A increasingly popular event in Vernon is going national.
The Kalamalka Classic Standup Paddleboard Festival, marking its fourth year Aug. 31 and Sept. 1, is recognized as the first ever Canadian Championship for its Kalamalka Crossing on the Sunday.
“When we developed the format for the Classic, it was to reach out to our community and provide a recreational competition with the emphasis on fun for everyone,” said Kevin O’Brien, race director.
“It’s a chance to connect with paddlers from around the country for a fun day at the beach without all the travel – and that’s pretty unique.”
Saturday’s events are spectator friendly with short courses and relays for kids and adults of all skill levels. Sunday’s Kalamalka Crossing is a 10-mile trek across the length of the lake (starting in Oyama), where everyone can compete to earn a Canadian ranking (or just do it for the fun).
Widely recognized as the largest festival of it’s kind in Canada, the Kal Classic is staged on the colourful waters of Kalamalka Lake and is expected to draw more than 150 paddlers from across North America.
Saturday’s events include the Eagle Dash, a short Recreational competition (all ages, any board) – open to anyone who has a board and wants to do a ‘social race’. For the spectators, the competitive paddlers will showcase their skills on a buoy-riddled short course called WikiHolo (fast ride in Hawaiian) where they have to do a short beach run to complete each lap. The kids get into the action with their own race dubbed KeikiHolo – a short course in and around the Kal dock with the emphasis on fun.
The afternoon events are sponsored by Naish who will supply a fleet of inflatable race boards for everyone to use for a pair of fun events.
One of the most popular events will be the mixed team relay – reams of four or teams of two (adult and kid) will form right on the beach and compete head-to-head with each other for prizes and good times. There is also a corporate team relay division so get your co-workers together and go for it.
Proceeds from the event go to support SPrKL, Society for the Protection of Kalamalka Lake. Their efforts help preserve the health of Vernon’s drinking water and create awareness for the local environment. Live updates will be available throughout the weekend on OKSUP.com, Paddlesurf.ca followed by post-event coverage.
For full details and to register visit www.kalamalkaclassic.com.