5 Tips For Participants In the Kenduskeag Stream Canoe Race
The Kenduskeag Stream Canoe Race is coming up on Saturday and so we have a few tips for folks who are taking part, to make it an enjoyable day.
It will be the 51st running of the race down the Kenduskeag Stream, an event that's as much a part of the culture of Bangor as Paul Bunyan and the Thomas Hill Standpipe.
Folks will gather on the banks of the stream with folding chairs and coolers full of refreshments, ready to cheer on the successful, and encourage those who struggle.
Here are a few tips we thought of that might make participants more likely to be on the former end of that spectrum, instead of the latter!
For the actual rules and regulations, log onto the Kenduskeag Stream Canoe Race website.
It's important to dress smart for an event like this so, while boots and jeans may be great for camping and hiking, they're not the best choices for a canoe race. If you capsize, the heavy clothing will weigh you down. Instead, opt for a wet/dry suit or lighter layers like polypropylene fleece or paddling shells. Sneakers, crocs, or anything with a tread for good traction will work on your feet. The water is very cold, so just make sure you're going to be warm enough!
The only things worse than wiping out at the race, other than personal injury, would be losing your keys at the bottom of the stream. Or your cell phone. Or your wallet! If you can secure them to your person (like in a zipped pocket of a jacket you won't lose), great! But it might be best to have someone bring them to the end of the race for you. Otherwise, you may be calling a locksmith in order to get home. Oh, and also to get into your home!
Remember how our mothers taught us to do unto others how we would like others to do unto us? This is a really important rule in the race. See, if you make fun of someone whose canoe has capsized or cut someone off, causing them to dump, it could come back to bite you in the butt. Because, later in the race, when you end up in the water, they may be the ones floating by and taunting you. In the words of Bangor PD's Tim Cotton, 'Be kind to one another'
The Kenduskeag Stream Canoe Race is about fun, but it's also about skill and respect. So when the rescue personnel who spend all day standing in cold water to keep you safe, tell you to sit down and stop horsing around, LISTEN to them! Otherwise, they may be telling you that your canoe is on its way to the end of the race and you, who just dumped it, have a long, wet walk downtown.
No pets are allowed in the canoe with you during the race. So leave Fido and Fluffy at home, where it's warm and dry, and no one has to worry about them jumping into the water while their owners are busy paddling. Apparently, Gumby's are acceptable!