UW-Parkside co-hosts 2nd Racine Community Paddle
By Kelsey Hoff
The second annual Root River Community Paddle takes place in Racine Saturday, May 19, from 2:30 to 7 p.m. This fun family event features a river paddle from Island Park to the Racine Yacht Club, with a spaghetti dinner and live music at the Yacht Club to follow.
"We are delighted to be a partner in hosting this event," said Mark Gesner, the university's director of community development. "It's a great opportunity for our faculty, staff and students to explore the Root River, connect with the Racine community, and enjoy UW-Parkside's Root River Environmental Education Community Center (REC) as it opens for the season."
Canoe and kayak owners drop their watercraft off at the Island Park kayak/canoe launch at 2 p.m., and shuttles are available to transport registrants from the North Beach parking lot to the Island Park Pavillion for check-in. The registration deadline is Saturday, May 12, 2012. After a brief canoeing/kayaking orientation, the paddle begins at 3:30 p.m., and continues until 6 p. m., when paddlers must be back at the Racine Yacht Club boat launch. Volunteers will help push off, disembark, and load trailers. The spaghetti dinner and music starts at 5 p.m. for boaters who arrive early.
Registration is just $5; the spaghetti dinner is $9. A limited number of canoes and kayaks are available for free rental and all REC canoes and kayaks will be in use for this event.
The Root River Environmental Education Community Center was created through a partnership between the City of Racine Department of Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Services and the University of Wisconsin-Parkside with support from the Wisconsin Coastal Management Grant program and UW-Extension, among others. The center's mission is to increase appreciation of the Root River, Lake Michigan and their environs through recreation and education.The REC is open this summer from May 19 to Labor Day. Weekly hours for canoe, kayak, and bike rentals are Thursdays and Fridays from 4-7 p.m., Saturdays 8 a.m.-4 p.m., and Sundays 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Discounts are offered to all students with identification. Environmental programs will also be offered.