Paddle club to host event supporting mental health

Courtesy Midwest Paddle League

A lakeshore nonprofit will host its second annual paddle race to support mental health.

The Muskegon Lakeshore Paddle Club (MLPC) last week shared details of the Mona Lake Paddle Race, which will return at 7:30 a.m. Saturday, June 11, at Ross Park, at 82 Randall Road in Norton Shores.

Check-in will be at 7:30 a.m. ahead of a mandatory briefing at 8:30 a.m. Participants will take to the water at 9 a.m.

This year’s event features 5K and 10K distances with cash prizes and custom-made paddle trophies from Little Bay Boards in Petoskey. A recreational race also will take place at 11 a.m.

Proceeds from the event benefit the Mental Health Foundation of West Michigan, the Midwest Paddle League and USA SUP.

“We established the Muskegon Lakeshore Paddle Club as a way to bring the sport of paddle racing to the beautiful shores of West Michigan while raising money for important local causes like mental health and to support the economic development of our lakeshore region,” said Ryan Bryker, co-founder of the Muskegon Lakeshore Paddle Club.

New for the 2022 event are two standup paddle (SUP) clinics at Ross Park. The first clinic will be held from 6:30-8 p.m. Thursday, June 9, to provide paddlers with last-minute tips before Saturday’s event, and the second clinic will take place on Saturday immediately following the race.

Both clinics are for beginners to intermediate paddlers who are looking to improve their speed and technique on the water.

“Standup paddle boarders and kayakers of all skill and experience levels are welcome to join us,” Bryker said. “We’re proud to provide a family-friendly event for racers and spectators alike.”

The event will feature a food truck from Around Baking Company and merchandise and information about the organizations involved.

Spectators can view the entire race course from the shore.

Registration is available here until June 10.

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