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CINDY DAY: Regatta Day - ‘weather’ or not

Within an hour of arriving in St. John’s, I came across a “car cozy” on Water Street
Within an hour of arriving in St. John’s, I came across a “car cozy” on Water Street. - Cindy Day

Full disclosure: I’ve only been to Newfoundland once; ever since, I’ve been itching to get back, so I couldn't be more thrilled to spend the week in St. John’s.

It’s a gem of a city that is welcoming, beautiful and unique; those same qualifiers are often used to describe the people here. After a short visit, it’s the kind of place you wish you could call home. 

This week is an especially exciting time in the city. One of the iconic events on the St John’s calendar is celebrating a birthday. The George Street Festival is 35 years old this year. For the uninitiated, George Street is located in the centre of historic downtown St. John’s. The “biggest Little Street in North America” parties for SEVEN straight days, featuring big-name bands, tribute acts and local favourites alike. I’m glad I arrived towards the end this marathon because, I’m older than 35 and, well, you know…

The George Street Festival winds down on the eve of another iconic St. John’s event. Tomorrow, Aug. 7, is Regatta Day. It's a one-day event that is, in fact, a holiday, but not always. It’s a holiday that depends on the weather. City officials meet the morning of the event - which is always scheduled for the first Wednesday of the month – to decide whether or not the holiday will take place. If it’s expected to be too blustery for a rowing competition on the city’s historic Quidi Vidi Lake, off to work you go. Sunshine? Take the day off. 

On that note, I have some wonderful news for those who plan on playing a little Royal Regatta Roulette tonight. That’s a game played the night before the Regatta. Residents of St. John’s have the option to stay at home and have a quiet night or “roll the dice” and PARTY!! That choice has become known as “Regatta Roulette.”

It’s a gamble you might want to take this year since tomorrow’s weather looks lovely.

The Bermuda High has shifted eastward and will ridge up across the Avalon on Wednesday serving up a mix of sun and cloud. The pressure gradient will be light with wind speeds between 12 and 18 km/h. The wind will be from the northwest in the morning then become south-westerly as the day goes on. We’ll be on the cooler side of the high with afternoon temperatures reaching the upper teens.

It’s a beautiful tradition that makes Newfoundland’s Regatta Day one of the coolest holidays on the Canadian calendar. 

Check out videos from Cindy's other road trips:

Cindy Day is the chief meteorologist for SaltWire Network.

A blunt, but effective message, to motorists in St. John's' downtown core.

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