Clarksville, TN – The City of Clarksville Department of Parks and Recreation held the second annual rally on the Cumberland on Saturday. This canoe and kayak event is a five-mile course which starts at the Clarksville Conservation Club boat dock and ends at Freedom Point in Liberty Park.
“It’s a beautiful day! We’re very happy with the turnout this year,” said Melissa Adkins, the program superintendent for the Clarksville Department of Parks and Recreation. “We have 33 boats with a total of 39 participants who are taking part in the second annual Rally on the Cumberland.”
The Clarksville Department of Parks and Recreation takes boater safety during their events very seriously, “We have boats along the course from the Montgomery County EMS, Montgomery County Emergency Management Agency, Clarksville Police Department, Clarksville Fire Department, the United States Coast Guard, Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency scattered throughout the entire five-mile course,” said Adkins. “We also have three volunteers from the Friends of the Clarksville Blueways who are trailing the group to make sure that everyone finishes safely.”
Even if you do not own your own your own kayak or canoe, you could still take part in this event as the City of Clarksville contracts with Run-A-Muck Outfitters and Blue Way Ventures to provide rentable canoes for the event. “We had those boats dropped off last night to be ready for this morning,” stated Adkins.
Volunteers are always important for events like these, and this one is no exception as Adkins explained, “In addition to the three volunteers from the Friends of the Clarksville Blueway previously mentioned, one of the members of the Friends of the Clarksville Blueways was kind enough to spend the night down at the Clarksville Conservation Club keep an eye on the canoes for us. A local Boy Scout troop also provided volunteers who helped get all of the heats organized, and they are actually going to jump in canoes and take part once the three heats are off to take part.”
Clarksville Online author Blayne Clements and his wife Kim Chandler took part in the event.
My wife and I had a great time. Being new to kayaking, we have found the local area to have so many places to explore, including Sycamore Creek and Land Between the Lakes.
This was our first time on the Cumberland River; we had avoided it because it has so much boat traffic. So today’s race provided us a unique opportunity to enjoy Kayaking on the Cumberland with dozens of others. It was great seeing the river full of kayaks and canoes.”
I have to admit, we weren’t really trying to win the “race ” and just enjoyed the float.
He offered his appreciation to the Clarksville Department of Parks and Recreation and everyone who made this event possible, “It was a great event and we appreciate Parks and Recreation, local public safety offices, and the Friends of the Clarksville Blueways Group for all their hard work.”
For the men, Vincent Pekrul came in first with the blistering time of 54 minutes 47 seconds. Sarah Wholley was the first female finisher with the time of 1 hour 4 minutes 14 seconds.
The Friends of the Clarksville Blueways meets once a month at the Clarksville Department of Parks and Recreation office at Public Square on the last Monday of the month. Their mission is to promote the use and conservation of the Blueways in Clarksville.