Paddleboard for Pets fundraiser set for Sept. 27

Published 10:00 am Monday, September 22, 2014


Doing the dog paddle will have a somewhat different meaning on Sept. 27 when the annual Paddleboard for Pets is held on Watauga Lake, beginning at noon at Fish Springs Marina.
The event is a fundraiser for East Tennessee Spay and Neuter and helps support programs offered by the agency, including low-cost spay and neuters and a pet food pantry.
ETSN Executive Director Danika Nadzan said this will be the third year for Paddleboard for Pets; it has been sponsored annually by Tanya Weaver with Off the Grid Adventures.
“The first year we did pretty well as a fundraiser,” Nadzan said. “Last year it had been stormy and cloudy most of the day, so we didn’t have a great turnout, but those of us who were there had a great time. It’s just such an unusual way to have fun with your dog, or just to enjoy our beautiful Watauga Lake, and help the community at the same time.”
At Paddleboard for Pets, humans and their canine companions can race or leisurely paddle around on paddleboards, kayaks or canoes.
Beginning at noon, different races will be held for different age groups and for people with or without their dogs. Nadzan said adult races will go across the lake starting at Fish Springs Marina and the children’s races will be a shorter distance.
Those not racing are free to paddle as they wish.
The event is open to paddleboarders of all experience levels.
“It’s lots of fun for everyone,” Nadzan said. “I went for my first time last year and took my dog, Mysti, to see how she’d like it. We didn’t race, but we enjoyed just paddling around. Other adults and children who are more experienced will enjoy the races. We’ve had several dogs who just love being out there on the boards.”
For a minimum $10 donation, participants will receive a paddleboard and two life jackets — for either two people or a person and a pet. Nadzan said family rates are available and special practice rates for those who register early.
Preregistration isn’t required but is preferred so that Off the Grid Adventures can plan for the number of people who plan to attend.
For more information or to register, call Off the Grid at 768-2336.

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