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2014 Summit Highlights

Grand Rapids, Michigan hosted the ACA's inaugural Adaptive Paddling Summit on September 15 – 17, 2014.  Industry leaders came together in a collaborative environment to learn from each other, refine best practices, and celebrate the latest innovations in the field of adaptive paddling. 


Location: Grand Rapids, MI

Date: September 15 – 17, 2014

Venue: Prince Conference Center, Millennium Park & Venema Aquatic Center

Partners: (webpage)

Summit Program: (PDF)



  • Bill Barkeley
  • Janet Zeller
  • Kevin Carr
  • Ann Yoshida
  • Jeremy Oyen
  • Joe Moore
  • Cindy Dillenschneider
  • Tom Kersey
  • Bryan Wood
  • Truitt Layman
  • Kevin Pimentel
  • Diana Proemm
  • Nancy Uschold
  • Christy VanHaver
  • Joan Arnold
  • Angela Meyer

Highlights from 2014:

  • Exciting events for paddlers of all experience levels
  • High quality educational sessions, including a special presentation by Ann Yoshida, the first adaptive paddler on TeamUSA Canoe/Kayak from Hawaii
  • The latest in adaptive equipment demonstrations
  • 3 hours of "Try-it-Zone" time where participants got hands-on with the latest adaptive paddling equipment

Special Events:

  • Awards Ceremony & Banquet
  • Two Keynote Presentations - Bill Barkeley & Ann Yoshida 
  • Adaptive Paddling Workshop


  • Over 100 Members, Recreation Specialists, Paddlers & Instructors Represented 
  • Over 30 States Represented
  • Over 80 Different Adaptive Organizations Attended

 Additional Training in:

  • ACA Adaptive Paddling Endorsement
  • Continuing Education Units from the American Therapeutic Recreation Association (ATRA CEUs)

Post Summit Survey Testimonials:

"Truly an amazing event for people of all abilities."


"Not only did I connect with adaptive paddling enthusiasts, but I also made a far stronger connection with ACA."


"Best organized event I have attended in years.  Re-established value of ACA conferences for me."


"I really enjoyed the supportive atmosphere and sense of collaboration."


"The entire summit surpassed my expectations, I would not hesitate attending another Adaptive Paddling Summit."


"I have pages of notes. I have learned a lot of new information. I can't imagine not attending yearly" 


"It was an excellent summit.  The best conference I have ever been to." 


ACA Mission

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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