Category: Press Release


Paddle Antrim Awards nearly $3,000 to the Region

Paddle Antrim announced it will award $2,965 to five projects that benefit Northern Michigan’s waterways through its Ripple Effect Mini Grant Program.

“We are pleased to support and enhance these local projects that align with our mission, focusing on collaboration instead of duplication” says Deana Jerdee, Paddle Antrim’s Executive Director. In the past four years, Paddle Antrim has awarded over $24,000 through this program.

Three projects focused on stewardship intiatives in the region. Antrim Conservation District was awarded $565 toward the installation of a rain garden in Ellsworth in conjunction with the school’s Lancer Leap program. The Boardman River Clean Sweep was awarded $400 for equipment to host a clean up on Torch River in August. The Au Sable Institute was awarded $500 toward installation of a greenhouse to grow their own plants for their REYS program which provides environmental education to 5th graders.

Two projects focused on improving access to local lakes. The Village of Bellaire was awarded $500 for continued development of a non-motorized boat launch at Richardi Park for the Chain of Lakes Water Trail.  Disability Network of Northern Michigan in collaboration with Leadership Charlevoix County was awarded $1,000 toward development of a non-motorized boat launch at Ferry Park in the City of Charlevoix.

Paddle Antrim’s Ripple Effect Mini-Grant Program awards grant to local non-profit and governmental organizations whose projects align with their mission to protect the water resources and enhance the economic vitality of the region through stewardship, education, improved water trail access and promotion of the waterways.  The funding comes from revenue earned through classes and events. The next round of funding will be in October 2019. To learn more about Paddle Antrim, the Ripple Effect grant program or the Chain of Lakes Water Trail, please visit www.paddleantrim.com.

DNR recognizes designation of the Chain of Lakes Water Trail

Elk Rapids, MI – On Friday June 14, Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Michigan Trails and Greenways Alliance staff gathered with representatives and supporters of the non-profit group Paddle Antrim to recognize the Chain of Lakes Water Trail as one of eight state designated water trails at a designation ceremony in Ellsworth Michigan, the start of this 80+ mile water trail in the pristine waters of Northern Michigan.

“Michigan is in a great position to work with partners to create this new, statewide water trails program,” said Paul Yauk, DNR statewide trail coordinator. “By designating these lakes and rivers as official water trails, we will shine even more light on these incredible natural resources. The Chain of Lakes Water Trail is a perfect example of a water trail in Michigan that will encourage outdoor recreation, healthy lifestyles and will serve as a regional destination to advance the local economy.”

The Chain of Lakes Water Trail, planned, coordinated and led by Paddle Antrim, is an extensive trail with over 80 miles of routes through 14 stunning lakes and rivers. This water trail is a inter-jurisdictional and public-private collaborative effort, with 81 access sites owned/managed by 17 governmental jurisdictions and non-profit organizations that stretches through four counties in Northwest Michigan (Antrim, Charlevoix, Kalkaska, and Grand Traverse).

“Michigan Trails and Greenways Alliance is pleased to support the recent designation of the Chain of Lakes as one of the first officially designated inland water trails in Michigan,” said Bob Wilson, Michigan Trails and Greenways Alliance executive director. “It’s a well-deserved designation due to the important role played by volunteers, by Deana Jerdee, the Paddle Antrim organization and by the local units of government that have so successfully built this trail and welcomed paddlers from all parts of the state.”

From the small upper lakes to Torch Lake, Michigan’s second largest inland lake, there is an incredible diversity of paddling opportunities, making it a destination for all paddlers. Paddler experiences include wildlife viewing, natural areas best explored paddle craft, sunken ships, island exploration, and great fishing opportunities. The communities of Ellsworth, Central Lake, Bellaire, Alden and Elk Rapids are located along the trail and make great destinations for launching, exiting, or resting from a paddle while enjoying the towns’ dining, shopping, lodging, and other recreational experiences. 

