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Boat races highlight FMU’s Arts International

April 14, 2019 GMT

FLORENCE, S.C. – Francis Marion University students raced cardboard boats and pedal carts during the Arts International festival Saturday afternoon on the main campus.

In addition to the races, event attendees could experience an array of performances and local artisans and vendors, as well as try international cuisines.

Several clubs and some classes took part in the cardboard regatta in Durant Pond behind the Lee Nursing Building.

For the event, participants constructed cardboard boats to race across the pond. Students won awards, such as the fastest boat, team spirit, best creative design and the most spectacular sinking. The final race of the day was the pirate race, in which students raced and tried to tip over other boats.

Math club members Elizabeth Floyd and Jonathan Britt raced together in a pirate-themed boat.

“It felt really fun to be a part of something that’s just for fun that’s not academic,” Floyd said. “You get to be a part of a team and be creative and just use all of our skills and stuff together.”

Britt said the team members calculated the buoyancy of their boat, named “The Temperamental Transcendental,” before the race, and it could hold 700 pounds. The team named the boat based off the number pi because pi is transcendental, Britt said.

The math club won the “team spirit” award.

The “clipper ship” award went to the “Wingineers” by the engineering students. The marketing club students won the creative design award for their boat, “AMAseas the day.” The intramural council won the “Titanic” award for the most spectacular sinking.

The society of physics students won the pirate race.

For the first year, students could take place in the Swamp Fox 200, a pedal cart relay racem up and down Alumni Drive.

The FMU women’s soccer team won the spirit award. An interdisciplinary student team, “Faster Than the Speed of Light,” won first place; the FMU women’s soccer team won second place; and the FMU orientation leaders, “O-Team,” won third place.

Christopher Kennedy, associate provost for academic affairs and director of graduate programs at FMU, said the university has been trying to add more events to draw students to take part in Arts International.

“We are trying to add more things to make it bigger and better each year,” Kennedy said.

In addition to adding the Swamp Fox 200, the university also brought back a chalk-drawing competition.

Throughout the day, event attendees could watch performances inside Chapman Auditorium and outside on the lawn. International food vendors served attendees from countries, such as Germany, Italy, Japan and Brazil.