Junior Members’ Paddling Day

cong14(800)On the 9th September, we took 16 of the Club’s junior members to the Congresbury Yeo. The children’s ages ranged from 8 to 15 (but 53 if you count Steve and Martin)!!

We met at the Yeo around 11am and began by presenting the ‘Arthur Knott Junior Award’ to this year’s recipient, Eliah Molina-Hernija.

We warmed up with a game called ‘paddle swap’ before getting ourselves kitted out and onto the water.

After a nice gentle paddle to the weir, we played a variety of games – sharks and minnows, throw the soaking wet sponge at each other, finishing off with a game of peg tag. Ask the children about that one!!

The dark clouds that had been predicted started to come our way, so we decided to head back to our launch point for a picnic. Unfortunately the rain came before we got back so it was a rather frantic jump out of the boats to head under the trees for shelter. The trees provided absolutely no shelter at all but, even though we were soggy, with soggy food and soggy ‘yellow mini eggs’, no one complained.

When the break in the clouds came, we took advantage and got back on the water. Julian and I headed back to the weir, whilst the children got back onto the water. By the time everyone arrived, Julian and I were out of our boats standing in the weir. With the help of Martin and James, all the children had the opportunity to travel down the weir in their kayaks. Not everyone wanted to have a go, but those that did loved it. Some children even had more than one go and some children, who initially didn’t want a go, changed their minds.DSC00655

At around 2.30pm it was time to head back, and the children helped us to carry the boats and equipment back to the trailer before getting changed.

I’m pleased to say that not one single child fell out of their boat during the whole day, and although not all of the children had met before by the end of the afternoon some new friendships had been formed.

Thanks go to all the parents for allowing their child/children to participate, to Steve, Martin, Tomi, James and Julian for their support on and off the water and to the children for joining in, having fun and for their impeccable behaviour.

Alison Holland

More pictures HERE