DYBERRY TOWNSHIP — Dozens of canoers and kayakers spent the day gliding down the Lackawaxen River at the Wayne County Canoe Classic.
Competitors were racing for the best time in their class, while raising money for community events in the Honesdale area.
Surrounded by the sounds of nature, 54 canoers and kayakers paddled down the river. The course starts at the Wayne County fairgrounds and winds nine miles downstream, through Honesdale. Amy Watson from Lakewood cheered her father and sister on from a pedestrian bridge.
“Telling them come on, do it a little faster. You’ve gotta catch up. They were first, they fell back a little bit, but hopefully they’ll catch up a little bit,” said Watson.
The recreational race is the first time some people have hit the water after a long winter. Others have been training for months, like Nick Hindley from Pennsdale.
“It was a bit shallow here and there, but I would say if you read the river a bit nicely, you’d get a good time coming down,” said Hindley.
The finish line is in White Mills. The Honesdale area Jaycees have hosted the canoe classic for more than two decades, raising money for community events, like the Easter Egg Hunt and Halloween parade.
“It’s time to get healthy again! Winter is over. People go out and get some exercise in early spring. We’ve also done a river cleanup in the past year, so this is part of helping with the area,” said Dave Sporer of the Honesdale Area Jaycees.
For outdoor lovers, it’s all about keeping nature pristine.
“There’s been enough sins in this area, the mining and everything else. It just ruined the watersheds. To be able to clean them up and bring them back, to go out and enjoy them, it’s fabulous,” said Brian ammon of Hillsgrove.