More than 50,000 people are expected to make their way through the grounds of Quidi Vidi Lake on Wednesday during the 199th Royal St. John’s Regatta, and there is guaranteed to be something for each of them. More than 100 concession stands engulf the shoreline amongst a variety of other vendors and booths, including games, rides, crafts, music and more.
The Anchormen Barbershop Chorus is just one of many groups with a booth set up at the site of the boating competition. Derrick Sheppard, president of the all-male singing group, told The Telegram about their annual appearance at the Regatta while setting up their stand by the lake Tuesday afternoon.
“We sing periodically,” Sheppard said, “but we also have spins, and I think about 300 prize draws throughout the day. People love it, and any profit that we make gets split up between our own organization and local charity.”
With more than 30 men of various ages on the roster, the chorus isn’t the only musical booth set up for the races — the St. John’s Choir will also have one, as well as St. Joseph’s Parish from Petty Harbour.
If you’re not big into music, correctional officers from Her Majesty’s Penitentiary will have their annual spin booth set up, and this year they are excited to include the popular “fidget-spinners” as a prize. Half of the proceeds from the booth will go back into the correctional facility, and the other half will go to Ronald McDonald House in St. John’s.
As for food, nobody is going to go hungry throughout the day. Dozens of concession stands are located on each side of the lake, and the variation will surely make your mouth water. Local legends such as Ziggy Peelgood’s, Winky’s Wedgies and BeaverTails are available right at your fingertips, and a multitude of hot dog, fries, and traditional Newfoundland cuisine trucks will make sure you never eat at the same place twice.
For most vendors, the Regatta is an annual event, but for Elena Diyanora, this will be her family’s first.
Newfound Perogi is a new concession stand at the Royal St. John’s Regatta, and it has a bit of a different background. Diyanora and her family moved to Newfoundland in 2015, and she says they’ve always enjoyed cooking homemade perogies.
“They’re really good,” she said, smiling in her Canada hat, “and they are all homemade.”
Newfound Perogi also caters to vegetarian and vegan preferences.
Diyanora said she just wants to serve people good, healthy food, and she is excited to start what will hopefully be a new tradition for her and her family at the Regatta.