In the 90’s, Kent Ford (ACA Instructor Trainer Educator & Alzar School Advisory Committee member) started the Camp Cup Challenge as a way to bring together the many camps of Western North Carolina. Sometime around 2001, the event fizzled, then Chris Stec of Falling Creek Camp and Lee Leibfarth of NOC hosted it for several years. The Alzar School was keen to bring it back to life and did so in 2008, arranging a day of slalom and downriver races for almost 90 young paddlers. Then, in 2009, the Camp Cup became a two-day event, with guest coaches training campers in the gates and in Nantahala Falls of the Nantahala River on the first day. That year, 112 kids participated. The growth continued in 2010 and 2011, with more than 140 young paddlers converging at the Nantahala for two more great events.
The Alzar School has a mission to build young leaders, and they do that through the challenge of the outdoors. Students join the Alzar School for one semester of either 10th or 11th grades, spending time on rivers around the world, including Idaho (where the school is based) and Chile. Founders Sean and Kristin Bierle have a strong connection to the summer camps of Western North Carolina and revived the Camp Cup Challenge in 2008.
2016 Camp Cup Challenge:
The ACA and the Alzar School are looking for volunteers to help with this event if you are interested please fill out an ACA Event Volunteer From online and come see paddlesports bright future in action!
Alzar School is also looking for generous sponsors for the event... These camps and companies make it possible for them to provide lunch for all the participants and volunteers, to provide a t-shirt for every paddler, and to have a great free raffle at the end of the day. Previous sponsors include: