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Beaver Sports sees record number of participants at Canoe/Kayak Race

Published: Jul. 14, 2021 at 5:51 PM AKDT
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - At least 60 canoes, kayaks and paddle boards dropped into the Chena River at Graehl Landing in front of Pro Music Tuesday to participate in the fourth Canoe/Kayak Race of the summer hosted by Beaver Sports. As the watercrafts continued to line up the Chena to begin the race, Tobias Albrigtsen with Beaver Sports acknowledged on the overhead speaker that it was the largest turnout for the biweekly event so far.

The casual race series concluded about four miles down river at The Boatel with prize categories for the competitive, but it welcomes those who want something a little more challenging than a traditional float down the Chena River.

The races are free, and Beaver Sports is not looking to host a lucrative event, but rather one that keeps in touch with the outdoor shop’s traditions.

“Canoeing is the roots of Beaver Sports,” said Albrigtsen. “In 1972, Beaver Sports was out of a garage selling canoes and we were the only way that people could get canoes in Fairbanks. The owner, Jim Whisenhant, would get them from the Lower 48 and drive them up by himself. It is within our roots, and we are just trying keep the hype going for being out on the water.

“And the Chena River is right in town, it is so special, I don’t think many other cities have such a huge river that goes through it like we do.”

The next and final Canoe/Kayak race hosted by Beaver Sports this summer is schedule for Tuesday, July 27th with more information available on their Facebook page.

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