Ice Chips & Canoe Quips

It’s full speed ahead for this team that is paddling hard to reach its final destination, Killarney Mountain Lodge. The race route stretched some 34 kilometres in the waters of Georgian Bay and the North Shore, where paddlers faced strong winds and tested their mettle in the rising swells. photo by Current to Killarney

Current to Killarney!

The canoe race that had such potential to become a go-to destination race suffered a minor COVID blip in 2020, but organizers have shaken that off and have put out the word that they will host a 2021 addition to what is sure to be another great success. 

For the uninitiated, the Current to Killarney race starts at the Spider Bay Marina in Little Current, then under the swing bridge and travels just 34 kilometres to Killarney. Along the way boats and their passengers must navigate to checkpoints at Strawberry Island Lighthouse, then cross the big waters to reach Heywood Island. From there it is a direct push towards Lansdowne Channel that leads to the quaint village of Killarney.

There are a myriad of divisions and boats that can be used to allow you join in the fun. From solo kayaks, tandem canoes all the way up to the massive 36-footer Montreal canoes! Luckily, if you have no experience in the sport these large canoes allow you join in with more experienced navigators and paddlers. 

Finishing is the goal and what a reward they have planned for you in Killarney. The finishing times are greatly weather dependent, but some teams will be around 10 kilometres per hour and some slower. Fast or slow a great celebration party awaits you and your slightly tired muscles. There are a number of accommodation options from luxury to rustic. The next day there is even a shuttle for you and your boat back to Little Current. For more information, please check out their great website at: info@currenttokillarney.com

Kicking the crap out of COVID

Sheehan Dan Fletcher and the Manitoulin School of Martial Arts has been doing their best at keeping COVID in check while continuing to train. They have been working on forms and even bringing in guest instructors. Recent congratulations go out to Dylan Kuntsi, Sara Turner and Anika Smith who were promoted to orange belts while Maureen Pearce earned her promoted to yellow belt. On top of that Jeff Graham also received his second degree black belt or nidan! Keep up the great team!

Skating oval started in Central Manitoulin 

The Municipality of Central Manitoulin started work on an outdoor skating oval path at the ‘A’ ball field at the municipal complex in Mindemoya. This great endeavor is a joint venture between municipal staff and public volunteers. Monday morning the roads department cleared out the area and are still working on how to get it started because the snow is all crystal. They plan to get a base down with volunteers and maintenance early this week and then have the fire department flood it. Hopefully they can get a good base while we still have cold temperatures! Community Development/Outreach Co-ordinator Marcus Mohr (also an active Lion and general community activity promoter) says that the start date is to be determined and is based on the weather.

Marcus also said that people will likely be asking for the reasoning behind having an oval vs a rink and it is that organized sports are not currently permitted, nor likely for the foreseeable future during COVID restrictions. A skating path also allows for directional skating so users can social distance properly.

If you would like to see a successful outdoor skating venue and are able to volunteer please email Marcus at centralecdev@amtelecom.net or call 705-377-5726. Further announcements to come as they work out the logistics.

Body Stories Dance updates 

Director of Body Stories Dance Candice Irwin has a couple of updates that may affect her current and future students. Her session dates have shifted. As long as the lockdown is lifted on February 10, she will be starting her winter session on February 16. The session will run until March 30 (seven weeks). She has also added an adult contemporary class to the schedule, available from 8-8:50 pm on Tuesday nights. As with all classes, no dance experience is needed to sign-up. Her contact details are: odystoriesdance@gmail.com and 647-213-1497.

Rainbow Ridge winter activities

Rainbow Ridge in Manitowaning now has three outdoor spaces for all to enjoy, with no golf clubs needed! They are now offering snowshoe trails, crokicurl and a pond ice rink (outdoor rink). If you are interested, you must book a time on Facebook. Look for the ‘Book Now’ button on their page. You will also see the reminder to please abide by all protocols and read waiver before accepting your booking. For instance, no more than five skaters on the ice rink, on the trail, and no more than four at the crokicurl site. Helmets are mandatory on the ice rink and of course maintain social distancing of more than two meters in all activities. They are not giving you a mulligan on this!

A good sport is good for sports. 

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