Competitors in the open men’s short course heat of the Kalamalka Classic Stand Up Paddleboard Festival power past a marker at Kal Beach.

Competitors in the open men’s short course heat of the Kalamalka Classic Stand Up Paddleboard Festival power past a marker at Kal Beach.

Paddle festival proves a hit

For the first time in its seven-year history, the Queen of Kal Lake is local.

For the first time in its seven-year history, the Queen of Kal Lake at the seventh annual Kalamalka Classic Standup Paddleboard (SUP) Festival is local.

Coldstream’s Lina Augaitis won the title (which includes the combined scores for the short course and lake crossing).  The lake crossing is 10-miles long and featured 178 competitors.

“I did not race last year, as I was pregnant, but this is a special race for me as it was my first SUP race and now that I live in Coldstream, and it’s the first time a local has had the title, it’s pretty cool,” said Augaitis, who helped run the race with Kevin O’Brien from the Kalavida Surf Shop and his staff.

“We had a tone of great local volunteers and sponsors,” said Augaitis. “We couldn’t have done it without them.”

King of Kalamalka Lake was Australia’s Michael Booth.

The festival kicked off Saturday at Kal Beach with the short course, featuring a Survival-style elimination for men, and points for women.

There was also a Rail Trail 3.5-kilometre race for all levels.

There were open short course races as well as the competitive races, junior racing and free kids races.

The youngest kids to cross the 10-mile lake were Nixon Swanson, seven, his brother Mason, nine, and another nine-year-old named Jo from North Vancouver.

Money from the festival supports the Society for the Protection of Kal Lake.