Rescheduled Pittsburgh Three Rivers Regatta returns to the Allegheny River

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
3 August 2016

AUG. 5
Music, Point State Park
Noon-1 p.m.: The Delaneys, Point State Park
5: 45-6:45 p.m.: Good Brother Earl, Point State Park
7: 15-8:15 p.m.: Better Than Ezra, Point State Park
8: 30-9:30 p.m.: Gin Blossoms, Point State Park
On the Allegheny River
Dragonboats: Noon-2 p.m.
Jet Ski Stunt Show: 2:30, 5, 7:30 and 8:30 p.m.
Venture Outdoors Kayak Interactive: 5:30 p.m.
ALCOSAN 3 Rivers Proud Boat Parade: 9:30-10:30 p.m
BMX Stunt Show: noon, 5:30 and 8 p.m., North Shore Riverwalk
Xpogo Stunt Show: 12:30, 6 and 8:30 p.m., North Shore Riverwalk
Frisbee Dogs: 1:30 and 4 p.m., Point State Park
Red Bull Air Force Skydive: 5 p.m., Point State Park
AUG. 6
Music, Point State Park
Noon-1 p.m.: Lovebettie Acoustic Duet
2-3: 30 p.m.: The Brighton Boys
4-5: 30 p.m.: Turnpike Gardens
6-7: 30 p.m.: The Defibulators
8-9: 30 p.m.: American Authors
10-11 p.m.: Beauty Slap
On the Allegheny River
F-Lights, F1 Powerboat Trials: Noon-2:30 p.m. and 4-6 p.m.
Jet Ski Stunt Show: 2:30 , 6, 9:30 p.m.
Pitt Ohio Anything That Floats Race: 3-4 p.m.:
Gateway Clipper Races: 7:30-8 p.m.
BMX Stunt Show: 2:30 , 6:30, 8:30 p.m., North Shore Riverwalk
Xpogo Stunt Show: 3, 7, 9 p.m., North Shore Riverwalk
Red Bull Air Force Skydive: 4-4:30 p.m., Point State Park
AUG. 7
Music, Point State Park
Noon-1 p.m.: The Dorals
1: 30-2:30 p.m.: Kardasz Brothers
3-4 p.m.: Andy Davis Band
4: 30-5:30 p.m.: Sydney Hutchko
6-7 p.m.: NOMaD
8-9 p.m.: Rodney Atkins
On the Allegheny River
F-Lights Powerboat Finals: Noon-1:30 p.m. and 5:30-6:30 p.m.
Jet Ski Stunt Show: 2 and 4:30 p.m.
Venture Outdoors Kayak Interactive: 2:30-4:30 p.m.
Frisbee Dogs: 1, 2:30 and 4 p.m., Point State Park
BMX Stunt Show: 1:30, 3, 5 and 7 p.m., North Shore Riverwalk
Xpogo Stunt Show: 2, 3:30, 5:30 and 7:30 p.m., North Shore Riverwalk
Red Bull Air Force Skydive: 8:30 p.m., Point State Park
Fireworks: 9:30 p.m., Purple Rain Fireworks & FX Tribute to Prince by Pyrotecnico
The boats are back and the weather looks fine for this weekend's EQT Pittsburgh Three Rivers Regatta. Heavy rains forced organizers to cancel the water activities at the 2015 Regatta, because of debris in the Allegheny River. Moving the festival from the July 4th weekend to August hopefully means drier weather and definitely means another summer celebration weekend and, of course, more fireworks.
Organizers estimate a half million people will take in activities at the three-day festival, from Aug. 5 to 7. Some will be searching out the F1 Powerboat races, while others will be heading to Point State Park for a full line-up of live music. And if you just want to eat, head to the Roberto Clemente Bridge, where a variety of food trucks will line the span each day, along with a marketplace of arts and crafts. Or take in a view of the whole event from the “Wheel of Lights,” a giant gondola Ferris Wheel in Point State Park.

