Media Advisory: It’s baaaack!! The great concrete canoe race set for Saturday at Lake LaSalle

Concrete canoe race on Lake LaSalle.

Students race their concrete canoes in 2009 at Lake LaSalle. Credit: Douglas Levere.

The contest and other family-friendly events are part of a statewide student engineering conference at UB

Release Date: April 13, 2016 This content is archived.


BUFFALO, N.Y. – April is too early for most paddlers in Buffalo, but frigid waters won’t deter 100 or so engineering students from across the state and Canada who aim to win Saturday’s concrete canoe race at Lake LaSalle.

The student teams – from the University at Buffalo, Cornell University, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and 11 other institutions – must design, build and paddle their boats through the lake, where temperatures are still in the 40s.

News media and the public are invited to catch the races, as well as a steel bridge building contest inside Alumni Arena on Friday. Here are the details:

Concrete canoe races

When: The event runs from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 16. The best time to see the races is from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Where: Baird Point at Lake LaSalle.

Where can I park? At the Lake LaSalle lot, behind Alumni Arena (building No. 1 on this map:

The top two teams will be invited to compete in the national competition in Texas in June.

On-site contact: Todd Snyder, an instructor in UB’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and faculty advisor for the UB student chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers, at 645-4006 or

Note: Refreshments and bathrooms will be available at the UB Commons, near Baird Point.

Steel bridge competition

When: The event runs from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday, April 15. The best time to see the contest is from 10 a.m. to noon.

Where: The main gym inside Alumni Arena.

Where can I park? The stadium lot adjacent to UB Stadium, near building No. 44 on this map:

The top two teams will be invited to compete in the national competition in Utah in May.

On-site contact: Cory Nealon, UB media relations, at 645-4614 or

Both contests are part of ASCE’s annual upstate New York student conference, which opens at UB on Thursday with technical presentations. UB last hosted the conference in 2009. Check conference website, hyperlinked above, for additional details and results from the contests.

Media Contact Information

Cory Nealon
Director of Media Relations
Engineering, Computer Science
Tel: 716-645-4614