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Paddles Up!

MCRA Youth Paddling Page

The MCRA is increasing its efforts to promote the sport of canoe racing among young paddlers by sponsoring a series of youth races. The MCRA is also recruiting adults to recruit and mentor young paddlers.

If you would like to find out more about the program or are interested in being a recruiter or mentor please contact us -

Youth Races 2009

Help Wanted: Recruiting Agents and Mentors - Dave Diget

Youth Paddler Profile - Nathalie Hanson

Youth Races 2009

May 30 th Midland Race Steve Bis
June 20st Huron River Canoe Challenge Tim Feldkamp
July 4th Traverse City Garth Greenan
July 17th Spike's Race (Barton Cup) John Lucey
Aug. 2nd Wolf Lake Youth Sprint Championship Dave Diget
Aug. 11-16 USCA National Championship Matt Streib
Aug. 22rd Mio's "First Dam" Canoe Race Peggy Smutek

Youth Paddlers PLEASE talk with us - We want to offer races at every race that has an adequate youth course. We have planned races in June, July and August. We know you are involved with school activities in May and September.

Check the MCRA Race Schedule page for more race details

Help Wanted: Recruiting Agents and Mentors

This year we are hoping to increase the number of kids races with a point system similar to the adult event races. These races will be promoted by the race organization. This, I feel, is a good start in helping the growth of youth paddlers. More important is actually getting the kids introduced and interested in the life-long canoe and kayaking lifestyle.

This is where us adults come in. Seek out an actively find a neighbor child, grandchildren, church member or any school age children to get involved in paddling. Make it fun and the kids will see your enthusiasm, pick up on it and get hooked. Have or know someone in Boy Scouts, Girls Scouts, Big Brother/Big Sister? They are great sources. Talk to school teachers and get permission to speak to their classrooms and hand out materials for their parents to review. There are many opportunities and it just takes a little looking to see them. Who knows, you might find an exceptional paddling partner!!

Submitted by,
Dave Diget
Kalamazoo Canoe and Kayak Club
Kalamazoo, MI

Youth Paddler - Nathalie Hanson - 05/08/08

Nathalie My name is Nathalie Hanson. I am a member of the Kalamazoo Canoe and Kayak Club which is coached by Dave Diget. I have known Coach Diget since my freshman year of High School. I met him through swimming on the High School swim team. He is the assistant girl’s coach. He told me I should really come out for paddling, so I tried it. I instantly loved it. I love the team atmosphere and the relationship I have with Coach Diget. I have tried many new things thanks to his daredevil personality. - Nathalie Hanson



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