If you happened to glance at Lake Travis on Saturday or Sunday, you might have wondered what was going on. Sure, it was Memorial Day weekend. Makes sense for people to flock to the lake. But why all the sailboats?
For the first time in years, the weather cooperated enough to hold a two-day race the Austin Yacht Club calls the Turnback Canyon Regatta. One sailor, whose team came in fourth in his division Saturday, explained that there has to be enough water in the cove at Bar-K Park to allow the sailboats to tie up overnight.
You may recall the Memorial Day weekend of 2015, when there was too much water (not to mention debris) to hold the race.
This year, after a slight delay when the wind refused to blow early Saturday, the regatta had perfect weather.
After racing Saturday, the sailors set up tents in the park.
Lago Fest was on! A carnival atmosphere without the lines, there were hundreds of vendors from all over Central Texas.
You could buy goat-milk soap and lotion.
Or watch a baby goat from Lazy Day Farm drinking milk.
You could play Frisbee (sorry, “generic plastic disc”; your name just isn’t fun enough).
Or bubble soccer. Bubble soccer!!!
You could ride a little train.
You could rent a kayak or, um, personal watercraft.
Or even take flight in a helicopter.
If you got hungry, Smoky barbecue from Tug’s and spicy Cajun and Creole dishes by Parrain’s Louisiana Kitchen formed the main course, but other vendors offered ripe peaches and fresh-baked cookies for dessert.
The strains of Beatles tunes came from the Eggmen, who popped over from Austin but sound like Liverpudlians. You might also have heard the Latin beats of Hector Ward & The Big Time or the country twang of singer-songwriter Drew Womack.
When it was time to go, a big, clean bus would drop you right at your vehicle five minutes away. No parking hassles at Lago Fest, thanks to CapMetro!
You might have noticed a few sailors taking the bus back with you. Not everybody was up for camping. It’s a good thing those who did have an affinity for water. Thunderstorms Saturday night must have drenched them. Still, they got up and raced back to Hudson’s Bend the next morning.
If this sounds like fun, it’s worth noting that Lago Vista is hosting a similar bash (minus the sailing) on Saturday, July 2, 2016, to celebrate Independence Day, which falls on a Monday this year. See you there?