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My Experience Enjoying the Head of the Charles Festivities

On October 19th and 20th, this year, the Charles River was filled with thousands of crew boats speeding across the water. From high school teenagers to seniors (known as grandmasters in the races), thousands of eager rowers competed, hoping to win one of the most prestigious competitions in the sport.

I explored the festivities on Sunday with a friend, and we first began our adventure at the perfect viewing spot: right before the Western Avenue Bridge. A couple of friends were rowing in a race at 1:45 pm, and we arrived just in time. As we stood along the shore, I couldn’t help but admire the fall leaves. They stood out so perfectly against the brick bridge. Gazing at the view with a turtleneck sweater wrapped around my body and duck boots on my feet truly encaptured New England autumn.

Photo Credit: Cait Meyer

After cheering on our friends, we headed further west towards the Weekes Bridge, where there was far more activity. This time we walked onto the bridge and found an open spot to cheer on the boats returning from the finish line. Before coming to the regatta, I didn’t realize this would be happening, but I’m glad I didn’t miss it. I was able to take some better photos of my friends, since now they were facing me. We hung out on the bridge for awhile just enjoying the view, then decided to continue walking. From food vendors to pop-up stores, and even charging stations, the stretch between the Weekes and Anderson Bridges had plenty to do!

Just walking through the festivities was enjoyable: there were plenty of dogs to love and being surrounded by so much cheering and positivity was a blast. But, we still managed to make a couple of pit stops along our stroll.

Photo Credit: Cait Meyer

First, we browsed the Head of the Charles Apparel Shop; we didn’t explore inside the tent but took our time walking by to check out the gear. Then, we received some coupons from the Rent the Runway pop-up, whose tent was super cute! Right after, we noticed Timberland had a truck where if you signed a pledge to be more sustainable, they give you a kit to grow a small pine tree. We both eagerly signed the pledge, and my pot is currently sitting on my desk. Hopefully, I remember to water it so I get to see my plant actually grow!

Photo Credi: Cait Meyer

After that, we stumbled upon the ATT Charging Station, where they let me charge my phone, an opportunity I jumped on as my phone’s battery was draining at an alarming rate. I left my phone in one of their lockers, and we began our hunt for food. My friend found a Mexican food stand and got a very delicious quesadilla (I didn’t try it, but she vouched for its quality). 

Finally, we decided to head back to campus, a bit too cold and tired to continue our adventure. I heard that the area around the finish line has a lot to do as well, but we didn’t make it there this year. Overall, watching the Head of the Charles Regatta was an amazing experience, and I recommend anyone in the Boston area to take part in the festivities!


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Cait is a junior at Boston University studying International Relations and Journalism. She is excited to continue writing and editing for Her Campus BU this Fall. On-campus, Cait is also a member of the sorority Kappa Alpha Theta where she holds an officer position. Other than writing, Cait loves photography, her cats, and exploring the effects of nuclear proliferation. You can find out more about Cait's plans and goals at www.caitmeyer.com
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