for the night racing. If we can pull it off, we will.”
RIVERSPORT will also host Corporate Rowing League and Youth Rowing League end-of-season races featuring athletes in singles.
“We appreciate the loyalty of all the rowers and coaches who’ve come to Oklahoma City to race over the years and hope it will allow even more people to experience our event,” Knopp said. “We’re going to do everything possible to give you a great virtual racing experience!”
Registration for the Head of the Oklahoma is scheduled to open mid September.
The Head of the Fish (Saratoga), Head of the Hooch (Chattanooga), Head of the Ohio (Pittsburgh), Head and Head of the Schuylkill (Philadelphia) are also participating in the USRowing virtual series.
Please contact Megan Duffy for information about racing.
Oklahoma Regatta Festival History
Established in 2004, the Oklahoma Regatta Festival takes place annually during the first or second weekend in October in the Boathouse District, downtown on the Oklahoma River. The three-day celebration of rowing, kayaking, dragon boating, whitewater rafting and family fun includes the Oklahoma City University Head of the Oklahoma race, OGE NightSprints, and a family festival featuring food trucks, fireworks, beer gardens, a front row seat for all the racing – and RIVERSPORT Adventures!
The annual OCU Head of the Oklahoma includes 2.5 mile (4k) head racing during the day featuring teams from across the country competing in collegiate, masters, and junior rowing as well as kayak and dragon boat racing.
The 500-meter OGE NightSprints are held on the river after the sun goesdown, creating an electrifying atmosphere for competitors and spectators alike.
Each year the Oklahoma Regatta Festival features special community activities and exhibitions. In 2019, the Outdoor Foundation announced the presentation of a grant at the event followed by the OKC Thrive Outside Expo on Saturday. Local & national organizations showcased hands-on experiences for families to learn about outdoor opportunities.