Sunday, December 13, 2009

Paddle club rendezvous

Even though the paddling season is ending in this area, evidenced by the appearance of portable ice houses on Pokegema Lake yesterday, people are already mentally transporting to spring and ice out. I got an email last week from SteveM, noted Illinois paddler and fellow fine beer afficianado, letting me know about a rendezvous of midwest paddling clubs that will take place on the Saturday of Canoecopia. The plan for the evening is below.

First Annual Paddling Club Rendezvous

Mark your calendars for March 13th 2010 at Canoecopia. Rutabaga and The Illinois Paddling Council will be hosting the first annual Paddling Club Rendezvous on Saturday evening from 5:30-7:00pm in the Superior Room at the Clarion Hotel next to the Alliant Energy Center campus. Piizza and soft drinks will be served. All club members and non members are welcome! The Rendezvous is an opportunity for paddling club members from all over the Midwest to get together to network, share favorite paddling destinations, plan joint activities, recruit new members, and just get to know each other over pizza and soda.

This sounds like a fine way to interact with members of other clubs in the midwest and learn about some paddle destinations other than the usual ones that everyone knows about. It does however, run directly opposite the annual Lake is the Boss Canoecopia Debriefing, held every year at the Crystal Corner Bar on Willy St in Madison. Last year high ranking members of the Missouri River Paddlers, Central Iowa Paddlers, SKOAC, Mad City Paddlers, and the Inland Sea Kayakers had a long and productive meeting at the west end of the big horseshoe bar at the CCB. This confab at the Clarion Hotel has the potential to replace the Lake is the Boss event but for one glaring omission: beer.

I'm sure an overwhelming majority of paddlers, at least the ones I know, would agree that 'pizza and beer' is much more resonant and rolls off the tongue much smoother than 'pizza and soda'. As luck would have it, I even know a few brewery folk that would probably be happy to donate a bit of beer to a fine event such as this with hopes that new paddling destinations and their beer might be introduced to what should prove to be a fine group of potential customers. I might even be able to make this happen with a minimal amount of effort, which is the amount of effort I usually like to expend. I'm sure there is a dizzying and malodorous pile of legal crap that can be trotted out to pooh pooh this plan, but most organizations hand out two drink tickets when folks walk in the door to placate the plaintiffs bar and that's all you get. Of course an immdediate black market in drink tickets springs up, but that's what our capitalist system is all about.

I like the idea of a paddling club meet and greet. This should even lure my two Madison paddling cronies, the FrugalFisherman and the Commish. One is too cheap to even attend Canoecopia and the other sticks me with parking every time we go. I do feel that crowd size, ambiance, and social interaction can all be enhanced by the presence of a little barley pop. Just let me know. I can git er done.

PS I also heard that, like This is the Sea 3, Justine Curgenven will debut This is Canoeing at this years event. I'm looking forward to that almost as much as the beer!


Silbs said...

That last picture: The more I look at it, the more I think it belongs in the Police Gazette. Where do you find characters like that :)

DaveO said...

i can't argue that it's a motley crew at best.......