One year after Pittsburgh's Three Rivers Regatta canceled all water activities due to hazardous river conditions, some of the world's fastest boats will come racing back to the Allegheny River at speeds exceeding 100 mph.
On Aug. 6 and 7, the Regatta will host the United States Formula 1 Powerboat Race Series, dubbed as the “most exciting race series on water.” The race includes missile-shaped boats, called “tunnel hull catamarans,” which will be raced around an obstacle course of buoys in the Allegheny River.
“Our boats can hit 120 faster than any car can hit 60,” says boat racer Carlos Mendana, 25, of Miami, Fla., who will be competing.
The races will be separated into two classes of competitions featuring different boat sizes: the classic Formula 1 Powerboat Race and the Formula 1 Light race, which features more agile versions of the Formula 1 boats with shorter tunnels and reduced horsepower.
Qualifying races for both will be on Aug. 6, with the championships on Aug. 7.
The U.S. Formula 1 series has roots in Pittsburgh; its inaugural race took place at the 1982 Pittsburgh Regatta. The race was scheduled to return to Pittsburgh for the first time in eight years in last year's Regatta, but was canceled because of what public safety officials called hazardous river conditions caused by heavy rainfall.
“As a series, we are so excited to come back to Pittsburgh,” Mendana says. “It's a great venue where the fans are always especially excited to come out and see us.”

Performers will take the stage starting at noon each day in Point State Park. Local bands, like LoveBettie, NoMAD and Beauty Slap, will fill several slots, but the headliners are some recognizable national acts.
Better Than Ezra, 7:15 p.m. Aug. 5: If you're only going to have one hit, it might as well be good — literally. Better Than Ezra's “Good” reached No. 1 on Billboard's modern rock charts in 1995. Its thumping bass intro, a mesmerizing hook and buzzing guitars that dart in and out made for one of the most memorable songs of the era. The New Orleans-based band released a series of albums from 1996 to 2001 — “Friction, Baby,” “How Does Your Garden Grow?” and “Closer” — that were very good but may have eluded casual fans. The band has undergone multiple personnel changes over the years, but charismatic lead singer Kevin Griffin and bassist Joe Rundell remain from the original Better Than Ezra lineup.
Gin Blossoms, 8:30 p.m. Aug. 5: The Gin Blossoms are the embodiment of jangle pop, the branch of rock music featuring chiming guitars and bubbly melodies. Hailing from Tempe, Ariz., the band came to prominence in 1992 with the release of the album “New Miserable Experience,” which yielded the hit singles “Hey Jealousy,” “Found Out About You,” and “Allison Road.” The band's success was colored by tragedy: Founding member and guitarist Doug Hopkins, who wrote “Hey Jealousy” and “Found Out About You,” committed suicide after being dismissed from the band in 1993. Despite that dark moment, the Gin Blossoms have soldiered on. Original members Robin Wilson (vocals), Bill Leen (bass) and guitarist Jesse Valenzuela still perform around 120 dates a year across the country.
American Authors, 8 p.m. Aug. 6: Even if you don't know the band American Authors, you've probably heard them. The indie band's single, “The Best Day of My Life,” was prominently featured in a commercial for home improvement retailer Lowe's and in the opening sequence of ESPN's coverage of the World Series of Poker in 2013-14. It's easy to see why the song is so popular — who wouldn't want to have the best day of a life? But American Authors is more than just a one-trick band. The music is a blend of pop and rock, driving melodies and soaring choruses. A new single, “What We Live For,” (from the album of the same name) has an anthem-like quality that almost guarantees it's going to be heard everywhere.
Rodney Atkins, 8 p.m. Aug. 7: Rodney Atkins doesn't do glitz and glamour. In almost every video, the country musician from Knoxville, Tenn., wears a battered ballcap and drives a pickup truck that's seen better days. Atkins simple approach is reflected in his music. It's direct and to the point, no flourishes or artifice. His singles “In America” or “ If You're Going Through Hell (Before the Devil Even Knows) ” are guitar-driven songs of the road. He's had six No. 1 singles on the country charts. Atkins' new release, “Take a Back Road,” with the single of the same name, is cut from the same cloth as his previous material.

