33rd Annual Great Bathtub Race — Labor Day, September 6 — Nome, Alaska


Bathtubs mounted on wheels race down Nome’s Front Street. Each team must have five members, one in the tub with bubbles in sight. Suspenders & hats are mandatory apparel. Each team crossing the finish line must have a bar of soap, towel, bath mat and at least 10 gallons of water in the tub. Winner receives possession of the “Miss Piggy & Kermit taking a bath” trophy until the next year’s competition.

“For Bathtub Races, there’s no place like Nome,” says NPR

NPR interviewed Nancy McGuire, editor and publish of the local newspaper, the Nome Nugget and member of the defending championship bathtub racing team, the Laughing Ladies. “We have to bath at least once a year, and we can prove it,” said Nancy. Click here to read the NPR article.


“A squeaky Clean Race,” says travel writer Lynn Seldon

“There’s no question that participants are the cleanest people in Nome. At least for one day. That’s what Lynn Sheldon says in his article. Click here to get to the article.

Sheldon’s article lists out the 11 rules for the race. We appreciate that. We dull men like to read rules.

How Jim McKay would say it . . . :

“The thrill of victory . . . and the agony of defeat . . . the human drama of athletic competition . . . this is the Great Bathtub Race [exclamation point removed].” That’s the way the blog from a bathtub company on the web, shop4classics, reports it, click here.

Nome Trivia: Why called Nome?

Unlike other towns in Alaska that are named for explorers, heroes or politicians, Nome was named as a result of a 50 year-old spelling error. In the 1850’s an officer on a British ship off the coast of Alaska saw on a draft of a map that a nearby prominent point was not identified. He wrote “? Name” next to the point. When the map was recopied, another draftsman thought that the “?” was a “C” and that the “a” in “Name” was an “o.” The British Admiralty christened it “Cape Nome.”