EDITOR’S NOTE: A reminder that this excellent event is on tomorrow at the Fairgrounds.

Paddle for AGH is a family celebration, which combines celebrating Canada’s 150th birthday, paddling the Mississippi River in Almonte, and raising funds for the Almonte General Hospital.

A Christmas Eve kayaker by the Fairgrounds in 2015 — that was one weird winter.


  • 11 a.m. Fairgrounds Open
  • Raft assembly begins. Spectators welcome
  • 11 a.m. Start Community Paddles (5 Km and 1 Km)
  • 1:30 p.m. Start Canoe, Kayak and Paddleboard Races. Participants in the Community Paddle are welcome to participate in these races.

Raft Race

The object of this event is to assemble a raft on the Almonte Fairgrounds site and, with a crew of four persons, paddle the raft across the Mississippi River, turn around a buoy and return.

The day’s events and activities will bring our community together to celebrate, have fun and raise funds in support of new Diagnostic Imaging equipment at the Almonte General Hospital. Crews are asked to set a high goal for their fund-raising efforts.

Raft Decoration and Crew Costumes

Prizes will be awarded to the crew with the most creatively designed, and most extravagantly decorated vessel. As well there will be prizes for the crews with the most elaborate theme-based costuming.

Raft Design Specifications

• Must be able to support the weight of the 4 crew members.

• May take any shape and be constructed of any material, but a commercial vessel may not be part of the design.

• Must float throughout the duration of the race. Commercial paddles are acceptable.

• Must be powered by human muscles.

• May use non-motorized devices that give mechanical advantage.

• The entire crew must be on the raft if they are unable to touch the bottom of the river.


1. There is a $100 limit on new building materials.

2. A cordless screwdriver/drill is the only power tool that will be allowed on site. Parts may be precut off site, but no pre-assembly is allowed.

3. Everyone on the build site must be wearing safety goggles. Spectators are not allowed on the build site but may watch from a distance.

4. All crews must wear a lifejacket or PFD rated for the size of participant.

5. There must be at least 4 crewmembers per raft.

6. The crew must be on the raft at all times after they are unable to touch the bottom of the river.

7. A team will be disqualified for intentionally attempting to scuttle another vessel or dislodge a crewmember.

8. The winner is the first crew to pick up the red cup on the beach while in contact with their raft. The three fastest rafts will receive prizes.

9. All teams are responsible for transporting their materials to the fairgrounds and thoroughly cleaning up after themselves following the event.