Florida Paddlers' Rendezvous

Florida Paddlers' Rendezvous History

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Early 1980s to mid-1990s

In the early to mid-1980s, each year a different paddling club would host a weekend get-together of paddling clubs. That club led the weekend trips, then passed the baton to another club the following year.

In 1987 the Florida Canoe & Kayak Association began helping with the event and eventually ran it. It evolved into a festival, the Florida Rivers Celebration. At that time, October was Florida Rivers Month.  There were vendors, boat trials, clinics, presentations, and some paddling trips. The last festival was held in October 1995 at Mike Roess Gold Head Branch SP.

2002 to Present

In 2002, FSPC revived the old style get-together, at first called the Gathering of Florida Paddling Clubs, then the Paddling Clubs Gathering.

In 2006 a new name was voted on by the participants. It became the Florida Paddlers' Rendezvous.

The Rendezvous has usually been in October, around the time the summer heat breaks. Attendance has varied from 45 to over 180 paddlers and their families. The host club chooses the locations and trips, and makes the plan (as simple as they like). Typically there is no registration fee unless for event insurance. Along with paddling trips there is a pot luck dinner, campfires, possibly a presentation or two and, of course, mingling. On occasion, the host club will sell t-shirts and other items.

Locations and Host Clubs

2002 - FL Sport Paddling Club at Silver River State Park

2003 - Palm Beach Pack & Paddle at Wekiwa Springs State Park

2004 - Marion County Aquaholics at Salt Springs Recreation Area

2005 - none

2006 - Wilderness Trekkers at Chassahowitzka River Campground

2007 - West FL Canoe and Kayak Club at Adventures Unlimited in Milton

2008 - Tampa Bay Sea Kayakers Assoc at Hillsborough River State Park

2009 - Indian River Paddlers' Club at Skydive Sebastian in Sebastian

2010 - FL Sport Paddling Club at Silver River State Park

2011 - Space Coast Paddlers, at Manatee Hammock Park, Titusville, FL

2012 - Apalachee Canoe and Kayak Club at Arrowhead campground, Marianna, FL