SCUGOG: Those who have participated before in the annual Canoe the Nonquon in Scugog have likely run into Paul Seaman.
In the 47 years that Canoe the Nonquon has ran, Mr. Seaman has only missed two of them, when he was participating in car races. He is planning to participate in the 48th annual event this Saturday, June 4.
Mr. Seaman told The Standard, one of the things that has kept him participating in the event over the years is that his friend Alex Lawrence has been to every race since the event started.
“My goal is to get Alex to the 50th,” he said. “It is the same situation as any other event that you go to every year.”
He also added that the event has become a “personal challenge” to him. Mr. Seaman also stressed, the key to being successful, in the event, is getting fit beforehand.
“Three or four years ago, I was so exhausted in the lake and I had hoped that the canoe would tip,” he said. “What I did the next three years was I spent a lot of time in the gym beforehand to prepare and it made a real incredible difference.”
Mr. Seaman said that the first few years the event ran, competitors had another incentive to finish the race, as there were butter tarts at the finish line.
“We used to say, we are almost at the butter tarts,” he said.
For the most part, the event has been smooth sailing for him, over the years, however there is one moment of panic that sticks out to him.
“One year, we were using a canoe that was basically an insurance write off and we went over a horrendous beaver dam,” he said. “We heard a large cracking noise and immediately jumped out because we knew the history of the canoe.”
Mr. Seaman added, there were other times when the tides were rough, and water would splash in the canoe, making the event that much more difficult.
He said, that he has not yet decided when he will stop competing in the annual fundraiser event.
“I would like to make 50 events and then we will decide,” Mr. Seaman said. “If we still feel like we can do it after that, we may just decide to only do the river portion.”
People can participate in races for the 48th annual event, anytime between 8 a.m. until 10:30 a.m.
Registration takes place at the Latcham Centre on Friday, June 3 from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. and Saturday, June 4 from 7 a.m. until 10 a.m. The minimum race entry fee is $50 per Canoe, Kayak or Stand Up Paddleboard.