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February 26, 2006

The BWA, AW, and many more volunteers put their efforts in to create an incredible event this weekend in Lexington. The venue was a historic house and theater, with free Kentucky Ale in the back yard, a chili cook-off (lots of food!), lots of great kayaking films on the big screen, and a beautiful 55 degree day on the Elkhorn River with Canoe Kentucky (a Jackson Kayak Super Store).

American Whitewater was there in force with a booth, while Jackson Kayak was there with Clay Wright, and the Jackson family. Chris Emerick came up with us also and introduced the Polly Green/Chris Emerick film titled “Nomads”, which was a world premier (first time ever seen by anyone other than those editing it or in it.)

I got to paddle with a bunch of good folks from Indiana, Ohio, Missouri, Michigan, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina, and more. Did you know that there is a club called the “Toledo River Gang”? Me neither, but there is and the club president was on hand to have a good time, learn what he could, bend my ear, and go back to Toledo, Ohio.

Jackson Kayak gave a brand new Slime Green 4 Fun to American Whitewater to give away to one lucky new AW member. Anyone who joined AW that weekend was automatically entered into a raffle and the lucky guy gets the boat. Where was my camera? Well, I didn’t take it out once all weekend. I was too busy talking to many new and old friends.

The run down the Elkhorn was super fun. My favorite part was coming around the corner in the area called the “Bluffs”, which is just that, huge vertical cliffs jutting straight up from the river right bank in late afternoon light.

Allison, Ed, and Nathan, and the rest of the Canoe Kentucky gang brought in lunch, provided free shuttles, and put together a great day on the water for many first timers down the Elkhorn. I recommend to anyone in that region to get their Jackson Kayak from them. They have been doing this for 25 years and care as much for the sport as they did when I first started working with them 10 years ago.

The winner of the Film Festival pro category was Influx, by David Arneau. David got 5th place in the 2001 World Freestyle Championships paddling for France.

I think I will enter a film in next years NPFF, perhaps the 2006 Jackson Kayak promo video. That will be out in 30-45 days.

Well, I was up past midnight the last two nights, making me a tired puppy.

We have a bunch of boats to build and I have 4 days left to edit with Chris Emerick! We have been working as late as midnight on the videos after working with Jackson Kayak during the day too. I get a feeling that the season has started! Bring it on!

🙂 EJ