UPDATE: Everyone Enjoying The Riverfront Roar Without The Boat Races

By: Rich Donnelly, Shannon Houser, Stanley Jefferson Email
By: Rich Donnelly, Shannon Houser, Stanley Jefferson Email

UPDATE 7-13-13 5:25 PM

Despite the boat races being cancelled, it didn't stop people from enjoying the Riverfront Roar in downtown Marietta Saturday afternoon.

The boat races were cancelled this year due to the heavy rain and debris in the Ohio River.

People still got to enjoy food from local vendors, live entertainment and a play area for the kids.

We asked some people how they're enjoying the riverfront roar without seeing the races.

"Even though the boats aren't racing, it's still just a great day to just come and enjoy with your family and that's why I'm here," says Justin Riffle.

"We were disappointed at first but we had fun going to the different shops and eating at the restaurants here," added Molly Riffle.

"It's still fun to walk around and see all the stuff that's going on and to see friends if they're here," replied Hallie Somerville.

Later on Saturday night, people got to see some fireworks on the Ohio River Levee.
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UPDATE: 7/12/2013 3:30 PM

The boats may not be racing, but there's still a lot of action planned for the Riverfront Roar this weekend.

"It's really a shame because we had 30 some boats and the drivers were really anxious to come here to go after the increased prize," says Riverfront Roar Chairman, Gary Williams.

The races are off. Heavy rains and flooding are to blame.

"A lot of debris in the water, very high, fast moving water, unsafe conditions for the drivers. That's our number one concern is making sure the race not only goes on but is safe for the drivers and the boats," Williams adds.

But the Riverfront Roar is still going on this weekend. Live entertainment and new events will make up for the lack of boat racing.

"We've increased our entertainment. Instead of starting on Saturday at 5:00, it's starting at 1:00," says Williams.

There's also a Kids Zone this weekend, with police and fire demonstrations and guest appearances from zoo animals.

The boats may not be in the water, but you can still get an up close look at the river racers and even meet the drivers.

"We are going to have a couple of drivers from Columbus coming down just to exhibit their boats for their fans, sign autographs, take pictures, just to generate anticipation for next year," says Williams.

The canceled races will have some effect on the eight vendors who decided to show up this year.

"We're definitely not going to make as much as when the boats are here, but we're hoping to make a little. I'm from here and I can't imagine not supporting my hometown," says Jody Pritchard from Jody's Carnival Treats.

But organizers say overall, the support from sponsors and the community has been overwhelming.

"We're really happy with the feedback people have been giving us, saying 'we're going to come down and enjoy the music and enjoy the party and come to the Pepsi Pavilion and enjoy the Beer Garden and have a good time," says Williams.

The fireworks show will also still go on Saturday at 9:30. Williams says the show will be the biggest ever. You can view a full list of events by clicking on the hot button.
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Due to water projections and debris in the Ohio River from the recent storms the powerboat races at the Riverfront Roar have been cancelled.

The Buckeye Outboard Association recommended that the races be cancelled as a safety precaution. The powerboats race at an extremely high rate of speed and poor conditions could pose a problem.

The races will not be re-scheduled this year but will return next summer.

The festival itself will still go on as planned this weekend. An updated entertainment schedule is expected to be released later today.


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