WILMINGTON – The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) will host the Paddle Palooza Festival at Cowan Lake State Park 1-5 p.m. Sunday, June 18.
This free event is a great opportunity for people to try a variety of different canoes and kayaks and learn stand-up paddleboarding (SUP). Experts will also be on hand to share information about local paddling activities and resources.
A number of partners from Clinton and neighboring counties will be available to help with the free paddling demonstrations, including ODNR divisions of Parks & Watercraft and Wildlife, L.L. Bean, Loveland Canoe, Whitewater Warehouse, Cabela’s, Roads Rivers and Trails, Strictly Sail, Morgan’s Outfitters, Aloha SUP, Ohio Paddlers, PaddleFest, Ohio Clean Marinas and the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary
The venue will be the Cowan Lake State Park Campground Beach at 1750 Osborn Road.
Canoeing and kayaking remain among the fastest growing of all outdoors recreation activities. Ohio ranked among the top 10 states nationally in 2016 with a record 495,975 registered recreational watercraft. Among this total are the number of Ohio-registered canoes and kayaks, which has more than doubled from 70,279 in 2007 to 181,203 in 2016 – an increase of 157.83 percent.
Those numbers are expected to grow as the state continues to invest in the paddling community.
From 2006 to 2015, more than $7 million was provided through community grant programs and publications. This support provided carry-in and small boat access, as well as hands-on skill development through local education and recreation programs, including Paddle Palooza festivals and the Paddle Ohio program. It also funded publications detailing stream access and paddling opportunities.