It's a 'Burgh thing: No city celebration is complete without fireworks.
The Regatta's pyrotechnic finale Aug. 7 will begin at 9:30 p.m. with the theme “Purple Rain,” in memory of rock star Prince, who died April 21.
Produced by New Castle-based Pyrotecnico, the “Purple Rain” show at Point State Park will feature special-effects fireworks choreographed to some of Prince's most memorable songs, including “When Doves Cry,” “Little Red Corvette” and “1999.”

The Regatta's boats may be the main draw, but to get the full experience, you might have to look up (bring sunglasses). Or down. Or, well, bouncing around.
• The Red Bull Air Force Skydive team is world famous for base-jumping and wing-suit skydiving aerobatic maneuvers. They'll make the jump at 5 p.m. Aug. 5, 4 p.m. Aug. 6 and 8:30 p.m. Aug. 7.
• The Xpogo extreme pogo stick jumpers just had their Pogopalooza championship event in Pittsburgh, and will show off their skills on the North Shore Riverwalk. These aren't the rusty old things you have in your garage — they're high-tech machines that enable 10-foot launches into the air, backflips and other stunts.
• BMX bike stunts are a pretty familiar part of the Regatta by now. These athletes will exhibit their array of backflips, frontflips, taiwhips and “Superman seat-grabs” on the North Shore Riverwalk.
• Jet Ski Freestyle Stunt Show performers will use the Jetovator to fly up to 30 feet in the air and dive 10 feet below the water, all while doing flips, monkey jumps, submarines, 180s, barrel rolls, 360s, and firehose fountains of water.

Many of us remember the beach diversion of filling a pail with moist sand, turning it over and shaping it with a Popsicle stick. That was literally child's play, although often with parents' help, but one of the Regatta's favorite attractions takes that same principle and runs with it on a bigger scale in every way.
Sandsational Sand Sculpture will use 150 tons of sand to create a tribute to the bicentennial of the incorporation of Pittsburgh as a city. You'll be able to watch as it's being created and find out whether it will include a blast furnace or Forbes Field.
The artists will work noon to 10 p.m. Aug. 5 to 7 at Point State Park.

Beyond the sights of watercraft on the three rivers, the Regatta offers a boatload of fun on land.
The Kids Zone at Point State Park will be a buzz of activities all three days, starting at noon.
Among the activities will be creating “ships in a bottle,” sponsored by the Children's Museum of Pittsburgh.
Children can be artistic by adding their personal touch to the Regatta mural. They also will be introduced to the wonder of Amp'd Robotics. And there will be special entertainment for the kids.

It's surprising how entertaining it is to watch homemade boats sink in the Allegheny River. At 3 p.m. Aug. 6, boats made from materials found around the house such as cardboard, wood, PVC, duct tape, milk jugs, Saran Wrap, old T-shirts, outdoor furniture, old bikes and pool noodles will take to the rivers for the Anything That Floats Race.
Oars, paddles and sails are allowed and pedal power is OK, but no motors, foam, inflatable rafts or pool toys are allowed. Up to eight people are allowed per boat.
The winning team can take home to $2,500 for the charity of its choice. It's still not too late to sign up.

The bridge will be closed to traffic throughout the Regatta so it can be filled with food trucks and handmade wares from local artisans. It also will allow for foot traffic to the Pirates' games against the Reds on Friday and Saturday evening and Sunday afternoon.
Each day, Food Truck Row will feature the Pittsburgh Pierogi truck, BRGR, Giant Eagle chicken truck, Stickler's Ice Pop Co., Papa Wood, Pita Pan, Kona Ice, as well as traditional festival food vendors.
The marketplace and food will be available starting at noon each day.