Paddlefest ready to roll 

After months of preparation, everything is set for Paddlefest 2002, the first annual celebration of self-propelled water sports in the Sea to Sky Corridor. There will be canoe programs based at the Edgewater Outdoor Centre on Green Lake and kayak clinics and lessons at Wayside Park on Alta Lake.

In addition there will be demonstrations, tours, competitions, as well as a product exhibition. On the political side, there will be discussions of issues affecting whitewater access in the corridor and the Whitewater Kayak Association of B.C.’s annual general meeting.

The highlight of the weekend will be a First Nations component, beginning at noon on Saturday with Native War Canoe Tours and demonstrations. The Laoyam Eagles of Pemberton, silver medalists at the World Dragonboat Championships in Philadelphia last year, will be on hand to give a demonstration of their sport. Organizers are using the event to raise money to help with the Eagles’ competition costs by encouraging Paddlefest participants to paddle with and against the team.

Later that afternoon there will be a native salmon barbecue and celebration with local First Nations providing entertainment following the dinner on Green Lake. Tickets are available for the dinner and show for $30, or $10 for adults and $5 for kids who just want to see the show.

Space is limited, but you can buy tickets in advance by calling 604-938-1783 or visiting the Whistler Activity Centre in the Conference Centre.

More information on Paddlefest 2002 activities are available at www.mywhistler.com, and the schedule is listed on the Tourism Whistler Web site at www.tourismwhistler.com. For more information, or to register for kayak clinics and tours, contact Captain Holiday’s at 604-905-2925.

Friday, June 7

9 a.m. – Hospitality tent opens, guests and exhibitors arrive and register. Also the first chance to get wet with free kayak tours on class 2/3 and 3/4 runs.

Noon to 2 p.m. – River of Golden Dreams tour, $50 per person.

1 p.m. – Free kayak tour, class 3/4 and 4/5 runs.

3 p.m. – Free introduction to water safety and canoe paddling.

5 p.m. – Native war canoe demonstration and clinic, $35 per person or half price for kids.

6 p.m. – Dinner and refreshments at Edgewater Outdoor Centre. Barbecue beef, chicken and veggie burgers, salad and desert, $15 per person.

Saturday, June 8

9 a.m. – Site expo opens for all suppliers, sponsors and participants. Free Whistler Kayak Club trips, class 2/3 and 3/4 runs.

10 a.m. – River of Golden Dreams tours, Green Lake tours by canoe or kayak; $50 for river tours, $29 for lake. Trips leave every hour on the hour.

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