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Science, Conservation, and Outdoors Events with our Friends and Partners

Upcoming Events in Greater Portland to Get You Excited About Paddling Season!

Portland Paddle partners with a number of excellent non profit organizations around the greater Portland and Casco Bay region to preserve natural and open space, protect wildlife and ecosystems, and spread the joys of outdoor recreation. We are excited to share just some of the events these partners have coming up in the next few months with you.

A group of 20-30 women pose for a photo with the ocean in the background

Excited participants from SailMaine’s 2023 Maiden Maine programming

  • SailMaine and the Roux Institute will be hosting a screening of the documentary film Maiden Friday April 26th at 6:30pm. Maiden chronicles the efforts of the first all-female crew to compete in the Whitebread Round the World sailing race. The screening is the first in this year’s annual Maiden Maine series, a SailMaine program for female sailors and those who want to become sailors!
  • Friends of Casco Bay’s regular series of educational talks continues with Coffee with the Casco Bay Keeper: Eelgrass. Members of the FoCB team will discuss the importance of eelgrass to the ecosystem, as a nursery for many different species, and as a provider of ecosystem services to humans. They will also discuss threats to eelgrass here in Casco Bay. You can check out recordings of past chats here, covering a variety of topics, including PFAs in Casco Bay and stormwater runoff.
A motor boat cruises through a small harbor

FoCB and GMRI both do important work to study, clean, and protect Casco Bay, its Watershed, and the Gulf of Maine – photo courtesy of FoCB

  • Kindling Collective is a queer-centered gear library and education center creating an accessible pathway to outdoor experiences in Maine (Wabanaki Confederacy Territory). They aim to build community and support people in growing and sustaining relationships with the natural world. They have a number of upcoming events including a workshop on foraging edible and medicinal plants, their first birthday party, several intro to whitewater lessons, and more!
Several people on paddleboards in flat water

Kindling Collective and More Women+ Surf both work to increase access to and diversity in the outdoors

  • More Women+ Surf and Root Wild Kombucha will be hosting a used gear sale and gathering April 28th from 12 to 5pm. More Women+ Surf is a local non-profit which works to expand diversity and access to the outdoors, particularly through surfing, paddleboarding, and skateboarding. The gathering will include expert panelists, food, music, and art vendors. All proceeds from the gear sales will go to support MWS’ programming and unsold gear will be donated to other non-profits.
  • Southern Maine Sea Kayaking Network will be hosting their second annual season kick off “Stone Soup” event on June 8th at Payson Park. SMSKN is a community of sea kayakers from around southern Maine, who come together to build skills, spread the love of the sport, and paddle together. Stone Soup is an on land event. Come to meet members of the club and learn about what makes sea kayaking so fun!
SMSKN and Portland Paddle are also partnering on two members only classes this season, one on navigation, and one on rescue skills.
  • The Maine Association of Sea Kayak Guides and Instructors (MASKGI) will host their annual “Training Day” again this year. This is an excellent opportunity to build safety and group leading skills for anyone who goes out with others on the water, whether you are a registered Maine guide, a member of a sea kayak club, a school group or summer camp trip leader, or just the unofficial leader of your group of paddling buddies! Training Day will include clinics appropriate for a number of different skill levels, as well as on land workshops and a used gear sale.
Sea kayakers practicing boat over boat T rescues

Safety first! Rescues are an important skill in sea kayaking

  • Royal River Conservation Trust is hosting three guided walks this spring in different preserves in the Royal River Watershed. The Wescustogo Treks are Wabanaki-led hikes, intended for indigenous and non-indigenous people alike, designed to explore and acknowledge the rich history of Native American culture along the Royal River (Wescustogo) and in Maine as a whole. There are two hikes remaining in the series, one at Spear Farm Estuary Preserve May 4th 2024 10am, and one at the planned River Elf Preserve, date and time TBD. These and many other expert led opportunities for learning and volunteering can be found at their events page.

When you purchase a membership you get free rentals for four months – and lots of other benefits. If you paddle regularly you’ll save lots of money over the course of the summer, and it will be easier than ever to get on the water.