We are two small clubs with a big passion for water paddle sports. The Canoe and Kayak Club has been apart of the Nanaimo Community since 1987, and the Rowing Club since early 1990's. We have a modest home in Loudon Park, Long Lake. The two clubs operate in a small cinder block building with modest public washrooms. We also share a fenced in area that houses our fleet of boats. The facility now is starting to crumble and the two not for profit clubs have been trying hard to raise money, which has been a big challenge. A new building would mean a great deal to the community of Nanaimo, and help getting there would be amazing. Between the two clubs 1000-2000 users a year that flows through our community programs and summer camps. Long Lake is also a hot spot for families to take their families swimming, fishing and boating. An updated facility would be a dream come true. The clubs also have year round programs for youth and adults competing in Provincial and National competitions. The Rowing club is known for achievements in para-rowing, and the Canoe Kayak club has grown a hand full of World Canoe Champs our proudest is Nicole Haywood. To be able to share this life time sport would be amazing. It promotes healthy living, being active and friendships for life. We are two sports with big passions that are rarely talked about, we would like to change that.
Nanaimo is a sport loving town, big on soccer, hockey and base ball. Our love of water paddle sports is at the bottom, unless it is recreational. We are trying to change that. Because our boathouse is so small and we are a quiet bunch we enjoy hosting open houses giving the opportunity for people of all ages to get on the water at a low cost. We do two big open houses a year, one is a paddle a thon. We go to expo events, July 1st events and schools to try and bring awareness of the sport.
We are two sports with big passions that are rarely talked about, we would like to change that.
Canoe Kayak and Rowing is a growing sport in Nanaimo. I think that we are best known for our summer camps for ages 8-14. If you talk to people and say that you are apart of the Canoe Kayak Club or that it is on Long Lake they usually say, "My son or daughter went to a few of those camps and love it". It is a place of gathering and calmness for the community. There is nothing like being on the water.
When I got older I signed my daughter in kayaking, and she loved it and decided to start competing. So my husband and I went with her to her first regatta. I was amazed at the sportsmanship. Clubs coming together helping each other to get kids on the water. Sharing life vests, paddles, boats and athletes. It was amazing and refreshing. One group would need one athlete to fill a 4 person kayak. I was so happy that sportsmanship and getting kids active was the main goal.
Ashley. She was the Head Coach for NCKC for 10 years. She started with the club in the 90's as a teen athlete, & competed up the National level. After graduation, Ashley worked as a kayak guide for years after a while came back to NCKC to Coach the youth sprint team and run the programs. She has been the heart of the club, growing it to what it is today. It is a club that encourages a healthy lifestyle on the water. Sadly she retired from NCKC this year.