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Sanctioned Event of the Year - Manhattan Kayak Circumnavigation

Wednesday, December 12, 2018   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Chris Stec
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Presented to the top ACA sanctioned event as nominated by the paddling public.


Since 2004, the Manhattan Kayak Circumnavigation started by Jerry Blackstone and Steve Blumling both members of the Yonkers Paddling and Rowing club is one of the most highly anticipated and definitely the most visible kayaking event in New York City metropolitan area every year.    On average, 150 paddlers participate, many coming from outside of New York state and from countries around the world.   The organizers work closely with NYPD Harbor Patrol and collaborate with US Coast Guard to provide safe passage for the flotilla.   The high visibility, including significant press coverage, of the Manhattan Kayak Circumnavigation has been a powerful driver of enhanced recognition of paddler’s access to and safe passage through New York City’s increasingly busy waterways. With waterfront residential development exploding along miles of previously industrial shoreline, the NYC waterfront is going to be an area of tremendous opportunity for the ACA.   But, the mythology about the insurmountable danger (pollution/currents/traffic) of the City’s waterways persists.  The Manhattan Kayak Circumnavigation is a vital event in showing that a large group of paddlers can safely do what many people continue to think is impossible. The founder of this event passed away this summer and the event has now been renamed ”The Jerry Blackstone Manhattan Kayak Circumnavigation”



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Founded in 1880, The American Canoe Association (ACA) is a national nonprofit organization serving the broader paddling public by providing education related to all aspects of paddling; stewardship support to help protect paddling environments; and sanctioning of programs and events to promote paddlesport competition, exploration and recreation.

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