“Water trails are a wonderful way to connect local residents and visitors to the amazing waters of Northern Michigan,” said Deana Jerdee, Paddle Antrim Executive Director. “This water trail will not only have a significant positive impact on our local economy but will get people out and active on the water. We believe when people are engaged on the water, they will work to protect our water quality as well as our native plants and animals.”

Paddle Antrim is dedicated to a quality experience for paddlers out on the water, providing more than just the logistics of the trail.  Whether it is information on where to stop for ice cream, how to remove invasive species from your boat, or what kind of gear should you have, all of those messages are important to have a positive experience. Paddle Antrim is working to install signs and develop the maps and tools paddlers need to have a safe and quality experience while out on the water. 

During the paddling season, Paddle Antrim offers community paddle events and classes to get people active, out on the water, and improving their skills.  They also host the annual Paddle Antrim Festival, a two-day non-competitive paddle through the water trail and local events in each of the communities.  For more information on Paddle Antrim and the Chain of Lakes Water Trail go to www.paddleantrim.com


Paddle Antrim Festival offers great way to experience Northern Michigan’s Chain of Lakes Water Trail

Registration is now open for the 2019 Paddle Antrim Festival, September 12th-14th. Now in its fifth year, the Paddle Antrim Festival is the best way to experience the Chain of Lakes Water Trail and the quaint lakeside communities that surround it.  This fun, non-competitive event provides opportunities for all levels of paddlers to participate one or two days with many distance options available. In addition to two great days of paddling, there are three days of live music, great food and drinks for paddlers and the entire community. 

This event highlights the wide-range of paddling opportunities that Northern Michigan’s Chain of Lakes provides. The first day begins with a series of small calm lakes which is a must-see, perfect for all paddlers. The second day you can explore up to five lakes and two rivers including the tranquil Grass River Natural Area and the crystal blue waters of larger lakes such as Torch Lake. Paddlers will enjoy the charming communities of Ellsworth, Central Lake, Bellaire, Alden, and Elk Rapids as they make their way down the waterway. To make the weekend stress-free, meals and shuttle service can be added.

“We are excited to invite all levels of paddlers to grab their canoe, kayak or paddle board and experience the diversity of paddling available on our pristine waters”, says Deana Jerdee, Paddle Antrim executive director. “Over 150 paddlers come from all over the state and the country to experience the diversity of the pristine Chain of Lakes Water Trail and the wonderful hospitality each community has to offer.”

Beyond great paddling, the weekend kicks off Thursday night with live music and food available for the entire community. The Festival ends with a bang at the Final Bash Saturday night in Elk Rapids hosted by the Festival’s top sponsor, Short’s Brewing Company. This all-ages party is for paddlers and the entire community to come out and enjoy live music and great food and drinks. Short’s Brewing Company and sponsor Pearl’s New Orleans Kitchen, will be there serving up the most amazing food and finest brews for all to enjoy.

The Paddle Antrim Festival not only encourages folks to get out and enjoy the lakes and rivers but supports Paddle Antrim’s mission to protect the waterway by focusing on stewardship, education, and increasing access through development of the Chain of Lakes Water Trail.

For additional information on Paddle Antrim, the Chain of Lakes Water Trail or Paddle Antrim Festival, go online http://www.paddleantrim.com or contact Paddle Antrim at info@paddleantrim.com or 231-492-0171. 

Paddle Antrim receives funding for the Chain of Lakes Water Trail to promote regional tourism

Paddle Antrim is pleased to announce the Chain of Lakes Water Trail received a grant for $70,500 from the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development toward development of the Chain of Lakes Water Trail. This grant includes funding for installation of signage, development of a paddler’s guide, and marketing for the water trail to improve the experience for paddlers while out on the water.

“This water trail is truly a regional effort that will have a significant positive impact on our local economy” says Deana Jerdee, Paddle Antrim executive director. “It brings together four counties and many small communities to promote the area together as one regional voice.”

