Oh Lydia, Oh Lydia

Anyone remember this post from last May about a fish sculpture in Takoma Park Maryland?

My friend Leah posted the photos of the most amazing bottle cap fish on Facebook a couple years ago and I got obsessed and wanted to make my own…blah blah blah…of course, surprise, I am still working on that project too.

But then, last week, through the wild and wonderful powers of the interwebs, the mysterious origin of the bottle cap fish was reviled when I received an email from Krista…

She is on my front lawn, her name is Lydia Capulet and she ran in the Baltimore Kinetic Sculpture race in 2009 (snakehead). 

All photos courtesy of Krista Weiss Tretick

Turns out, Lydia is more than just a pretty face—she is mode of transportation!

Having never heard of the Baltimore Kinetic Sculpture Race prior to Krista’s email, I was a little confused at first….is it a parade? A boat race? A tandem bicycle competition? An art show?….well, it’s all that and a bag of chips!

From the official website:

Kinetic Sculptures are amphibious, human powered works of art custom built for the race. Each May, the American Visionary Art Museum (AVAM) hosts the East Coast Kinetic Sculpture Race Championship on the shore of Baltimore’s Inner Harbor in central Maryland.  The eight-hour race covers 15 miles—mostly on pavement, but also including a trip into the Chesapeake Bay and through mud and sand.

Now, having read the rules (no seriously y’all, check out the official entry rules) I am all kinds of jealous. The very thought of people getting dressed up and teaming together to build, ride and race using living works of art has me all aflutter… Who thinks of these things? Where do I enter? If I build a giant, water tight sculpture of Lola, will anyone come to race her with me? What if we don’t have a kinetic race where I live? Maybe I can do my own in the bathtub? Yeah, that’s it, the bathtub!

All photos courtesy of Krista Weiss Tretick

Many thanks to Krista for sharing Lydia and introducing me to this amazing event!


  1. says

    I want to marry this.

    Peaches, I think you should start an online-only kinetic sculpture race. All insane craft bloggers will build one. We will all post our pictures and everyone will win!

    Please make a giant Lolabike!!!

  2. says

    1) I will enter.
    2) Now I have that song in my head AND want to watch The Philedelphia Story.
    3) The real picture of the fish guaranteed nightmares tonight. I hate fish.
    4) My word verification is “shmers” which is also the sound I made when I saw the fish photo.

  3. says

    Ha ha ha hee hee to the other comments (especially shmers…that’s funny for some reason…) and the post! An artistic mode of transportation for racing in? Sign me up. It’s crazy and I LOVE it!

  4. says

    This reminded me of Red Bull’s Flug Tag, where people build a glider and launch themselves off of a high structure into a large body of water. I’m hoping to be able to go see the next event in Tampa!

  5. says

    I’m marking my calendar now. I live too close to not see this! Thanks for finding such a weird, but fun activity!

  6. leah says

    dear aunt peaches, i am sorry that i never told you about the kinetic sculpture race. i never did make it to one when i lived in baltimore. not that i am so far away now. i am glad that i put you on track to find out this information via other means.

    i did once go to this amazing milk-carton boat race (race? was it a race? i can’t remember) near st paul. they were these huge amazing structures made out of milk cartons. i will now look for pictures of said event.


  7. leah says

    ah yes. google “aquatennial milk carton boat race.” not as cool as the kinetic sculpture race. but still close and maybe a little closer to you?

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