Missouri River Communities Network cancels Canoe for Clean Water

Wednesday, June 16, 2010 | 7:07 p.m. CDT; updated 7:24 p.m. CDT, Wednesday, June 16, 2010

COLUMBIA — The Canoe for Clean Water event has been postponed because of high flood levels.

The Missouri River Communities Network, which organized the event, made the decision after the Coast Guard suggested it be canceled. The Canoe for Clean Water event consists of a race, a float trip and a festival.

The area at Katfish Katy's Campground, where the festival stage would have been placed, is underwater, said Sarah Pennington, the event's coordinator. Instead, the Missouri River Communities Network will hold presentations Saturday about flooding.

"We thought we should embrace what is happening and give the public a safe place to come see the flooded river and learn about the ecology of it," Pennington said.

The educational presentations are tentatively scheduled from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. at the Katfish Katy's boat ramp, she said. Topics will include flooding, river ecology and trash.

Steve Schnarr, a manager for Missouri River Relief, will discuss his experience with trash on the Missouri River. He said he was impressed by the Canoe for Clean Water planners' quick reaction to the flood.

"People love to come down to the river and watch it when it's flooding," Schnarr said. "It's an amazing phenomenon. Adding an educational component about what they're looking at is kind of brilliant."

Pennington said the planners would have trouble finding open dates because a lot of other canoe races take place during the rest of the summer. Organizers hope to reschedule the event for the fall.

Pennington said she was optimistic about holding a race in October.

"It's a great month to be on the river," Pennington said. "You get the beautiful fall colors, and the weather shouldn't be a hundred degrees."

Go to to find out more about the educational event and to get updates about the race, float and festival.

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