(NOTE: The Ipswich River begins in Wilmington as a series of small streams and wetlands.)
TOPSFIELD, MA — The Ipswich River Watershed Association is pleased to announce the 3rd Annual Paddle-a-thon — the fundraiser that celebrates the River. Returning Saturday, June 16, to the Topsfield Fairgrounds Route 97 field, Paddle-athon 2018 promises to attract more paddlers of all sorts to raise funds and awareness of the beautiful, and threatened, Ipswich River.
Registration is open HERE. Sign up today — the first 100 paddlers to register will get a free t-shirt.
This year’s Paddle-a-thon includes a variety of activities for families, kids and other adventurers. Everyone is encouraged to participate in the river experience and to celebrate at the party from noon to 4pm. There will be food, music by the Orville Giddings Trio, refreshments from Ipswich Ale, and a variety of local businesses and organizations, including Newbury Kayak and Canoe; Coast to Coast Paddle; and Green Crab R&D.
“Paddle-a-thon is a wonderful opportunity for our community to celebrate the Ipswich River and help ensure it’s here for future generations,” said Wayne Castonguay, executive director of the Ipswich River Watershed Association. “We had tremendous support last year from paddlers and local businesses and we’re hopeful Paddle-A-Thon 2018 will help us continue to protect our Ipswich River.”
The Ipswich River is considered a gem of the North Shore. It provides drinking water to more than 300,000 people and thousands of businesses in 14 communities. However, the watershed is susceptible to dangerously low flows, which concentrate stormwater pollutants, and have made the Ipswich one of the most endangered rivers in the U.S.
Last year’s Paddle-a-thon raised over $35,000 for IRWA’s Clean Water program, which helps monitor and protect the health of this vital resource. Again this year, paddlers are asked to raise funds to support and expand this program, with a suggested minimum amount of $100 per boat. Party admission for non-paddlers is $25 per person.
Paddlers have three river events to choose from:
- Social Parade – 4-mile group paddle from the party and back
- Grand Wenham Canal Race – fun, 2-mile competition for all types of watercraft
- Paddle-to-the-Party – Put-in anywhere on the  mile long river and meet in Topsfield.
A limited number of canoes and kayaks are available for early registrants. To reserve a boat, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 978.812.4200 after registering.
About Ipswich River Watershed Association
The Ipswich River Watershed Association is the voice of the river, working to make sure there is enough clean water for people, fish, and wildlife, now and for future generations. Through education, outreach, monitoring, and advocacy, IRWA seeks to connect the people, communities, and ecosystems integral to a health watershed. IRWA is a member-supported community organization with a small professional staff that works with many volunteers to monitor the river’s health. Please visit http://www.ipswichriver.org for more information or to learn how to get involved.
(NOTE: The above press release is from the Ipswich River Watershed Association.)