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Paddles Up Niagara

Join us for the 16th Annual Paddles Up Niagara!

What: Paddles Up Niagara is a family friendly and safe way to experience the natural areas and unique habitats of the Niagara River.  Whether you are a novice or an experienced paddler, you will enjoy spending the morning with an enthusiastic paddling community. Guides and safety paddlers will be on hand to assist and answer your paddling questions.

NEW this year:

guided eco tour hike and learn to kayak lessons!

Where: Beaver Island State Park, Grand Island, New York 

Meet at Shelters 2A & 2B, launch from the far end of the beach.

When: Saturday July 30th 2022

7:00 AM - Eco-tour #1

7:30 AM - Eco-tour #2

8:00 AM - Eco-tour #3

The eco-tours begin at Beaver Island beach and are designed to be smaller in size, so everyone can hear the guide interpret plants and animal life as they guide the group through habitats around Beaver Island. Spaces are limited so please register early. Each eco-tour is limited to 15 participants each.

To view a map of the Eco-Tour route click the link here:

8:00 AM - 9:00 AM FREE Learn to Kayak session

New this year!  This session is offered by the NY State Parks Interpretive staff, who perform regular learn to Kayak sessions throughout the summer. For the Paddles UP Niagara event, they are offering lessons to a limited set of interested individuals just prior to the Fun Paddle. This session is offered to anyone age 8 and up and is limited to 10 participants.

8:00 AM - Eco-tour Hike

New this year! The Eco-tour Hike will be lead by members of the Niagara Frontier Botanical Society, it will begin at shelter 2B and walk to River Lea and the Allenton Farm. From there it will continue on down the East River Trail, to the Kayak launch and then return to shelter 2B. The expert guides will identify and discuss trees, shrubs and flowering plants along the way. It is an easy walk on level ground. This hike is limited to 16 participants.

To view a map of the Eco-tour Hike click the link here:

8:30 AM - 11:30 AM - Organizational Partner stations

Make sure to visit the many organizational partners that will be exhibiting very important water safety equipment & information, environmental resources and other interesting facts about our unique and precious natural resource that surrounds WNY, our Great Lakes and the Niagara River! Some of the participating organizational partners include; Marine Services Bureau of NY State Parks, Great Lakes Watershed Program, Citizen Coalition for Wildlife & Environment, Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper, WNY Land Conservancy, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Army Corps of Engineers, and more.


10:00 AM - Fun Paddle

The larger Fun Paddle leaves from Beaver Island beach and allows paddlers to choose how far they wish to paddle, the route goes around Little Beaver Island, back towards the launch site and then paddlers can choose to continue on to the East River Marsh or end their paddling adventures by disembarking at the launch site.

To view a map of the Fun Paddle route click the link here:

11:00 AM - 1:00 PM - Free admission to Grand Island Historical Museum at River Lea!

Paddles Up participants will have the opportunity to step back in time and see what it was like living on Grand Island during the 1800's, when Grover Cleveland's uncle, Lewis Allen, built the mansion, that is now called River Lea. If you have been inside River Lea in the past, you may want to make another visit because it has gone through some changes with new displays. To follow recent developments with the museum and historical society visit: http://www.isledegrande.com/historicalsociety/historicalsociety.php

Registration will be available around June 1st

FREE T-Shirt for the first 200 Registrants!


Where to rent kayaks:

For individuals who don't feel like bringing their own kayak or for those who are just starting out and need a kayak, please contact Blue Water Marina.  They are a trusted partner with quality boats and they bring the kayaks right to the Beaver Island Beach on the day of the event. 

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Address: 330 East River Rd. Grand Island, NY

Phone: 716-773-7884

website: https://www.bluewatermarinagi.com/

Important Must Do's:

Personal Flotation Device


All paddlers MUST wear a zipped up coast guard approved lifejacket, anyone who refuses to wear a lifejacket will not be permitted to paddle with the group. Lifejackets must be worn properly.

Sound Producing Device


Paddlers should bring a whistle on their watercraft. NY State Parks Marine Services will have some to pass out at the event. If you are in need of assistance on the water, blow your whistle and wave your arms or paddle in the air to alert the safety paddlers.

Follow the Course


Paddlers must follow the designated course and display their numbers on their boat or lifejacket.  Race type bibs with numbers will be supplied on the day of the event.

Organizing Partners:

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