By John Lynds
The East Boston Neighborhood of Affordable Housing (NOAH) will kick off the Third Annual Battle of Noddle Island Regatta and Re-enactment on Memorial Day to mark the significance that the Battle of Chelsea Creek played in the American Revolutionary War.
The event will be held on Monday, May 29 at 10 a.m. at LoPresti Park with the launch of the kayak that will sail to the Condor Street Urban Wild. Then from 12 noon to 3 p.m. there will be a whole host of activities at the Condor Street Urban Wild.
“The event consists of two main parts. The first is a kayak fleet that starts at LoPresti and sails up the Chelsea Creek to the Condor Street Urban Wild,” said NOAH’s Community Engagement Coordinator Colin McGinnis. “Then, once everyone’s at the Urban Wild, our celebration begins. At the Urban Wild we have a number of different activities for all ages, such as free kayaking and kayaking lessons, free food, music, and activity tables. During the celebration we also perform a re-enactment of the Battle of Noddle Island. It’s one of our biggest yearly events, and it’s a great opportunity for the community to come together and remember a part of East Boston’s Revolutionary history.”
McGinnis said In regards to the activity tables, NOAH will offer a range of things for everyone to do.
“We’ll have face painting, kite making, model boat building, and much more,” she said. “This year the New England Aquarium is bringing their Traveling Tidal Pool.”
Last year’s Regatta entertained over 250 people with more than 100 enjoying salt water kayaking. Organizers hope this year’s event will serve many more.
The Battle of Noddle Island took place 242 years ago on Noddle Island (now East Boston) and the Chelsea Creek. On May 27, 1775 the HMS Diana experienced unfavorable winds while exchanging fire with colonial land forces located in Eastie under John Stark. Rowboats began to tow her to safety, but the rowers were forced to leave their task under heavy fire. Diana drifted and ran aground on the Chelsea shore.
The battle ended with victorious colonial forces capturing the British war vessel and plundering its cannons, supplies and mast and lighting it ablaze in the Creek.
Organizers see the Battle of Noddle Island Regatta as a matter of national importance and its celebration as a perfect kick-off to the summer outdoor season, not only for Eastie, Chelsea and Revere residents, but one day for the entire region.
McGinnis said volunteers can still sign up online by visiting https://form.jotform.us/71035436438152.