Billed as the largest and oldest kayak symposium in North America, the 24th Annual West Coast Sea Kayak Symposium gets under way Thursday, Sept. 14 at 8 a.m. and runs through the weekend.

This years theme is ‘Women and Families’ but there are plenty of classes, demos and lectures to appeal to every paddler in the family.

The classes cover every skill level , from a Kayak 101 basic class held on land to introduce beginners to the sport to advanced classes on rescues, rolls and strokes. There will be on-water demos every day, weather permitting, and will include safety clinics , paddling techniques and rolling demos.

The kayaking Industry’s leading manufacturers, retailers and outfitters will showcase the latest gear and hot trips to go on in the exhibit hall and along the 1,400 feet beachfront where enthusiasts can try out various styles of kayaks and accessories.

For location, driving directions and the full schedule go to:

In the classroooms there will be classes and seminars on every kayaking aspect. Subjects range from kayaking photography to favorite destinations(Baja, Alaska and beyond) and how to navigate when you get there and this years theme – paddling with kids.

For the gear junkies in the family there will be an Exhibition and Retail Hall where local retailers offer great deals on paddling gear. There will also be two silent auctions with the proceeds going to local charities.

Sundays events will include an amazing Greenland Rolling Demo by Dubside and the popular Cardboard Kayak race will begin at noon. Stop by Dubside’s Greenland ropes apparatus demo on the beach. This is the secret to how Greenlanders keep flexible and in top shape during the long winters when paddling is not an option.

Read about last years exciting Cardboard Kayak Race.The race features a LeMan’s start, wacky boat designs, miles of duct tape and a huge crowd cheering on the contestants.

The fun doesn’t stop when the sun sets. Friday night features the Reel Paddle Film Festival with the best in paddle sports videography from 2006 and 2007. Saturday night’s double bill includes last years “Vacation from Hell” contest winners in Peru to the film ‘Pacific Horizons’ presented by Pacific Northwest videographer Bryan Smith . Wendy Killoran’s will give a presentation of her “‘Round the Rock; A Woman’s Sea Kayak Journey Around Newfoundland”. In 2006 Wendy successfully circumnavigated Newfoundland in Canada. Saturday night is sponsored by Canoe and Kayak Magazine with beverages once again being sponsored by the Port Townsend Brewing Company.

Tickets for the 3-day event are (per person): $150 3-day all access, $65 1-day all-access, and $30 1-day beach pass.
To register,get on-site accommodation information, or for details:

The event is sponsored by Subaru of America and hosted in partnership with Fort Worden State Park Conference Center.