Gauley Fest might be over, but that doesn’t mean the event season is drying up on the East Coast.
As well as the National Whitewater Symposium at the Zoar Outdoor Center and the Deerfield River in Charlemont, Mass., this weekend also marks the 4th Annual Whitewater Festival, held at the U.S. National Whitewater Center in Charlotte, North Carolina. This event offers something for everyone, with the USNWC showing that diversity with music, food, head to head and slalom races, demos and a freestyle event.
“This is the biggest event so far this year at the USNWC,” says Jason Miller, who’s been co-planning the event for World Kayak with his wife Samantha. “If you get bored this weekend in Charlotte and you are a paddlesports fan, then it is your own fault.”
The event starts on Friday at 5 pm with the USA Canoe/Kayak 2009 Canoe Slalom Championship Quarterfinals, followed by rollicking tunes till 9 pm.
On Saturday the events start at 8 am with a gear swap for boats, bikes, rafts and more at the Raft Barn. That’s followed by a freestyle event, hosted by World Kayak in their Hometown Throwdown series. This is the final throwdown for the year in Charlotte, a special bonus throwdown with some great support from a variety of sponsors, as well as regional sponsor WakaWai.
There’ll also be a Dagger Head to Head race in the careening competition channel, where a Dagger Green boat is up for grabs. Attendees can also demo whitewater kayaks from Bliss-Stick Designs and Dagger.
Live music will be going on all weekend, from bands with names like Round Black Ghosts, Ramshack and The New Relics. For all the little ones, there will be a Kids Zone also providing entertainment.
The U.S. National Whitewater Center is an outdoor recreation facility set on the banks of the Catawba River. Our 307 acres of woodlands is home to the world’s largest recirculating river, 14 miles of biking, hiking and running trails, and one of the world’s largest outdoor climbing facilities.