A little Outreach

April 18, 2014

April 18 was a special occasion: The Boathouse was being visited by the journalism class from Toledo High.

One of the reasons I love canoes is even novices can be up and paddling within a few minutes of introduction. The Lazy Weekend 2.0 canoes work great for this. I tried my best to remember names - the guy in the back is the teacher, Peter.

Six kids, two teachers, and me - made for a perfect day out in the canoes.

We went up the slough to get our 'sea legs.' Three paddlers makes for interesting canoeing.

I'd never seen the tide this low - we usually have to go around this sweeper. This time we had to go under. This gave me an excellent opportunity to explain the dangers of sweepers.

The teacher told me to "try to show the kids as much as possible - include environmental and history." That's like music to my ears. The tide gates at the end of the slough were installed in 1920 and reclaimed about 500 acres of farmable land. I picked up that tidbit of info from the book: The Murray Loop. I've been encouraging people to 'touch the gates' as a symbol of accomplishment.

The gates were actually open, which is pretty neat. I've only seen that a couple times.

The teacher had asked for history, so as we paddled back down the slough and past the derrick, I told them about the Toledo Incident of 1925. I encourage you to click the link for two reasons: a) This was the first time in America that leaders of a mob were prosecuted for civil rights violations and b) History ain't pretty.

Next, we paddled to the mouth of the slough where it meets the Yaquina River. The mill has a huge pipe that runs over the river, held up by these big supports. We paddled down to the river, took a quick peek, and back to the Boathouse.

After I waved good-bye to the high school class, these girls who'd been sunning themselves on the dock asked if they could go for a paddle. The one on the left's name started with a T, the blond girl's name started with an S, and the only one I really remember is Ashley, who is hiding behind the pylon. They had a great time paddling around - I hope I helped make some memories.