Ed Levin
Director of Publicity
Jefferson Dad Vail Regatta

The 81st annual Jefferson Dad Vail Regatta, presented by Independence Blue Cross, Coca-Cola and PECO is almost here as over 100 schools and 3,000 rowers from across the United States and Canada converge on the historic Schuylkill River in Philadelphia on Friday, May 10 and Saturday, May 11.

Temple University returns to defend the Varsity Heavyweight Eight Men’s title while Boston University will look to defend the Varsity Heavyweight Eight Women’s title. Another local team in Drexel looks to claim the Overall Points and Women’s Points Trophies while the University of Delaware will be back to defend the Men’s Points Trophy.

Here are the details:

Dates: Friday, May 10 and Saturday, May 11

Admission: Free

Times: The Friday races run from 7:00 am to. 6:00 pm. Saturday’s races will run from 7:00 am to 5 pm.

The Course: The 2,000 meters long race course start line is just north of the Kelly Drive-Hunting Park Avenue intersection. The course ends at the Grand Stand finish line just above the Columbia Avenue Bridge.

Award Ceremonies: All award ceremonies will take place on Saturday at the finish line dock as each championship race concludes. The winning team will take the podium while the second and third place crews will receive medals in their shell at the finish line dock.

Race Schedule & Results: Race results can be found on or by downloading the Dad Vail Regatta app which can be found in the App store for IOS and Android devices.

Where to watch:  Best place to watch is at the finish line grandstand but you can also view the races along the banks of the Schuylkill River throughout the 2,000-meter course. If cannot make the event all the races will be streamed at

Transportation: Free Shuttle bus service is available to and from the race course on Kelly Drive from 6:00AM until 7:00PM on both Friday and Saturday. This service is free of charge and will pick up from, and return spectators to, the event parking lots as well as the Philadelphia Art Museum. The Art Museum, a short walk from downtown Philadelphia, is also accessed by SEPTA Routes 32 and 38, and is near historic Boathouse Row.

If you drive, plan on parking your vehicle in the event lots provided in historic Fairmount Park. To access parking, follow the directions to Kelly Drive elsewhere on this site. Once on Kelly Drive, there will be signs posted to the remote parking areas. Shuttle buses will pick you up in the parking areas. You will be minutes from the race course and Rower’s Village.

If you walk from Center City or take public transportation (Septa Routes 32 and 38), shuttle buses will pick you up at 25th Street and Kelly Drive (gold equestrian statue of St. Joan of Arc). Walking from Center City, go to the right (north) of the Art Museum. Don’t forget to stop at the Rocky Statue or run up the Art Museum steps like Rocky. Proceed another block along Kelly Drive to 25th Street (gold equestrian statue of St. Joan of Arc). Once on the bus, after passing historic Boathouse Row, you can get off at Rower’s Village and then walk approximately ½ mile to the finish line or stay on the bus, proceed through the parking areas and get off at the Canoe Club (mid race), the 500 meter mark (final quarter) or the finish line.

The Jefferson Dad Vail Shuttle Buses will be marked “Jefferson Dad Vail Regatta” and will be either double decker London style buses or trolley style buses.

Road Closures: From 10:00 am on Thursday, May 9 until 7:00 pm on Saturday, May 11, Kelly Drive will close from Strawberry Mansion Bridge to Fountain Green.

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