Toledo Summer Youth Program
June 29, 2013
The city of Toledo provides supervised activities for it's youth.
There is nothing more fundamental to our role as a Community Boathouse
than participating in this program. As terrifying as it is to have
a dozen or so neophyte paddlers show up, it is our duty, soooo:
Step 1 is to get 'em moving with a little game of Peg, Patch, Hook.
Paper, Scissors, Peg beats Patch, Patch covers Hook, and Hook,
um, hooks Peg, I guess. Teams are split into crews and each crew
picks an attack. On the count of 3, the attack is displayed and
it then becomes a game of tag where the winning crew chases and
tags the others. When you are are captured and pressed into service,
and you now chase down and capture your former crew mates.
Now it is into the life jackets, receive the safety lesson "Don't
be stupid and if you do fall in, make lots of noise because it takes
me some time to get my camera out and I want to take pictures,"
then the recitation of the pledge "I will be safe!"
The guy in the cowboy hat is Taylor, a truck driver for the mill.
He was on a break, so I shanghaied him into helping out. I can't
remember the name of the girl in the bow, but the rest of Salt's
crew was Cole and Caleb, Scott on the oars, and Cinnamon.
while Bea was being paddled by Cheyenne and brothers Richard
Aurora was crewed by Haley, Ally, and Paige.
We loaded the others into Bea and Aurora Jeremy and
I hopped into Daisy. One of the kids opted not to go paddling,
so I handed her the camera.
On to the water we went. That's a Skunk
Cabbage leaf in the water - a pretty important plant to the
natives in the region.
We made the right choice with the colors on those canoes.
We spent this first day trying to figure out how canes and rowboats
worked. We did some basic maneuvers and learned how to safely transfer
from one boat to another while on the water.
Vindication of the Lazy Weekend canoe design: Excellent carrying
capacity and the center seat is wide enough for a couple youths
to sit side-by-side.
After the kids left, some guys on vacation came up to borrow the
canoes for the weekend. Like it says on the banner: "Established
in 2011 for the express purpose of getting people on the water"
so this, too, is part of our mission.
The guys who had graduated from University of Oregon chose Daisy.
While the Oregon Staters chose Bea. All as intended.
Bud came down to talk Boathouse business. Soon, we looked out and
saw this gentleman walking the docks, admiring our boats. With a
hat like that, I just had to talk to him. He's from Portland and
has a wooden tug from the early 1900s and just loves seeing wooden
With everyone gone and the Boathouse to myself, I had to figure
out something to do. Paige told me there was another dozen or so
younger kids - aged about 6 or so. She asked it would be OK for
them to come next week. Sure, but we don't really have paddles sized
to suit them. That's easy enough to fix, innut?
Next morning, I took off the clamps and took the bandsaw to the
blanks. I don't use a bandsaw enough, if you ask me.
Saturday was an idyllic day - this gentleman came up from Newport
and paddled his kayak in the slough. We spent a good 20 minutes
talking about how much Toledo's waterfront has improved and possibilities
for the future.
And later in the morning, this couple came up from Corvallis and
were impressed with the operation we had running.
It was a scorcher of a day, and try as I might, I couldn't convince
anyone to get in a boat and go for a row. That's fine - at least
they were out and looking.