The Chain of Lakes Water Trail is an extensive trail system, providing over 80 miles of routes through 14 pristine lakes and rivers in Antrim, Charlevoix, Kalkaska, and Grand Traverse counties. From the small upper lakes to Torch Lake, Michigan’s second largest inland lake, there is an incredible diversity of routes, making it a destination for all levels of paddlers. Paddler experiences include encounters with wildlife, natural areas best explored on paddle crafts, sunken ships, island exploration, and great fishing opportunities. The four quaint lakeside villages provide great destinations for paddlers with the amenities they are looking for.

“This is a significant project for our region as trails bring dollars into places they serve,” says Caroline Kennedy, assistant village manager/clerk for the Village of Elk Rapids. “Trails like this attract visitors from near and far – who contribute to job growth in tourism-related opportunities such as our local restaurants, stores and lodging.”

Water trails are an important part of trails in the State of Michigan and the Chain of Lakes Water Trail is one of eight water trails recently designated by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Michigan Trails and Greenways Alliance’s executive director Bob Wilson supports the investment in trails by the State of Michigan.

“Michigan Trails and Greenways Alliance congratulates Paddle Antrim on this significant grant to help support their efforts to continue to be a leader in water trails in Michigan, “says Bob Wilson. “This is just another important sign of the growing awareness of the benefits water trails can provide to all Michiganders.”

For more information on the Chain of Lakes Water Trail or paddling events/classes on the water trail, contact Paddle Antrim at 231-492-0171 or www.paddleantrim.com

The original MDARD Press release can be found at https://www.michigan.gov/som/0,4669,7-192-47796-490701–,00.html

Ripple Effect Awards

Paddle Antrim announced it will award $2,400 to two projects that benefit Northern Michigan’s waterways through its Ripple Effect Mini Grant Program.

“Our Ripple Effect grant program provides a wonderful way for us to expand our impact by funding projects that support our mission of protecting our waterways and connecting people to these amazing waters through paddling” says Deana Jerdee, Paddle Antrim’s Executive Director. Grass River Natural Area was awarded funding for the design and construction of interpretive panels in their Nature Center.  Antrim County Emergency Management was awarded funding for an 800 mHz radio specialized for emergency communications to be used during special events and trainings for emergency responders.

Paddle Antrim’s Ripple Effect Mini-Grant Program awards grant to local non-profit and governmental organizations whose projects align with their mission to protect the water resources and enhance the economic vitality of the region through stewardship, education, improved water trail access and promotion of the waterways.  The next round of funding will be in May 2019. To learn more about Paddle Antrim and the Ripple Effect grant program, please visit www.paddleantrim.com.

Chain of Lakes Water Trail first designated water trail in Northern Michigan

Paddle Antrim is pleased to announce the Chain of Lakes Water Trail is the first designated water trail in Northern Michigan. The State of Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources recently designated eight water trails as part of its newly developed statewide water trail program. Water trails, a designated route along a river or lake designed for non-motorized watercraft like kayaks and canoes, positively impact the local economy, encourage healthy lifestyles, provide a sense of community and place, and encourage preservation of waterways.

“Water trails are a wonderful way to connect local residents and visitors to the amazing waters of Northern Michigan,” said Deana Jerdee, Paddle Antrim Executive Director. “This water trail will not only have a significant positive impact on our local economy but will get people out and active on the water. We believe when people are engaged on the water, they will work to protect our water quality as well as our native plants and animals.”

The Chain of Lakes Water Trail, led by Paddle Antrim, is an extensive trail with over 80 miles of routes through 14 pristine lakes and rivers. This water trail is a regional effort, with 81 access sites owned/managed by 17 governmental jurisdictions and non-profit organizations that stretches through four counties in Northwest Michigan (Antrim, Charlevoix, Kalkaska, and Grand Traverse).

From the small upper lakes to Torch Lake, Michigan’s second largest inland lake, there is an incredible diversity of paddling opportunities, making it a destination for all paddlers. Paddler experiences include wildlife viewing, natural areas best explored paddle craft, sunken ships, island exploration, and great fishing opportunities. The communities of Ellsworth, Central Lake, Bellaire, Alden and Elk Rapids are located along the trail and make great destinations for launching, exiting, or just taking a break.

