Harborfest is Norfolk’s largest annual festival, and it is kicking off the summer season June 9-11, 2023, celebrating the area’s great maritime heritage. Town Point Park and the Elizabeth River will be alive with festival food & drink, live music, tall sailing ships, arts and crafts, fireworks, nautical-themed activities, and a fun-seeking audience that loves to interact with our boat builders.
Best yet, the ASNE-Sika Ultimate Build-A-Boat Challenge will be showcased June 10-11, 2023, as we celebrate the 27th Anniversary of this great event!
Check out this Build-A-Boat Presentation and Race Day Video from 2022.
There is no entry fee for the teams, but personal donations to help cover the cost for this event, and support the ASNE mission, are encouraged and greatly appreciated. Donations are tax deductible. Donation Form
Corporate sponsorships are greatly appreciated! Please complete the Sponsorship Form. Sponsorship Form
This competition combines creativity, craftsmanship and boat handling skills in a unique event that is both challenging and entertaining. Below are the event details. Please also see 2023 Guidance for Boatbuilders for detailed instructions.
IT’S FREE… no entry fee for participants. The American Society of Naval Engineers (ASNE) and Sika Corp are the Event Sponsors.
Construction material kits are predefined and provided to teams at no cost.
Space is limited. Twenty-five (25) two-person teams will be accepted, on a first-come basis.
Teams submit application early to secure a spot, and later submit their design 2 weeks in advance.
Bring your own power tools, hand tools, a smile, family and friends and a great attitude.
The building & outfitting phases take place on Saturday. Arrive by 8:30 am, finish around 5:00 pm. Stay for the evening concerts and fireworks if you can… it’s a blast.
Races (3 heats) take place on Sunday. Plan to arrive at 1:00 pm for a catered lunch and finish around 5:00.
Awards will be presented for Best Design, Fastest Built, Race Results 1st – 3rd Place, Most Whimsical, and Fan Favorite. We reserve the right to create other categories as we feel inspired.
Prizes include Sikaflex Trophies, commemorative medals, bling and power tools!
Building time is limited to 4 hours (but we do not enforce this. It’s a guideline… just be safe!).
Painting the boat is critical to ensure structural integrity during the water-born portion of the event. And beyond a basic coat of paint, creative decorating (outfitting) is absolutely encouraged. Decorating can start immediately upon completion of the boat construction. Families, friends and supporters are welcome to help decorate after your power tools are safely put away.
The American Society of Naval Engineers will commit 100% of net proceeds to funding the mission areas of ASNE, including engineering scholarships and STEM programs.
For ASNE this is not JUST fun, but also a community outreach and education program.
We promote awareness of naval engineering, shipbuilding and ship repair professions that are the life blood of the Tidewater region.
Teams and Volunteers are encouraged to stop and interact with the crowd at every opportunity.
To Participate as a Boat Builder, Use this Form to Register your Team:Event Details_Team Entry Application_Donation and Sponsorship Form_2023.docx
For more information, contact Mike D'Amato at firstname.lastname@example.org.