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MCCD event allows visitors to try out canoes, kayaks

Published: Tuesday, May 13, 2014 3:44 p.m. CDT • Updated: Wednesday, May 14, 2014 12:06 a.m. CDT

CARY – Canoes, kayaks and paddle boards will be on parade Saturday at Lake Atwood.

The McHenry County Conservation District is hosting a discovery event so that beginners and experienced paddlers alike can try out the different water crafts and learn about local outings and outfitters.

The Paddle in the Park event will take place 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, May 17, at The Hollows Conservation Area, 3804 Route 14 in Cary.

Entry is free, and for a one-time fee of $5, attendees can test a variety of water vessels and participate in workshops. Registration is not required.

Clinics for canoe paddling will be held at 10:30 a.m. and noon, and for kayak paddling at 11 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Other classes will cover stand-up paddle boards, solo canoe paddling, and canoe rescue techniques.

Southwest Brigade's historical interpreters will demonstrate a voyageur canoe, showcasing the importance of the canoe in early American settlement, exploration and the fur trade industry.

Local vendors will be on hand, and a number of canoeing resources will be available, covering where to paddle, where to get lessons, clubs to join, local outfitters and rentals, and details on local river trips and Midwest excursions.

Music will be provided by Potts & Pans, and food will be for sale by Duke's Alehouse and Kitchen.

Participants this year will include the Illinois Paddling Council; U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary; local canoe and kayak clubs, including Prairie State Canoeists and Southwest Brigade; local outfitters, such as Flatwater Canoe and Kayak Rental, and Rocktown Adventures; and retailers, including Erehwon Mountain Outfitter, Alpine Accessories, LL Bean and Capsurz.

For more information call Prairieview Education Center, (815) 479-5779 or visit www.MCCDistrict.org.

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