Welcome to National Paddling Week!

June 8 - 16th, 2019


Canada's celebration of recreational paddlesports, craft, heritage, and water safety from sea to sea to sea! 

e want to encourage as many Canadians to get into a canoe, kayak or onto a board and be counted during this extended week to show our national commitment to the fun, the benefits, and challenge of paddling!

New in 2019: Welcoming our racing friends Canoe Kayak Canada, and Sail Canada getoutonthewater.ca to the national celebration of boating!


National Paddling Week is What You Make it!

During National Paddle Week clubs, groups, organizations and/or individuals community members are welcome to host events of all shapes and sizes - or simply register a private/family paddle on the free shared calendar. No fees, specific affiliation or membership to any group is required to participate from Paddle Canada or its website.

How do you join the celebration?

Take a paddle and tell us about it on the calendar. Facebook your paddle fun - everyone in the shot on the water must be wearing a PFD or jacket to post.

Double the fun! Invite co-workers, family, or a non-paddling friend to you at an event!

Challenge your community watersport, charity, or business competitors to a friendly contest!

*Individual events may choose to charge a fee or pass on a non-tax deductible donation to help fund Paddling Week website and support. Contact Dawn Callan at events@paddlecanada.com to chat.

Free to use event and educational resources on this website or by emailing events@paddlecanada.com

National Paddling Week Facebook Page


Open for year-round paddle chat!

* 2 posts per month maximum over the calendar year

Recreational paddlers of all abilities and ages will enjoy increased access, awareness and exposure to paddle sports & their benefits through this paddle community communication "hub".

Community clubs, groups, organizations, would be volunteers and event hosts may post events at no charge. We want everyone to benefit from increased free promotion through the National Paddling Week page, website, and participation! 

Paddle instructors and skill development groups are welcome to benefit from the increased public interest, client or participant development, general publicity, and program awareness.

Both community and National Paddling Week partners are welcome to broaden their membership base, donations, and corporate sponsorship by enhanced outreach and promotion through our platform.

National Paddling Week Development

National Paddling Week as we know it today is the brainchild of Rapid Media’s Scott Mac Gregor, an annual commitment by Paddle Canada, who shares its roots in previously existing national canoe day project by the Canadian Museum. What happens today is a community-based chain of events which the result of many paddlers and paddling organizations shining a spotlight on our national water heritage and paddlesports. Hats off to our friends on the water National Fishing Week - you showed us the way!

The mission is to promote recreational paddling through individuals, groups, families, events instructors, industry, clubs, communities and other recreational paddlers.

Paddle Canada acts as the administrating partner, coordinating information, volunteers, and connecting ideas and like-minded people who then make it happen in their communities!

Rapid Media contributes to the promotional and media host for the annual campaign. National Paddling Week benefits greatly from the creativity and resources Rapid Media donates so generously!

What help does the umbrella organization/partnership offer?

Free to events: Web / social media based outreached and advertising Support documents about event organization and safety. Online access will be provided to advertising templates, media plan, and press templates. Instructors and industry members are equally encouraged to list workshops, lessons, events, and/or demonstrations.

Money matters - who is paying for what?

Events and their related expenses are the responsibility of the hosts and as such, the budget will reflect the monetary commitment of those hosts.

Is anyone making a profit?

Events may choose to charge fees or admissions as they see fit. Many events will run at cost, by donation or be held for free.

*Life Jacket Challenges may be run as a marathon by individuals and events with non-tax receipt-able donations to local search and rescue partners or charities and are the responsibility of the individuals running them.

*Paddle Canada Instructors/members may charge the standard fees minus the transfer (administration funds) which are normally sent to Paddle Canada who absorb this loss as an in-kind donation to the event.

Past Partners include the Canadian Canoe Foundation and the Canadian Canoe Museum. 

Year-Round Paddling Resource Hub: 

What began as a week created to boost awareness of our national recreational paddling sports, safety measures, skill development, and heritage five years ago has expanded to include a year-round paddler support hub through this website!



Live from National Paddling Week

Be sure to post your pictures, videos, and updates from your NPW event!

** All photos and videos must feature proper use of safety gear (lifejackets being worn, helmets where appropriate, throw bags and bailers) to qualify for posting.

Use #NPW hashtag on Twitter

 Check out our blog for more updates

Upcoming Events

Big Canoe Days
May 24 | Rideau Canal, Lock 31 Smiths Falls Detached
Familiarization tours for invited groups to demonstrate planned summer outings in the Swale; Open house for those interested in forming a voyageur canoe club in the area; Practice time available for teams participating in Paddlefest on June 1 FamTour May 24 9:30-11:30 am; 1-3 pm May 25 1- 3 pm Open House May 24 5-7 pm May 25 9:30-11:30 am; 5-7 pm Practice May 24 5-7 May 25 9:30 11:30 am;5-7 pm
Paddle Toronto Islands Festival and Race
June 01 | Centre Island
Participate by joining a team to paddle and race a Historical Voyageur Canoe through the Toronto Islands. There will be a short training by one of the instructors. Or just come to cheer for your team and learn about the Voyageurs History. There will be for large 20-person voyageur canoes with all the PFDs and paddles provided. The race and paddle will take place at the Long Pond of the Centre Island and the Bird Sanctuary. No previous experience is required. All the paddle participants will have to sign a waiver.
Rideau Paddlefest
June 01 | Lower Reach Park
A full day of fun on the Rideau with voyageur canoe racing, educational exhibits, children's activities and entertainment. Registration and fee is required for voyageur canoe races. The event itself is free to public
Tim Hortons Ottawa Dragon Boat Festival
June 20 | mooneys ba
The Tim Hortons Ottawa Dragon Boat Festival is a not for profit event founded in 1993. The organization held it's inaugural festival in 1994 with the assistance of the Hong Kong Canada Business Association. The first event lasted half a day with 25 teams participating. The Festival, which now boasts over 200 teams in competitive, corporate and community categories, is one of the hottest sporting and arts events in the Nation's Capital. Recognized as North America's largest dragon boating festival the four day celebration offers free admission to world class programming, marquee concerts, amusement attractions, sports demonstrations, a variety of artisans, exhibitors, delicious culinary treats, beach-side bar, children's area and non-stop racing. The Tim Hortons Ottawa Dragon Boat Festival is made possible by the continued support of Canadian Heritage's Building Communities Through Arts and Heritage, Celebrate Ontario and the City of Ottawa Partnership Program.

Many thanks to our National Paddling Week Sponsors and Partners:










National Paddling Week Produced by:



Heritage Partner