Menomonie Regatta

speedy boat race zooming towards Lake Menomin

Brett Bachman


Outboard hydroplane racing has gained fame over the last decade in suburbia with the popular video game Hydro Thunder. In arcades all over the country, preteens love to cruise at outrageous speeds in tiny virtual boats all over the waterways of the world. And fortunately for those speed demons living in the Chippewa Valley, the real thing is going to take place in Menomonie over Memorial Day weekend. 3M and the Menomonie Chamber of Commerce have teamed up to bring you the first annual 3M Menomonie Regatta, part of the US Title Series in outboard hydroplane racing. Speeds of more than 100mph will be on display while entertainment, food, and a festive atmosphere will reign. Lake Menomin will be the center of the universe for speed enthusiasts of all types on May 28 and 29, with free admission for spectators the entire time. For those unfamiliar with the sport of hydroplane racing, here’s a quick rundown. Instead of floating like the conventional boats that we think of, these rad little devices get going so fast that they literally hydroplane indefinitely over the top of the water. Representatives from the USTS (the hydroplane racing governing body) are holding a “show and tell” open house on the evening of May 27 at Wakanda Park, where any lingering questions will be answered. For anyone who sat in an arcade booth as a kid and dreamed of this day, mark your calendars.

3M Menomonie Regatta • May 28-29 • Lake Menomin, Menomonie • FREE • ustitleseries.org