Enthusiasts of kayaks, John Boats and tubing will have the chance to race in the Cumberland River this summer and raise some money to help the children of Whitley County.
Whitley County Projects Director Amber Owens announced during May 15 monthly Whitley County UNITE Coalition meeting that the Whitley County Tourism Commission would be holding the ‘Kayaking for Kids’ race on Aug. 19.
“We are going to have what I hope are pretty good prizes,” Owens noted.
Proceeds from the event will go to provide 25 Upward basketball scholarships for children in Corbin and 25 Upward basketball scholarships for children in Williamsburg.
Owens said that the scholarships are for children, whose parents can’t afford the participation fee.
The remainder of the proceeds from the race will be divided between family resource centers in Williamsburg, Whitley County and Corbin.
“They have told me the thing they need the most are shoes, socks and underwear. I guess those are things people don’t really think to donate,” Owens said. “The tourism board was looking for something to help out the kids in the area. These are two things that tend to be overlooked.”
Owens said that the kayaks, John Boats and tubes will enter the river at the Ballard Ford East river access and will go 2.5 miles downstream where the race will end at the Red Bird boat ramp.
Owens said that people with their own tubes, kayaks or John Boats will be asked to drop them off at Ballard Ford and then drive their vehicles to Red Bird on the morning of the race. Shuttles will be there to take them back to Ballard Ford.
Sheltowee Trace will be renting kayaks that day, but not John Boats or tubes.
The pre-registration entry fee for the race is $20. Those that pre-register will receive a free t-shirt or tank top.
The entry free on the day of the race will be $30.
Registration will begin on the race day at 8 a.m., and the race will start at 10 a.m.
The start times for the kayaks, John Boats and tubes will be staggered by 15-minute increments.
Woodbine Fire and Rescue will have three boats stationed at different points along the route in the event of an emergency or if a participant needs help.
Reclaiming Futures juvenile drug court program will be selling breakfast at the event as a fundraiser.
Cornerstone Community Church will be providing a free lunch.
Corporate sponsors are being sought for the event.
Silver level sponsorships are $100 and include the company name on t-shirts and two race spots with racers providing their own kayak, boat or tube.
Gold level sponsorships are $250, and include four race spots, and the company’s name on t-shirts and banners.
Platinum level sponsorships include six race sports, and the company name on t-shirts, banners and literature.
Life jackets must be worn the entire race.
For more information about the event, contact Owens at (606) 549-6000.
Owens, who is also the chairperson of the Whitley County UNITE Coalition, noted during the May 15 meeting that the recent Hooked on
Fishing overnight trip at Laurel Lake Baptist Camp went well.
The Whitley County UNITE Coalition also recently donated $1,000 to Whitley County High School’s post prom lock-in.