10 takeaways from Canoecopia 2018!

10 takeaways from Canoecopia 2018!

There were so many great visits to the booth and conversations at Canoecopia this weekend that we literally can’t remember them all, especially on this blurrrry Monday after the show. But we want to say a big thank you to everyone who stopped by our booth. Here are some highlights that are making their way through my “show brain” today:

1)  Over 1,000 Canoecopia attendees took home safety and fire-prevention info from The Outdoor Kind booth and presentations. Next year, we’ll be giving away even more information!

2)  Speaking of safety and fire prevention, we were especially happy to hear from representatives of numerous paddling clubs that they were sharing our “Oh Sh!t” Emergency Kit handout with their fellow members. Thanks for spreading the word!  That’s music to our ears…

3)  And speaking of music, Jerry Vandiver added an Outdoor Kind canoeing moose sticker to his well-worn guitar case this weekend. We think the world of Jerry and are proud to have been included on there…and fairly close to the Eagle Monk Brewpub sticker, too!  🙂

4)  It was cool to meet so many fellow “parishiners” from the Church of the Double-Bladed Paddle Facebook group this weekend. Maybe we can plan some group shots in the lobby next year, though I realize how crazy and near impossible that will be! (Sounds like a challenge worth taking, though!)

5)  We had a nice visit with Kevin Callan at the booth early Saturday morning this weekend, then saw him several times later too. Not presenting, as we were in our booth talking to attendees, but as he was literally running past in the hallways to the next place he had to be. The only occasion on which he wasn’t running was when he reportedly was resting on the couch in the Nova Craft canoe booth. Then, maybe two minutes later, we heard him being paged to go sign books. We’re sure he ran to that, too!

6)  Thanks to each and every first responder who came up and talked to us at the show. We appreciate everything you do for us and hope you enjoy your Outdoor Kind vehicle/boat stickers!

7)  We had the best booth volunteers – Michael Stiemke-Reis and Gabby Austin (who are pictured above) on Friday/Saturday, and Ande Meyer on Sunday. Michael is a former student of mine, so it was great to catch up with him and have dinner with the two of them later. Thanks to all three of you for your help…and can we pencil you in for next year?!?  🙂

8)  I’ve made a lot of virtual paddling friends through social media this past year, and it was fun to have them visit the booth too. Preston Ciere, who posts some great material via portageur.ca, not only stopped by our booth to say hello, but he interviewed us about the Outdoor Kind’s initiatives. It was also very cool to finally meet (in real life) fellow Wisconsin paddler/dog lover Chelsea Mayer and her beau Brad! We hope your goal of paddling the entire Wisconsin River is reached soon!

9)  We were really pleased to know that the South Carolina presentation materials were helpful to several couples who will be traveling to the Charleston area in the near future. Thanks for stopping at our booth to let us know. And we were absolutely charmed by the young teen who came up to us for advice on how to convince her parents to take her to South Carolina this summer rather than their planned trip to Maine. (We hope our compromise of Maine in the summer and South Carolina in the winter works out for you!)  🙂

10)  Finally, thanks to all for the interest on the Yukon Journey charity expedition (and its follow-up documentary) that will occur this summer. While it’s not connected to the Outdoor Kind directly, it was great fun to hear your enthusiasm for the trip and its goals of helping first responders too. Special thanks go to those who donated to help Outdoor Kind volunteer and environmental biology student Cassidy Brennan join us on this 2,000-mile journey. I know Cassidy appreciates your kindness very much!  You can learn more about the “Yukon Journey” charity paddle and documentary at: http://yukonjourney.org – or you can donate to Cassidy’s trip on her gofundme page.

So with another Canoecopia in the books, we’d like to wrap up by saying thanks again to Nancy and Darren at Rutabaga/Canoecopia, and everyone who talked with us at the booth and donated to help our initiatives. You can see more photos from the weekend on our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/theoutdoorkind/   We look forward to seeing all of you next year!