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Memorial paddle and Paddle Fest return to Lake George this weekend

Crowds gather on Shepard Park Beach for the 2012 Love the Lake Paddle Fest.
Crowds gather on Shepard Park Beach for the 2012 Love the Lake Paddle Fest.
G. Burdett/The Lake George Examiner

Kayakers will traverse the entire 32 miles of Lake George this weekend for the 5th Annual Love the Lake Memorial Paddle. Participants will launch from Mossy Point boat launch in Ticonderoga Friday afternoon and will paddle south, stopping at Silver Bay for the evening. The paddle resumes Saturday morning ending at Shepard Park in Lake George Village. Their expected time of arrival at the southern end of the lake is 2 p.m. when they will join up with the Paddle Fest at Shepard Park Beach.

The memorial paddle is in honor of Stephen Canaday and Peter Snyder. Started by Robert Weinman in 2010, the year Canday and Snyder were killed in separate boating incidents on Lake George. Canaday drowned on May 31 when his canoe capsized in the wake of a passing motorboat. Several days later, June 9, Snyder, who was kayaking with his wife, was killed when a passing motorboat caused his kayak to overturn. One goal of the memorial paddle is to increase awareness of the dangers smaller vessels face when navigating the lake’s waters. A memorial service for all those lost in the lake will be held at the Silver Bay Chapel Friday evening at 6:45.

The Paddle Fest will take place this Saturday at Shepard Park Beach between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. The event features live music performed by the Hallertau Band, paddling demonstrations, and vendors. A steam versus muscle race is one featured event scheduled for the Paddle Fest. Lake George Steamboat Company’s ship the Minne-Ha-Ha will race against stand-up paddlers.

Patty’s Water Sports, the Adirondack Brewery and the Lake George Steamboat Company will be among the businesses participating in the festival this year. The emphasis of the festival, besides having fun, will be boating safety and lake stewardship. The Love the Lake Paddle Fest is jointly sponsored by the American Canoe Association, the Lake George Waterkeeper and Boats by George.