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Hudson River Whitewater Derby this weekend

Adirondack Adventure Festival also set

A paddler pushes down the Hudson River in 2012 during the Slalom Race of the Annual Hudson River Whitewater Derby in North River.

A paddler pushes down the Hudson River in 2012 during the Slalom Race of the Annual Hudson River Whitewater Derby in North River. Photo by Andy Flynn.

— It’s time to celebrate the 56th Annual Hudson River Whitewater Derby and 4th Annual Adirondack Adventure Festival May 3-5.

New this year for the Whitewater Derby is the Not-So-Wild-Downriver Race on Saturday, May 4, starting at the Fishing & Canoe Access, 2.5 miles west of North Creek on Route 28 (where the railroad tracks cross the highway) following the Slalom Races (about 2 p.m.). It will finish at Riverfront Park.

Whitewater Derby organizer Kate Nightingale suggested that the Not-So-Wild-Downriver Race is a good race for Scout groups, college outing groups, and Adirondack Mountain Club paddling clubs or for old-time racers who still canoe but have no interest in running the slalom or Sunday’s race.

The race fees are $20 for Slalom & Downriver, $15 for Novice Slalom, $10 for an additional Slalom race $10, and $10 for the new race. The Slalom Race on Saturday (10:30 a.m. start) runs in North River. The Downriver Race on Sunday (11 a.m. start) runs from North Creek to Riparius.

The Hudson River Whitewater Derby originated in North Creek in 1958 by the Johnsburg Fish and Game Club, started as a one-day 8-mile downriver race. There were 25 craft on the river representing 44 entrants.

Also, there is limited camping at the Ski Bowl Park the weekend of May 3-5. Call the town for more camping information at 251-2421.

The Adirondack Adventure Festival — Friday-Sunday, May 3-5 — is a weekend full of outdoor fun, entertainment, and family adventures around the Gore Mountain region.

This family-oriented event was created to increase the number of people visiting North Creek for the Whitewater Derby and offer other non-sports activities for paddlers’ families while they are in town.

“Every year we try to switch it up a little to keep it fresh,” said Lisa Salamon, executive director of the Gore Mountain Region Chamber of Commerce.

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