Philadelphia Canoe Club to host open house on Sunday

Forget the shore this weekend and join in on the paddling fun along the Schuylkill River. Who needs a crowded beach anyway?

The Philadelphia Canoe Club (PCC) will be holding its annual free open house this Sunday, July 10, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

PCC’s open house offers free whitewater and flatwater kayak demonstrations, a used equipment sale, an 8.4-mile race, food and music along the river. The public can also take a brief two to five-minute test ride on the kayaks and canoes to familiarize themselves with the boats.

The paddling demonstrations will focus on learning the proper way to paddle on whitewater and flatwater kayaks. Although the Schuylkill River possesses no whitewater, the clubhouse does offer regular lessons teaching the public to dominate the more aggressive currents.

Stick around for the 8.4-mile race at noon. It will involve a two and a half loop course on flatwater. Participants should bring their own boat and have racing experience. Register for the race at 10:30 a.m. and be sure to pay the $15 entry fee.

The club boasts that paddling is one of the fastest growing sports in the country. The sport has reached great popularity in states such as Virginia and West Virginia, according to Rosemary Rau, PCC Commodore. Pennsylvania, Georgia and Tennessee are also popular, she said, adding that some of the most famous sites for paddling are out West.

The open house will also feature bluegrass music and rock n’ roll Disc Jockeyed by PCC’s own Joe Cunningham.

If you miss out on the open house, look out for PCC’s various whitewater and flatwater paddling trips running March through October. The club visits rivers all over the east coast, including Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Virginia, New York, Georgia and Canada.

Visit www.philacanoe.org for more information. Those interested in participating must have experience paddling for safety reasons. You don’t need to be a member to participate.

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