Voting in the inaugural Canoe & Kayak Awards has closed, with more than 12,000 ballots cast for the most inspiring people, expeditions and films in our sport.

The awards kick off with live webcasts from the red carpet on Thursday, Aug. 2 at 6:00 p.m. Mountain time (8:00 Eastern, 5:00 Pacific). The first winners will be announced promptly at 7:30.

An all-star cast of presenters will announce the winners and distribute the bling.

Scott Lindgren, who led the Tsangpo expedition 10 years ago, will present Expedition of the Year.

American Whitewater Executive Director Mark Singleton will present the Paddle With Purpose Award.

Whitewater pioneer Rob Lesser will present the Male Paddler of the Year Award.

Risa Shimoda, the first woman to run the Green River Narrows, will present Female Athlete of the Year.

NRS founder Bill Parks will present the Lifetime Achievement Award.

Steve Fisher will present Movie of the Year. Later in the evening, Fisher will premier the trailer of "The Grand Inga Project," his much-anticipated film about the first descent of the world's highest-volume rapids. Fisher and his Inga expedition teammates Tyler Bradt, Ben Marr and Rush Sturges are nominated for the Expedition of the Year Award.

Stay tuned to and facebook/canoeandkayak and #ckawards for announcements, photos, videos and winner's reactions throughout the evening.

Those of you fortunate enough to be in Salt Lake City for the awards should be sure to arrive early, as attendance is strictly limited to 400 people. Free beer and bar service will continue until prime sponsor ZEAL Optic's line of credit is tapped out.