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Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Calling All Paddlers!

By Craig Olson - Fergus Falls, MN

The Fourth Annual Otter Tail River Paddle Fest is scheduled for Saturday, June 30 from 10:00am to 2:00pm, starting at Veteran’s Park in Fergus Falls. Paddlers are also welcome to experience a Free Kayaking opportunity on the Pelican River on Friday, June 29 from 3:00pm to 6:00pm at E.L. Peterson Park (Mill Pond) in Pelican Rapids. 

All paddlers are welcome and all equipment and instruction will be provided for a half hour paddle if you would like to try Kayaking or Canoeing. A Paddlefest Race will be held at 1:00pm Saturday with three sets of flags to see how far you can go. You can bring your own equipment or have equipment supplied to you at the event, first come, first served, as available equipment is limited. Children must have parent participate with them. For more information or to volunteer to help contact [email protected]

Sunday, July 1 will provide further opportunities to explore one of the most scenic rivers in Minnesota as the I Can Paddle Kayaking and Canoeing events are scheduled for that day. Canoeing begins at 9:30am and Kayaking at 11:00am. 

The Canoeing trip is perfect for families that want to paddle together in the same boat and take their canoeing to the next level. Paddle along miles of the most scenic rivers in Minnesota and learn how to read the river and river safety. Once on the water, you will practice a variety of paddling techniques and maneuvers. You’ll also learn how to plan a river trip for your entire family. Children must be at least 8 years old and participants under 18 years of age must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. The program will last until approximately 2:30pm and the cost is $35 per canoe with up to three people per canoe. Advance registration is required. For more information or to signup go to http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/state_parks/ican/paddle.html

The Kayaking trip will allow participants to take their kayaking to the next level. Children must be at least 12 years old and participants under age 18 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. The event will run until approximately 4:00pm. The cost is $30 per adult, $20 per child with one person per kayak. 

Because of the length and remote nature of the I Can Paddle programs, participants will be provided with a pre-trip packet including a packing list, program description, directions to water access and more. These packed will be e-mailed out following your registration. Participants will meet at a program’s designated water access. From there, you will be shuttled to the put-in where you will begin the program and then paddle back to your cars at the water access. Click on the above link to register for to obtain more information.

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