The 8th Annual Great Canadian Kayak Challenge & Festival

The 8th Annual Great Canadian Kayak Challenge & Festival is now behind us and by all accounts, it was the biggest and best so far. The weather co-operated and the 3 day festival was hugely successful for everyone involved. A record number of people numbering in the thousands came out to enjoy a fun filled weekend of water based competitions, art, culture, children activities, performing arts and live entertainment. The spectacular evening concerts, the Saturday fireworks extravaganza and Sunday’s water ski / fly-board stunt show drew record crowds. The firework extravaganza was said to be every bit as good, if not better, than those from much larger communities. A special thank you to KIDD Operations & Levert Personnel for sponsoring the fireworks and to Garments & Signs and D&L Towing for sponsoring the Summer Water Sports stunt show.

On behalf of the Steering Committee, we want to extend a heartfelt thanks to our 111 generous event sponsors , Aboriginal partners, exhibitors, and food & beverage service providers. Without your participation there is no festival, let alone one that is recognized as being a Top 100 in the province.

To the DEDICATED ARMY OF VOLUNTEERS we say THANK YOU! You are the “unsung heroes” of the festival. Working in the trenches is not always glamorous but the tasks of parking control, waste removal, volunteer hydration, registrations and the hundreds of other small, but important jobs, must be done. The parking was under control, and the park was immaculate throughout the 3 days. Your unselfish contribution was duly noted by the thousands who attended the festival.
Finally, thank you, thank you, and thank you to Dan Chase Live Performances for going over and above the call of duty and for agreeing to manage both Stage 1 and Stage 2. Your enormous contribution did not go unnoticed and was most appreciated by all of the artists who performed. Working with you and your team was a real pleasure. Despite the time pressures and demands from the artists, everything seemed to be seamless!

We also want to thank the participants both on and off the water for your support. To the residents, and the thousands of tourists attending this festival, thank you for coming out and encouraging the paddlers, the vendors and the many artists. We hope to see you again next year!

A special thank you goes out to the City’s Maintenance Group and Supervisor Gerry Paquette. Your attention to detail was appreciated. The set-up and tear down was seamless.

To Roztek Environmental, thank you for the unbelievable service. Despite the crowds, you got her done! It was appreciated by everyone.

We also extend a “special “ thank you to the media: print, radio, broadcast and online for assisting us with the task of building our Great Canadian Kayak Challenge & Festival brand and helping us create “top of mind” awareness of this end of summer festival. Your support has gone a long way at ensuring the event’s success and we truly appreciate it. A special thanks to 92.1 Rock and KISS FM for being the dedicated partners that you are. The live remotes and MC duties are truly appreciated. And to Eastlink, thank you for providing extended coverage of the festival throughout the weekend. Your live to air broadcasts went a long way and reinforced the fact that ours is one of Ontario’s Top 100 Festival. As always, you went over and above and for that we say thank you!

To First Student Canada, Timmins Police, OPP, MNR Conservation Officers, Timmins Fire & Mountjoy Fire, Timmins EMS, thanks for keeping our public safe.

Finally to Marnie Lapierre and Lacey Rigg, thank you, so much for your immense contribution. You two are valued members of the Tourism Timmins Team and you always rise to the occasion!

The Steering Committee will be meeting Sept 15 to de-brief this year’s festival and to start planning the 9th Annual Great Canadian Kayak Challenge & Festival. It is our hope that we can continue enhancing the festival by incorporating new and exciting activities while maintaining our unofficial reputation of being North America’s ” best in class” paddling festival. We hope that all of our sponsors will return and that many other corporate entities will get on board with financial support allowing us the luxury of staging a bigger and better event in 2016.

Stay tuned for more, and once again, thanks you Timmins! Sincerely
Guy Lamarche Jack Watson
Co Chairs

On behalf of the Great Canadian Kayak Challenge & Festival Steering Committee