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Door County Maritime Museum’s “Float Your Boat” Challenge

Door County Maritime Museum wants you to bring Door County’s maritime history and technology to life, even during this time of quarantine, and build boats for the new online competition. In partnership with the Peninsula Pulse newspaper, DCMM is launching the “Float Your Boat!” paper and cardboard boat-building challenge. We are asking students and anyone else who is interested to create, float, and share their boats with us online, using #dcmaritime. Full challenge details will be printed in the Peninsula Pulse newspaper on May 15.

This new program is a stand-in for the Cardboard Regatta competition the Museum launched in May 2019 with Door County middle school students. Cardboard Regatta teaches students engineering, problem-solving and teamwork. Anyone who wants to be part of the challenge has until May 20 to create, float and submit their creations online. The “Float Your Boat!” results will be posted on the Pulse and DCMM Facebook pages and Instagram on Friday, May 22 – National Maritime Day. 

There are three categories of boats for your crew to try to build:

1) Newspaper: Use only newspaper to fold into a boat-like shape that will float in your kitchen sink – no tape or glue;

2) Cardboard: This is a floating and weighted challenge. Use cardboard, adhesives like paper glue or tape, and create a boat-like shape that will float, and test how many pennies it will hold and still float;

3) Freeform: Use a combination of newspaper, cardboard, and adhesives to create a floating vessel. Then add pennies to see how much weight it will hold and still float. 

Creativity is key to this challenge – use boat types like schooners, pontoons or amphiboats for inspiration! Hold sea trials in your kitchen sink and take pictures or video of your boats floating, timing the float and adding weights until they sink. All video and picture entries must be posted online to Facebook or Instagram with #dcmaritime by Wednesday, May 20. (Under 18? Please get parents’ permission to post video/photos if you’re in them.) 

Fun additional activity: Creeks in Door County are full of water right now, and following your boat down a creek is a lot of fun! (These also make fun videos!) To ask questions, message Door County Maritime Museum on Facebook or Instagram, or email [email protected]

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