Source: Paddleboard Specialists

Madison, WI: For the fourth year in a row, the Midwest proves best as the preeminent gathering for standup paddleboarding (SUP)—the Midwest Standup Paddle Festival—gains momentum for the summer of 2014.

 

Seasoned festival-goers and new attendees have an impressive list of opportunities to get out and enjoy SUP on Lake Monona in Madison, which is becoming a scenic hot spot for paddlers.

 “Our abundance of clean, flat water with easy public access create ideal conditions that make our area a favorite with SUP enthusiasts,” says Gary Stone, event director for the Midwest Standup Paddle Festival and owner of event sponsor Paddleboard Specialists, an online mail-order SUP retailer with a retail showroom in Madison. “Paddleboarding isn’t limited to the ocean. People in the Midwest are realizing that they have these amazing resources just minutes from home...and it’s all the more fun and accessible with a SUP.”

The Midwest Standup Paddle Festival lineup for July 11 and 12, includes Friday afternoon pro-led instructional clinics with Chase Kosterlitz, president of industry association SUPAA and rider for Bic Sport, and four-time Olympic paddler Jim Terrell of Quickblade Paddles. Following is a pre-event party at Hotel Red with a special, inspiring presentation by pro SUP racer and Werner Paddle team rider Dave Boehne, who will discuss embarking on your first SUP/surf trip.

The main event takes place on Saturday, with offerings that include on-land and water-based clinics led by national and local fitness professionals like Mona Melms, Kari Woodall and Suki Warda. Clinics run the gamut from “How to Choose a Paddle” to “Body Mechanics of SUP,” and “Learn to SUP” to “Parent/Child Paddle.”

Attendees have access to board and paddle demos with industry leaders, and the absolute largest selection of standup paddleboards in the Midwest to check out, tryout and purchase. For a separate entry fee, those interested can participate in a 6-mile/World Paddle Association-sanctioned open race or a 2-mile recreational race.

Garnering international attention will be a Guinness World Record® attempt for the Largest Paddleboard Yoga Class. The current record is 153 participants, and Tyler Leeper, owner of Brittingham Boats, which will be hosting the Midwest Stand Up Paddle Festival, is confident of breaking that.

“First of all, we have a large and strong yoga community in Madison,” says Leeper. “SUP yoga is another extension of that mind-body connection with the bonus of practicing in nature and on the water. And who doesn’t want to be a part of a Guinness record? Yogis and non-yogis will be thrilled to participate!”

This event is FREE and open to the public, and all are invited to come join in the family fun. Interested spectators, participants and racers can visit http://www.paddleboardspecialists.com/info_events.asp for further details and specific times. Registration can be found at https://paddleguru.com/races/MidwestStandUpPaddleFestival

On-land clinics, race spectating, gear browsing and Guinness World Record®  yoga class are all FREE. Additional fees for racing and water-based clinics are as follows:

Friday: Pro-led clinics, $75 each (board rental extra)

SUP Lessons, $15 in advance/$20 day of event

SUP Yoga, $20 in advance/$25 day of event

On-water demos of any/all boards or paddles $10

Mastering Buoy Turns clinic $20

2-mile Recreational race $59; 6-mile Open race $70 (pre-registration ONLY, no day-of-event registration)

Trophies will be awarded to top race finishers, plus there will be SUP product giveaways and prizes.  

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For further information about this event or to schedule an interview with Gary Stone, please call 877.F473.1199 or e-mail gary@paddleboardspecialists.com.

 Paddleboard Specialists is located at 5495 Catfish Court, Westport, Wis., 53597. Tel: 877.473.1199. Web: www.paddleboardspecialists.com.

Emily Attwood is Managing Editor of Athletic Business.