The Lowell Kinetic Sculpture Race is “a competitive parade of the arts and science. Otherwise known as the triathlon of the art world,” Bianca Mauro, one of the event’s producers, told me at the September 2017 competition.
“Kinetic Sculptures are all-terrain, human-powered vehicles with an art twist,” according to the contest website. Picture contraptions that are a mutant hybrid of bicycle, raft, art and comedy. Today they raced through the streets of Lowell, starting on Market Street near the intersection of Palmer Street, going down the ‘Bone-Shaker Alley’ of Middle Street to the “Maddening Mud Pit” near the Tsongas Center, then along VFW Highway to Heritage State Park, into the Merrimack River for 100 yards, and up a beach to return onto the streets. “Survivors race back to Market Street for the dramatic finish.”
The annual competition was first held in Lowell September 24th, 2016. There are numerous rules, one key one being “your feet can never touch the ground.” There are also numerous awards, including the Golden Dinosaur for the first “breakdown” or the “most memorable breakdown,” and a prize for the team finishing “Next to Last.”