By JOHANNAH O’KEEFE
The weekend of Oct 11, UMW’s newly-formed Canoe and Kayak Club team will participate in the Collegiate National Canoe Race sponsored by the American Canoe Association (ACA).
The race will take place on the Rappahannock River for the first time. UMW, ACA and the Virginia Outdoor Center are hosting the event.
Arik Knapp and Cameron John, both juniors, and long-time paddlers, lead the Canoe and Kayak team. They are focused on honing the team’s paddling skills for the big event, John said.
“We have begun to brainstorm on how to expand and grow the club and its activities for the spring and next fall,” Chris Stec, of the ACA, said.
The race will begin at Mott’s Public Landing in Old Mill Park in downtown Fredericksburg at 9:30 a.m. The events include an open, and open single male and female canoe and kayak race on Saturday, as well as a mixed canoe relay on Sunday.
The ACA, under the guidance of ACA Board President Kirk Havens and Bill Micks of the Virginia Outdoor Center, was responsible for bringing the Collegiate Championships to Fredericksburg, Stec said.
The Canoe and Kayak team at Mary Washington is sponsored by the Virginia Outdoor Center, located in Central Park. The Virginia Outdoor Center provides the team with all boats and equipment free of charge.
There is no fee for schools wishing to register for the race, but every college must become an ACA Paddle America College Club in order to participate.
The ACA membership fee is $250, John said.
According to Stec, schools from Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Virginia are expected to participate.