Friday, April 17, 2009

Up a creek (but with a paddle)

Another canoe and kayak race is about to give Lake Metroparks' annual Grand River outing a run for its money.

The Eastlake-based Chagrin River Canoe and Kayak Club will host a Chagrin River paddle sports race May 2 from Lake Metroparks' new Pleasant Valley Park in Willoughby Hills downstream to the confluence of the river and Corporation Creek in Eastlake.

That's quite a haul, and comes one week after the Lake Metroparks' Grand River venture on April 25.

This will mark the first time in memory for an organized paddle sports race on the Chagrin River, which had for decades been blocked by the former Willoughby dam.

With that structure now gone, paddlers can travel unimpeded all the way to the lake.

The object of the race, officials say, is to draw attention to the Chagrin River, a state-designated scenic river.

For further information, call 440-942-4141.

On a different matter, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service reports that waterfowl hunters spend $900 million annually on goods and services with a total economic multiplier of $2.3 billion.

Waterfowl hunting supported 27,000 jobs and generated more than $8.5 billion in employment income, the Service's study found.

This study also determined that waterfowl hunters tend to be younger, have higher educational achievement, and are more affluent when compared to all hunters.

By far the majority of waterfowlers live either in the South or the Midwest the study also found.

- Jeffrey L. Frischkorn

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