Richmond will host the 1st Annual Cape Breton Paddlefest from September 16th to September 18th. Richmond County Economic Developers are hoping to see a good number of paddlelists come into the area for this event. There are events planned for all week-end starting on Friday, with the sign in at the Bras d’Or Lakes Inn between 5 and 7pm followed by a Slide Show courtesy of Rising Tide Expeditions to get the week-end started. From 8pm to midnight the Bras d’Or Lakes Inn will host a Social with live entertainment by Krista MacKinnon and Jay Luddington.
On Saturday the events will begin at 8am at the St. Peter’s Lions Hall, with a welcoming address by a representative of the Municipality of Richmond followed by breakfast with a guest speaker from the Bras d’Or Lake Biosphere Association. The guest speaker will address the audience on the Bras d’Or Lake's designation as the newest UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in the world and Canada’s 14th; just another accolade that Cape Bretoners’ can be proud off. At 9:30am, visitors will be able to watch participants of the event take part in the Paddlefest Parade which will travel through the historic St. Peter’s Canal to the Marina where a number of events are scheduled to take place starting at 10am. From 9:30 am until 12:30pm there will be sessions for Canoe Beginner, Kayak Beginner, Canoe Intermediate, and Kayak Intermediate with all kinds of interesting aspects to be learned followed by a social paddle on St. Peter’s Bay. The Paddlefest Expo will also take place at the Marina from 10am until 4pm. There will be a lunch break from 12:30pm until 2pm followed by the afternoon sessions which will continue through the afternoon and conclude with a Social Paddle of Arichat Harbour. From 6 to 7pm the Paddlefest Dinner will take place, with guest speaker Bill Danielson, author of Cape Breton Weather, at the Lions Hall. Followed at 9pm by a dance where visitors can dance the night away with music by My Dog Sam.
On Sunday Paddlefest sessions will continue starting at 9am and running to noon with the official closing of the Paddlefest. Participants in this event must pre-register by 4pm on September 9th.