The Ohio River Paddlefest

The 15th annual Ohio River Paddlefest will take place on Saturday, August 6 in Cincinnati, OH. Recognized as the largest paddling event in the country, Paddlefest draws over 2,000 people from 20+ states who paddle 8.9 miles on the Ohio to celebrate the river’s beauty and value while raising funds to get urban teens outdoors.

Paddlefest is presented this year by St. Elizabeth Healthcare and benefits Outdoor Adventure Clubs of Greater Cincinnati (OACGC) which works in 19 inner city high schools in Ohio and Northern Kentucky to get teens out intonature to paddle, fish, hike, bike, climb and camp year round.

Paddlefest kicks off on Friday, August 5 with a “Paddler’s Party for a Cause” from 4:00 – 9:00 pm at the Schmidt Recreation Complex (2944 Humbert Ave.) in Cincinnati’s East End Garden District. Paddlers are invited to completetheir registration, drop off their canoes and kayaks and enjoy live music, food trucks, craft beer from Blank Slate, a silent auction, raffle and gear swap. Overnight camping for $15 per vehicle will also be available. Parking and admission are free thanks to Subaru Dealers of Greater Cincinnati.

On Saturday, August 6, the U.S. Coast Guard will close the Ohio River to commercial and powerboat traffic from 7:00 am to 12:30 pm as participants paddle 1,400+ canoes and kayaks 8.9-miles from the start at the Schmidt Recreation Complex to the finish line at Gilday Riverside Park four miles downstream from Paul Brown Stadium. Paddlers will launch from 7:00 – 8:30 am.

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