Paddle Antrim is dedicated to a quality experience for paddlers out on the water, providing more than just the logistics of the trail.  Whether it is information on where to stop for ice cream, how to remove invasive species from your boat, or what kind of gear should you have, all of those messages are important to have a positive experience. Paddle Antrim continues to work to improve the trail and was recently awarded a grant from Rotary Charities of Traverse City to continue this work.

During the paddling season, Paddle Antrim offers community paddle events and classes to get people active, out on the water, and improving their skills.  They also host the annual Paddle Antrim Festival, a two-day non-competitive paddle through the water trail and local events in each of the communities.  For more information on Paddle Antrim and the Chain of Lakes Water Trail go to www.paddleantrim.com

The original Michigan DNR Press Release (12/20/18) can be found at https://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/MIDNR/bulletins/223bbe4?fbclid=IwAR0I0NN0LT6M0lZxRyIGNv33JxbHjiR4vpPcr4fyu5vJxXaiu3Q-yAhqOf4

Ripple Effect Grant Applications Due October 19th

Paddle Antrim is accepting applications for their bi-annual Ripple Effect Mini Grant Program. This competitive grant program funds projects that protect the waterways and connect people to them. Potential projects must focus on stewardship, education, or increasing accessibility to the lakes and rivers.

Since 2015, Paddle Antrim has awarded over $19,000 from income earned through their events.  Projects must be focused on the Elk River Chain of Lakes watershed or adjacent watersheds which impact Antrim County. Eligible applicants include Michigan-based non-profit organizations or governmental entities.

Applications must be submitted by 5:00 pm on Friday October 19, 2018 to be considered. More information can be found online at www.paddleantrim.com/ripple-effect.

Paddle Antrim Celebrates the Chain of Lakes

Paddle Antrim is ready to celebrate Northern Michigan’s Chain of Lakes at the Paddle Antrim Festival September 13-15th.  This event is highlighted by a two-day paddle through Antrim County’s Chain of Lakes and includes community events all weekend long for the entire community.

On Friday September 14th over 100 paddlers will launch from the Village of Ellsworth’s River Park and paddle up to 15 miles to the Village of Bellaire.  On Saturday, they will continue from Bellaire and paddle up to 27 miles to the Village of Elk Rapids.  “We are excited to share our pristine waters,” says Deana Jerdee, Paddle Antrim executive director. “Watching all of the paddlers launching from the sandy beach in Ellsworth together is a pretty amazing sight.”

There will be community events all three days and Paddle Antrim encourages the entire community to come out and be a part.  The Paddle Antrim Festival starts with the Kick-off Party on the 13th from 5:30-8:00 pm at Ellsworth Community Park. There will be great live music from Kellerville as well as opportunities for great food from the Cantina food truck. The party continues Friday afternoon from 2-5pm in Bellaire’s Richardi Park with music by Kenny T and outdoor games.

The Festival ends at the Final Bash Saturday night held at Short’s Brewing Company’s Production Facility (211 Industrial Park Dr. Elk Rapids).  This family friendly event features great food by Pearl’s New Orleans Kitchen, brews from Short’s Brewing Company, and live music by the Sleeping Gypsies and the Pistil Whips.  There will be outdoor games for everyone to enjoy.  The Final Bash is from 3:00-9:00 pm and entry is $5, free for those under 12.

For more information, please go online at http://www.paddleantrim.com, email info@paddleantrim.com or call 231-492-0171.

Experience Northern Michigan’s paddling routes and communities at the Paddle Antrim Festival

As the transition to fall begins, a local non-profit and four communities in Northern Michigan are gearing up for the 4th Annual Paddle Antrim Festival September 13-5th.  This premier event celebrates the Chain of Lakes and the great communities that surround it. With two days of great paddling and three days of community events with live music, outdoor activities, and food/drink, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

Kayakers and canoeists are invited for a fun, non-competitive event exploring up to 14 different lakes and rivers, including the turquoise waters of Torch Lake. Paddlers can go up to 15 miles on Friday and up to 27 miles on Saturday. While there are those who are up for the challenge, the event offers opportunities for all levels of paddlers – allowing participants to paddle either or both days and select where they would like to exit along the route. With options to add shuttles and meals, all of the planning can happen with a click of the mouse during registration.

