Dad Vail Regatta Brings Rowers From Around the Country & Road Closure to Fairmount Park

The Dad Vail Regatta takes place Friday & Saturday on Philadelphia's Schuylkill River

One of Philadelphia’s iconic sporting events, the Jefferson Dad Vail Regatta, takes over the Schuylkill River this weekend. With the return of the largest collegiate regatta in the United States comes a major road closure and detours through Fairmount Park that last until Saturday night.

Starting Thursday morning, Kelly Drive was detoured along a 1.5-mile stretch from Strawberry Mansion Drive to Fountain Green Drive.

The Kelly Drive closure allows crews to get boats and other equipment to the river's edge and continues until Saturday at 8 p.m. During that time only permitted vehicles can enter the regatta zone.

Cars were detoured off the river drive and onto Reservoir Drive, Philadelphia Police said. Detours were posted.

You should expect detours in Fairmount Park Thursday ahead of the Jefferson Dad Vail Regatta.

You can use the Schuylkill Expressway (Interstate 76) as an alternate route. Martin Luther King Drive, on the other side of the river, can be used Friday. (It is closed for recreational use during the day Saturday.)

The regatta is the largest collegiate rowing event in North America, drawing more than 3,500 athletes from more than 100 colleges and universities from across the United States and Canada, organizers said.

The Jefferson Dad Vail Regatta celebrates it’s 80th anniversary this weeked. Jim Hanna, president of the organizing committee, discussed what spectators can expect as well as some new events surounding North America’s largest collegiate regatta.

Going to the regatta? You can pay to access parking areas adjacent to Reservoir Drive. And, you can watch the action for free.

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