WE DID IT!!!! We had over 200 kayakers on the water!

 

  

What a wonderful way to start our 6th Annual Kayaking for Meso event. Among the 225 paddlers there were 7 Meso survivors. It was very exciting seeing some old friends and making new ones. Eleven states were represented by all who attended. Six of the survivors were carried thru the course via pontoon boat and 1 survivor paddled the entire course, which was my daughter Linda.  If you remember, she was able to join us on the water on the pontoon boat last year and now this year she was able to kayak with us. I’m so grateful.

The morning was very active getting everyone checked in and handing out t-shirts, but it went very smoothly after a couple last minute difficulties leading up to this morning. We needed extra shuttle bus runs this year because of the number of participates 

 

It was a little overcast when we started out for the short paddle to Lock 4. We started a little late due to the amount of paddlers this year.

We all fit in lock 4 with some room to spare. Once the lock doors closed, down we went.  After the water reached its correct level, the doors opened and we were greeted by NYS Police Marine Dive Unit, who escorted us the rest of the way to the terminus. Arvin Hart Fire Dept. had already locked thru and watched over us between lock 4 and 3.

We proceeded on to lock 3, not knowing at this time we had one kayaker that did not make it into lock 4 in time, but she made a gallant run and caught up with us before we entered lock 3.

Going thru lock 3 was uneventful and we made our short stop at Mechanicville Boat Dock for our photo op. Between lock 3 and 2 we were also supported by the Hemstreet Park Fire Dept. and the Mechanicville Fire Dept.

The weather remained just right. It was still a little overcast which made for a more pleasant day for all of us on the water, The Halfmoon Waterford Fire Dept. and the Auxiliary Coast Guard greeted us as we came out of lock 2.

Arriving at the park is always exciting, seeing all the well-wishers waiting for us as we arrive. The Waterford-Halfmoon Fire Dept. did it again, helping kayakers out of the water and preparing a wonderful lunch for our friends, family, and of course our kayakers. They again, as they have done in previous years, donated their proceeds to Kayaking 4 Meso. They have been great supporters for our event.

Our goal, as always, is to raise awareness of mesothelioma in addition to raising funds for research. I’m very proud to announce we raised over $23,000.00 that goes directly to the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation.

 

We’ll need your help again next year as we plan to do it again in 2017. Let’s see if we can make it to 300 kayakers next year. If you wish to get involved in a great cause contact me via email at: markwells@kayaking4meso.org.

 

See you on the water!  

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