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Contact: Brian Feeney, 718-354-4602 (o); 646-879-0582 (c)
Area Residents Will Experience Kayaking for the First Time
WHAT: Kick-off event for the Kayaking on Jamaica Bay Program, part of Gateway’s participation in a nationwide Active Trails program.
WHO: Brooklyn and Queens residents who have been in training for the event since last winter, Ivan Levin, National Park Foundation, Washington, DC, Pete McCarthy, Superintendent of Gateway’s Jamaica Bay Unit.
WHEN: Sunday, June 14.
11 a.m. The kayak group will leave Canarsie Pier for the tour of Jamaica Bay.
1 p.m. The kayak group will return to Canarsie Pier.
A reception will follow with remarks by representatives of the National Park Service and the National Park Foundation. Both representatives as well as the kayak participants will be available for interviews.
WHERE: Canarsie Pier (Exit 13 off the Belt Parkway)
Background: The goal of the National Park Foundation’s Active Trails program is to connect the American public to their National Parks by making them aware of the variety of land and water trails that can be found at their local National Park units. This year Gateway National Recreation Area, in conjunction with the National Parks of New York Harbor Conservancy, is promoting the Active Trails effort by offering a special program to introduce area residents to the joys of kayaking on Jamaica Bay. The program is free due to a grant from the National Park Foundation through the generous support of the Coca-Cola Foundation, a Proud Partner of America’s National Parks.
The program began last winter with indoor instruction at the Brooklyn Sports Club Pool in Spring Creek Towers. The indoor pool session gave beginners the chance to learn about kayaking and gain confidence with paddling in a safe and supervised environment. Beginning on June 14, instructors from the Sebago Canoe Club will lead groups who participated in the winter classes on a kayak exploration of Jamaica Bay; National Park rangers will also accompany the group. The program is designed to give participants a fun experience on the bay, along with a shared sense of ownership and understanding of the waterways that surround New York City.