Get ready to see 'em rip down the chute at top speed!

The 32nd Annual U.S. National Toboggan Championships will be taking place in Camden from Friday, February 2nd through Sunday, February 4th.

Toboggan Championships, Mainevideomag via Youtube
Toboggan Championships, Mainevideomag via Youtube
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Each year, thousands of people descend upon this picturesque coastal town, as the Camden Snow Bowl plays host to this exciting winter race. An annual event since about 1990, the Toboggan Championships consist of 415 teams of racers making their way down the Jack Williams Toboggan Chute, in hopes of being the fastest across the finish line.

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Along with the 2, 3, and 4-person divisions, there's also an "Experimental" division, where toboggans that don't meet the strict standards or criteria of the competitive divisions, can still get their turn in the chute!

Credit: Adventures with Aislinn via YouTube
Credit: Adventures with Aislinn via YouTube
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Initially built in the 1930s, rebuilt in 1969, and then once again rehabbed in 1990, the chute is something you really should experience first-hand, either as a spectator or even better, a participant in the race.

People come from around the nation, and some from around the globe, to experience the races.

Toboggan Championships 2, Mainevideomag via Youtube
Toboggan Championships 2, Mainevideomag via Youtube
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Uniquely Maine, according to one website,  "The chute is 400 feet (120 m) long, 70 feet (21 m) in elevation, and speeds up to 40 miles per hour (64 km/h) are attained. The run-out is on to frozen Hosmers' pond. If there is clear ice on the pond, some sleds will go the entire way across, 0.25 miles (0.40 km)."

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This year's event will kick off at noon on Friday and run through till about 3 or so on Sunday, according to the Facebook Event Page.

"In addition to spirited competition that requires no special skills, there’s a costume parade and contest with a steel drum band serenade, food vendors, a beer tent, a perpetual bonfire, and good times outside in the woods of Tobogganville, next to the Camden Snow Bowl. The mountain is open for skiing and snowboarding, but the best time will be over at the toboggan chute, where 400 teams of racers will each reach speeds of more than 30 mph as they slide down the chute and exit onto frozen Hosmer Pond for a thrilling ride."

The events are free to the public if you want to watch them. But there is a fee to park.

For a preview of what to expect, check out these videos from past participants.

 

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