Ucluelet will host its first Soapbox Derby in roughly 50 years this weekend as over 30 kids have signed up to zip their home-made race cars down the bottom of Bay Street. (Photo courtesy of Mayco Noel)

Ucluelet Soapbox Derby revved up to return

Over 30 West Coast kids geared up to race down Bay Street this Saturday in Ucluelet.

Over 30 youngsters will zoom down Bay Street in DIY soapbox race cars this weekend.

Come watch the derby action unfold on Saturday, Sept. 21 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the bottom of Bay Street and Cedar Road.

Ucluelet Mayor Mayco Noël teamed up with councillor Lara Kemps to rejuvenate this community event they both fondly remember participating in as kids.

“It’s one of those things I always threw around over the last number of years going, ‘Hey you know we should do it’, and then I threw it out towards Lara and I knew she would take it from the concept and actually pushing it to make it happen,” said Noël.

“We used to do this in the seventies. It’s just fun parading down a hill,” said Kemps. “We need to bring these community youth events back as part of our community spirit.”

For this go around, they said the derby racetrack will be lined with hay bales and helmets are a must.

“There was no hay [in our] time and no helmets,” recalls Kemps.

She said derby spectators can look forward to ice cream, hot dogs, and music.

Mayor Noël encouraged everyone to show up and have fun.

“We’re just going to let the kids get as many laps down the hill,” he said. “We are looking for people to help. We are kind of winging it a little bit, but we are just looking to have fun.”

Ukee dad Kent Furey spent a couple days with his son Khan, 7, building their soapbox car named ‘The Terminator’.

“I’m pretty stoked that Ucluelet is putting on something like this. It’s a great way to spend an afternoon together,” said Furey, adding that he had a good time showing his youngster how to use power tools.

“This is Khan’s first derby ever. I hope we can carry it on as a family tradition,” he said.


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