The small town of Yealering is preparing for the biggest date on its annual calendar, with thousands of people and dozens of boats of all shapes and sizes expected to show up for this year’s Lake Yealering Regatta. The biannual event leads to more than 2500 people descending on the town — located between Wickepin and Corrigin — for the event which since the 1980s has featured homemade boats racing on the lake. Those entering have to sail, paddle, push or somehow propel their boats to a buoy in the middle of the lake and back, with tractor tyres, 44 gallon drums, cans, cardboard, plywood, pipes and other recycled bits and pieces used to create and dress up the boats before their journey. Prizes are up for grabs in a range of categories, including primary school, high school, open, and novelty prizes are on offer for best boat, best boat name and best costume. Local farmer and Lake Yealering Regatta chair Alan Manton said the event made a comeback in 2019 and had gone from strength to strength in the years that followed. “With the help of the Living Lakes Project and a few lucky rainfall events this year, the lake is full, and the Yealering community is ready to show off our patch of paradise,” he said. “It’s a brilliant community event that brings people together. . . and people get really creative with their boats,” he said. A dedicated group of nearly 30 locals spent Saturday, September 23 preparing the town and Lake — putting in more than 300 volunteer hours and filing two semi-trailer loads and many ute loads of foliage to make both look spick and span. The event aims to provide entertainment for the local community and bring in visitors to not only Yealering, but the entire region. As well as boat races, the event features numerous food and market stalls starting from 10am, live musicians throughout the day, children’s entertainment including the Little Louie, cheese platter grazing boxes and gourmet burgers for dinner available to purchase, before finishing off the day with fireworks, an evening band and bar till late. Ski Show WA will be back to wow the crowd with their gravity defying routines, a machinery display of modern and vintage equipment, and the WA Sheep Expo Working Dog Auction group will also put on a display of young working dogs on the town oval. The event is co-ordinated by the Yealering Progress Association with support from dozens of sponsors. The aim is to create a low-cost family fun day, while show casing to visitors what the area has to offer. Shire of Wickepin president Julie Russell said this year’s event was expected to be a beauty after welcome rainfall. “It’s a great event for the Shire, because it brings a whole range of external people to see what we have,” she said. It is an amazing effort by the Yealering community, who make it happen. They do a great job at organise it.” This year’s Lake Yealering Regatta will be held on October 7. To find out more, visit the group’s Facebook and Instagram pages.