This year, the whitewater canoeing club Les Portageurs and the Kayak Valleyfield club, and both provincial organizations, Eau Vive Québec and the FQCK, have the honor of organizing the North American Championships.
This event will take place on the whitewater site of the Saint-Charles River, in Valleyfield, from the 7th to 9th of July 2017.
The North American Championships are organized annually. It welcomes participants from various experiences of all ages and from all over North America.
In addition to a week of pre-competition activities, participants will have the opportunity to observe and compete with the best North American paddlers. Spectators will have prime space to watch the competition as well.
The event usually gathers from 80 to 150 amateur canoeists. They are also avid outdoors enthusiasts. They are mainly from Canada and the United-States. There will also be many spectators on site.
The event consists of bringing the paddling community together in a friendly and warm atmosphere during a full week of activities for all. Initiation, training and development sessions will be held throughout the week to share the wonderful Kayak Valleyfield site.
The official competition will be held during the last three days to determine the best North American paddlers, all in a festive and friendly environment. Different categories of competitions are set up to determine the winners.
The St-Charles River site will welcome competitors as well as all visitors to this magnificent event. Podiums, reception points, conveniences, kiosks of various paddling companies and kiosks for food and drinks will be available in order for all to have a pleasant experience.
In the heart of the city, the St. Charles River is well equipped for paddlers of all levels. This kayak and canoe site, fully landscaped artificially, has a controlled natural flow of water throughout the year in addition to being partially enlightened. We can navigate all year long even during winter.
The whitewater site also has been maintained meticulously since the beginning of its creation. Several redevelopment and security phases took place in order to ensure its sustainability. With more access to inputs and outputs, safety is never compromised. KayakValleyfield gives itself the duty to never compromise the maintenance of site quality.
The site was officially designated in 2002 for paddling by the city and there are an average of 300meters of rapid Class I to Class III. The site is especially good for slalom races because of the water level which is controlled at the source and is yearlong stable. The North American Championships U23 of 2009 and the National Championships of 2004 took place on the river.
Since KayakValleyfield has been running its yearlong activities on the site for an average of 20 years, the club and the river is fully equipped to host several major event. It is yearlong equipped of an average of 25 gates with pulleys and ropes and can offer infinites possibilities with the multiple pools and eddies.
Valleyfield has a stretch of river with great combination of rapids, clear water and regular flow. This site has been used for several slalom races for canoe clubs in the area as well as the Canadian National Whitewater Slalom in 2012. It is also the site of various day camps and classes for the paddlers. The flatwater is also used for competition such as canoe-polo.
Being in the downtown area provides plenty of grocery stores, restaurants, pharmacy and different services around. We are also close to two campings and a hotel where we managed a deal for our foreign friends.
The site is spectator-friendly: there is plenty of parking space, easy landing of your gear, platform to view the race and a trail along the river shore. It is also wheelchair accessible. Plus, commodities are well serviced nearby.
We will have outhouses on site.
For several years, the two federations and the two clubs have organized many different events and competitions. Ridership and participation rates continue to increase annually. The organization is also proud to count on the City of Salaberry-de-Valleyfield to offer commodities and resources. The team can therefore canvass all social networks. The distribution will be made via all North American associations, clubs and members.
Having the two provincial federations involved directly in the organization of the event, this major aspect will ensure rigorous standards, accreditations and the security aspect of the event.
The involvement of the two federations will also provide provincial and Pan-Canadian visibility.
In the past four years, the Portageurs have organized an annual slalom race with great success.
Kayak Valleyfield is also manager of the whitewater site and the organizer of various national level championships.