Aroostook River Spring Runoff Canoe and Kayak race expands in numbers

Published: May. 16, 2023 at 11:43 AM EDT
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CARIBOU, Maine (WAGM) - The Aroostook River Spring Runoff Canoe and Kayak Race brought many kids and families together this past Saturday. News Source 8′s Isaac Potter was there and has details.

Many were off to the races in the Aroostook River Spring Runoff Canoe and Kayak Race. The event is a recent new event in the town of Caribou that is all about bringing the community together for some fun.

Gary Marquis, Superintendent of the Caribou Parks & Recreation Department, says “This is the third year of the race, we had many years that we didn’t have one, and we talked about it one day and said let’s try it and here we are. We have changed the date, last year we were the weekend after which is the same weekend as our city wide yard sale. So it was kind of conflicting with ourselves, so we tried it this weekend. It seemed like the numbers have increased, the length is 6.2 miles, it’s a nice nice nice float.”

The 6.2 mile course starts out at the Lower Lyndon Street Boat Launch and ends at the Forbes Pit in Caribou. Marquis says the numbers doubled from last year, and it’s good to see the event grow.

Gary Marquis: “It’s nice to see it increase, you always want to go north with your numbers and not go south with your numbers, so the advertisement and the word of mouth is getting out. The Facebook posts that Neil Sleeper puts out, he is the coordinator of this race and it’s starting to get out. People are getting out and hearing it, and it’s excellent.”

Marquis says what makes the event special is being able to get families out and enjoy the outdoors.

Gary Marquis: “It’s always about for us at the rec department, it’s always about getting families and young kids out and about and enjoying what nature has to offer. It’s proven today with the people here that we got a mix of young and old, and it’s excellent.”

While the event was a lot of fun, the event looks to grow the numbers for next year.

Gary Marquis: “The more numbers the better. It’s not about getting money out of this, it’s all about getting kids and parents and everybody outside and enjoying what we have. That’s the big thing, so if we could get to 40 boats next year, that would be excellent.”

Isaac Potter News Source 8.