The Great Trent River Raft Race 2023!

Set your calendar for June 24, 2023, and watch the website for updates in the coming weeks!

Event Performers

The Shadow Players Stage Combat Group

ShadowPlayers - The Great Trent River Raft Race Performers

The Shadow Players Stage Combat Group recreates the Golden Age of Piracy through a show filled with rousing sword fights and comedy hi-jinks.

The Pirates of the Loose Cannon Company

The Pirates are planning to return this year for even more fun.

The Tryon Palace Fife & Drum Corps

The Tryon Palace Fife & Drum Corps is participating in the Opening Ceremony AND they will also hang around for a second performance!

Fife & Drum
Tryon Palace Logo

Bryan Mayer

Bryan Mayer will be performing at the Captain’s Party as well as Special Appearance at the Opening Ceremony at the Raft Race on Saturday.

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Watch Our Raft Race Videos

2022 Raft Race Winners

Anything That Floats
1st Place –Party Time – Captain Dean Martin
2nd Place – Crayon Express – Captain Kevin Dickson
3rd Place - Black Duck – Captain Mike Miller

Paddle Raft Race
1st Place - New Bern’s Bravest – Captain Allen Howard
2nd Place – The Bone Grafter – Captain Brian Yaeck
3rd Place – The MOEN River Monsters - Captain Emily Abner

Pedal Raft Race
1st Place – Moondog’s Revenge – Captain Ray Wiley
2nd Place - Queen Anne’s Revenge – Captain Mike Willoughby
3rd Place – Team Shop Class – Captain Ron Saulnier

Classic Raft Race
1st Place – Lickety Split – Captain Jimmy Watts
2nd Place – Ole Yeller – Captain Gary Sanders
3rd Place – Pulp Paddlers – Captain Natalie Laux

Edward Teach Youth Sailing Association Race
1st Place– Howard Maye & Chase Fidgeon
2nd Place – Graham Foster & Aidan Hansen
3rd Place – Emma Glenn & Marshal Hinkley

Just For Fun Awards

Broken Paddle Award- Queen Anne’s Revenge
Best Costume of the day Award – Crayon Express
Most Creative – The Black Duck
People’s Choice Award – Ole Yeller

Our Raft Race Judges


Our judges for 2023, Sheriff Chip Hughes (Craven County), Caroline Nelson (Pirate Judge),
and Chief Patrick Gallagher (New Bern Police Department)

A Day of Family Fun

Fun for all the family on and off the water!

Bring On Your Raft Designs!

Gather family and friends to build a prize-winning raft!

Win Your Event Category...

And create history on the Trent River!


Event Information

Coming to New Bern NC on  Saturday, June 24th, 2023

Help us launch this year's event and make it the biggest of the season! We are looking for sponsors at all levels.

We had great attendance in 2019 and we’re expecting this year to be bigger still – Join us on event day as a vendor.


The Great Trent River Raft Race is back AGAIN!

In the 70’s and early 80’s there was an event….an event that drew thousands to the shores of the Trent River to watch a spectacle like no other. Hundreds of participants built homemade rafts and raced in The Great Trent River Raft Race

A couple of decades later the race is back!

June 2018 saw the successful return of the race to New Bern NC – folks from all over the State grabbed their paddle boards, jumped on their kayaks, built paddle and pedal rafts and got together with friends for a fantastic day of fun on the water!

The great news is…..we’re back – AGAIN for 2023!

Join the Fun - Design It, Build It, Race It!

Captain Presenting Sponsors


Thank You To Kid Zone & Entertainment Sponsor

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Thank You To First Mate – 3rd Level

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Thank You To Second Mate – 4th Level

2020 International Paper Logo

Thank You To Our Media Sponsors!

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