WINNIPEG — This is one canoe race that doesn’t require water or paddles. Let us explain.
The Wild Winter Canoe Race returns for another season on February 16 at a new location. The unique winter event challenges people to race a canoe on the snow and will find itself in the spacious Shaw Park.
“We are thrilled with the park as our new location. It offers many advantages to both racers and spectators including stadium seating, heated suites, food court and bar as well as indoor washrooms,” said Karen Menkis, chair of the organizing committee.
“On the field, we expect teams will appreciate the lower wind velocity.”
Organizers have also added the Fam Jam Snow Tube Challenge to make the event more inclusive. The challenge invites parents to strap on a pair of snowshoes while one child jumps into a snow tube to be towed down the 200-foot course at lightning speed. Three categories for children range from ages six to 11 years of age. Prizes will be awarded in each category for the fastest competitors.
The Wild Winter Canoe Race launched in 2016 and follows the same guidelines: teams of five dressed in theme gear racing canoes down a 450- foot, snow-packed course in the outfield at Shaw Park.
The friendly competition includes some serious prices, such as five Via Rail passes for two people to Churchill, a day at Thermea, private use of a Winnipeg Goldeyes sky suite, 25 Landmark Cinema movie passes and 10 full festival passes to Festival du Voyageur.
Funds from the 2019 race will benefit the Sharing Together-Partager Ensemble Fund, a collaboration between the St. Amant and DASCH Foundations.
Registration is limited to 60 teams (300 racers) and fills up quickly. Training sessions will be held February 3 and 9 from 1-3 p.m. at Shaw Park. To register, email [email protected] or visit wildwintercanoerace.com.