KEYSTONE CANOE CLUB ACTIVITIES
Activities can vary from year to year, so please check our Schedule
Page or Message Board for more information.
NEW YEAR'S DAY PADDLE
We are an active group who love outdoor activities. Since the club
was founded back in 1973, members have gotten together in winter for
cross-country skiing, snow shoeing, hiking and boating. The New
Year’s Day paddle has been a tradition for a long time. We usually do
a short paddling trip on New Year’s and enjoy the challenge of having
a great time while also staying warm. Look for us in cold-weather
gear on Tulpehocken Creek, on the Schuylkill River or at Blue Marsh Lake.
Anytime we are not paddling, we may be found hiking the byways around
Berks County. We enjoy many trails at Blue Marsh, for instance, and
also hike Nolde Forest, the Bartram Trail near Hamburg, the Pinnacle
Trail, various trails at Lake Ontelaunee, Neversink Mountain trails
and many other places.
It’s a wonderful thing to have access to the clean, warm waters of our
local high school pool in wintertime. We often have 17-20 boaters
practicing their roll, playboating or just stretching their boating
muscles after a long layoff. Participants must be a KCC club member
and also choose one of the categories of ACA membership. The cheapest
way to go is the $5 ‘Event Membership’ or you can join for $30
individual or $40 family for a full year. Boats must be clean, so
plan on taking them to the carwash or hose them out to flush out the
stinkbugs, leaves and assorted debris. Check the dates on our message
board. Usually we have six sessions, with an alternate, held at
Muhlenberg High School in Laureldale, just off the 5th St. highway.
Sessions are 6-8 PM.
We hold a Beginners Boating Workshop in mid-July, 1-4 PM through Berks
Parks and Recreation, at the Stilling Basin below Blue Marsh Dam. The
cost is minimal, and registration is through Berks Parks and
Recreation. Ages 10-adult. Learn the basics of strokes, safety,
clothing and try out various boats. Contact: 610-374-2944 to register.
We really enjoy paddling out to a quiet location and having a potluck
picnic. Whatever paddlers bring, we share. Usually there’s a
grillmeister who serves up delicious burgers and hotdogs too.
Locations may include launching at Gibraltar and picnicking at an
island about an hour downstream. Then we take out at Union Township.
Other locations may be at a state park such as Marsh Creek or at Blue
We are a varied group of paddlers who enjoy all sorts of boating
venues. Our members include whitewater boaters, sea kayakers, canoe
paddlers, flatwater enthusiasts, stand up paddleboarders and kayak
fishermen. Some paddlers simply can’t choose any one aspect of the
sport, and enjoy paddling anytime, anywhere in any boat possible. Our
trip schedule comes out usually at the beginning of March and offers a
wide variety of trips that may be local (Schuylkill River, Lehigh
River, Tulpehocken Creek), or may be in surrounding states. Rivers in
the NJ Pinelands, Delaware River, Prime Hook DE, Chesapeake Bay, New
York state, Pennsylvania Grand Canyon, Lake Erie and many other places
are favorites. Trip leaders are listed as contact persons for each
trip on the schedule.
We meet in March, April, May, September, October, November at
Muhlenberg Township Recreation Building off River Road, which is an
exit off Rte. 12. Most of those meetings have an interesting program
with a boating or conservation theme. After the program, we have a
short business meeting. Meetings are 7:30-9 PM, usually but not always
on the fourth Tuesday of the month. The November meeting is usually
moved back a week because of Thanksgiving, for instance. In December,
we do not have a regular meeting, but we have a Christmas party. The
date of the party can vary. Check our Event/Trip Schedule for times,
locations and special information about our meetings, workshops and
trips throughout the year.
We enjoy a special relationship with Schuylkill River Greenways, and
try to help where we can. We serve the Monday luncheon during the
Schuylkill River Sojourn, for instance. Our volunteers set up tables
at Kerper’s Landing (Penske), bring special healthy salads, provide
sandwiches, fruit, snacks, and drinks to refresh the tired and hungry
paddlers on the Sojourn. It’s a fun and worthwhile service which we
enjoy doing. We do our part to help support the Sojourn to bring
attention and publicity to Berks County, particularly the Schuylkill
River. Eventually such projects result in improved funding for
special projects that benefit our entire area.
GET OUTDOORS DAY
Another special relationship that we enjoy is with the folks at Blue
Marsh Lake. They organize a special day in mid-June for local
organizations to display their information to the public. We
participate by handing out our brochures, answering questions, and
providing an informational program about an aspect of boating. During
the event, we also lead a paddle out on Blue Marsh Lake for anyone
with their own boat.
SPECIAL CLINICS AND WORKSHOPS
Keystone Canoe Club sponsors special clinics and workshops, depending
on need and interest. Each year is different: a SeaKayaking Rescue
clinic, a Whitewater Skills Series, First Aid Workshop and other
events may be scheduled from time to time. Check the Event/ Trip
Schedule and our Message Board for more information.