Paddlers, friends and the entire community is invited to local celebrations all weekend long. Thursday from 5:30-8, the Festival kicks off in the Village of Ellsworth (6625 Bridge St) with live music from Kellerville and great food from the Cantina Food Truck. After the first day of paddling on Friday, the celebration continues in Bellaire at Richardi Park (100 E. Antrim St) from 2-5pm with live music from Kenny T.  The Festival ends with a bang Saturday at Short’s Brewing Company’s Production Facility (211 Industrial Park, Elk Rapids). Short’s will be pouring their finest brews and Pearl’s New Orleans Kitchen will be serving delicious food. There will be fun outdoor games for all ages and live music from The Pistil Whips and The Sleeping Gypsies to keep the party going.  All events are all ages and celebrations in Ellsworth and Bellaire are free. The Final Bash is $5 per person but free for paddlers, volunteers, and those 12 and under.

For additional information on the Paddle Antrim Festival, go online http://www.paddleantrim.com or contact Paddle Antrim at info@paddleantrim.com or 231-492-0171.

About Paddle Antrim

Paddle Antrim is a 501(c) 3 non-profit organization whose mission is to protect our water resources by using paddle sports to connect people to our waterways.  Through stewardship, education, improved water trail access, and promotion of our waterways we will increase water resources protection and enhance the economic vitality of the region.

 

Paddle Antrim Festival offers great experience on Northern Michigan’s Chain of Lakes Water Trail

Paddling is becoming an even more popular recreational activity and Paddle Antrim is offering paddlers a great way to get out on the water with the fourth annual Paddle Antrim Festival, September 13-15th. This Festival celebrates Northern Michigan’s waters and communities and highlights the diversity of the Chain of Lakes Water Trail.

The Paddle Antrim Festival is a fun, non-competitive event where paddlers can enjoy being out on Antrim County’s Chain of Lakes. There are opportunities for all levels of paddlers and can choose one or two days with many distance options available. This Festival includes three days of live music, great food and drinks for both paddlers and the entire community.

This event highlights the wide-range of paddling opportunities that Northern Michigan’s Chain of Lakes provides. The first day begins with a series of small calm lakes which is a must-see, perfect for all paddlers. The second day you can explore up to five lakes and two rivers including the tranquil Grass River Natural Area and the crystal blue waters of larger lakes such as Torch Lake. Paddlers will enjoy the charming communities of Ellsworth, Central Lake, Bellaire, Alden, and Elk Rapids as they make their way down the waterway. To make the weekend stress-free, meals and shuttle service can be added.

“We are excited to offer a paddling experience for all levels of paddlers to get out on the water”, says Deana Jerdee, Paddle Antrim executive director. “This is a great opportunity to highlight the different types of paddling the Chain of Lakes Water Trail offers and have the entire region come together to celebrate the remarkable waterways and region we live in.”

Beyond great paddling, the weekend kicks off Thursday night with live music and food available for the entire community. The Festival ends with a bang at the Final Bash Saturday night in Elk Rapids hosted by the Festival’s top sponsor, Short’s Brewing Company. This all-ages party is for paddlers and the entire community to come out and enjoy live music and great food and drinks. Short’s Brewing Company and sponsor Pearl’s New Orleans Kitchen, will be there serving up the most amazing food and finest brews for all to enjoy.

The Paddle Antrim Festival not only encourages folks to get out and enjoy the lakes and rivers but supports Paddle Antrim’s mission to protect the waterway by focusing on stewardship, education, and increasing access through development of the Chain of Lakes Water Trail.

For additional information on Paddle Antrim, the Chain of Lakes Water Trail or Paddle Antrim Festival, go online http://www.paddleantrim.com or contact Paddle Antrim at info@paddleantrim.com or 231-492-0171.