Category: Boating

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Second Annual Ohio Boating Summit Set for March

COLUMBUS, OH – The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) will hold the second annual Ohio Boating Summit on Wednesday, March 23, at the Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center, located at 2201 Fred Taylor Drive on the Columbus campus of The Ohio State University (OSU). People interested in paddling, fishing or boating in Ohio are encouraged to attend this summit offered by the ODNR Division of Watercraft.

“Ohio is a boating destination for families that enjoy boating together, but don’t always have the time to travel far from home,” said Mike Miller, chief of the ODNR Division of Watercraft. “We are excited to provide them with a conference to learn more about improved boating opportunities and innovative trends in recreational boating.”

The summit will provide an opportunity for a number of experts to share their experiences and create a dialogue between ODNR boating constituents, boating partners and the public. This summit will encourage a forum for networking while educating attendees on the current topics and trends in boating in the Buckeye State.

The keynote speaker will be Brewster Rhoads, former executive director for Green Umbrella, an organization that has worked to combine the efforts of many environmental and outdoor organizations in the Greater Cincinnati region.

Presentation topics include:

  • Paddling Destinations and Activities
  • The Ohio River: Unveiling Ohio’s Best Kept Boating Secret
  • Life Jacket Trends and the Wear It! Campaign
  • Innovations in Side Scan Sonar
  • Examining Factors of Recreational Boating Accidents
  • Caesar Creek Marina Project
  • Post-Summit OSU Student and Professional Networking Reception

The one-day conference will be held from 8:45 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. New this year, immediately following the summit, is an OSU and ODNR natural resources networking reception that is free for all interested students and professionals. Registration is $25 for individuals, $10 for groups of six or more and students are free with a valid student ID. The opportunity to earn continuing education units (CEU) credits for this event is available. Lunch may be purchased for $11.50 for people who preregister for the summit.

Registration is available online or by credit card, check or cash the day of the summit beginning at 8 a.m. or by contacting Dawn Potter at 614-265-6412 or or Susan Sheley at 614-265-6485 or Doors open at 8 a.m. For more information on the 2016 Ohio Boating Summit or registration, go to

The ODNR Division of Watercraft is responsible for boating safety, education and law enforcement on all waters of the state. This statewide area includes the near shore area along 451 miles of the Ohio River, approximately half the entire surface area of Lake Erie, more than 605 inland lakes and more than 60,000 miles of inland streams, rivers and other waterways.

ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at

Photo by Ryan Stanton

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Kids' Life Jacket Loaner Stations Needed

Life Jacket (PSF)

Life Jacket (PSF) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

ANNAPOLIS, Md., March 1, 2013 — The sad truth about boating and kids is that children don’t always wear a correctly sized life jacket, and some kids even go without simply because of poor planning. But it doesn’t have to be this way. With a life jacket loaner site in your area, boating parents can borrow a properly fitting life jacket for the day or weekend at no cost. If you operate a waterfront business, organization or government agency, you can help by applying to become a new loaner site for the BoatUS Foundation for Boating Safety and Clean Water’s Life Jacket Loaner Program for Kids.

The largest and longest running free nationwide life jacket loaner program offers a range of child and teen-sized life jackets at over 500 loaner sites nationwide. Since the program began nearly twenty years ago, at least three children’s lives have been saved by wearing a BoatUS Foundation loaner life jacket and each year life jackets are loaned out over 140,000 times. The boating non-profit is looking to add at least 40 new life jacket sites this year.
There is no cost to host a loaner site, but applications will only be accepted until March 31st, 2013, and those that meet the program’s guidelines will be posted to the Foundation’s Facebook page for public voting. “We want applicants to help spread the word about keeping kids safe with our life jackets, and also draw positive publicity to their business or club,” said Outreach Manager Alanna Keating.
After public voting, each location that is accepted into the program will receive a life jacket loaner “kit” – a protective container that holds various sized life jackets for kids, signage, promotional materials and easy-to-use sign-out sheets to track usage. The program is simple for those hosting a location as well as for boaters, anglers and sailors needing a kid’s life jacket. “All we ask for in return is that the life jackets are available for free to the boating public in a readily accessible but secure location, and hosts periodically let us know how the program is going,” added Keating.

To apply or for more information on the program or the life jacket laws in your state,

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ODNR Wants Your #Boating Photos

Sailboat and Kayak

Sailboat and Kayak (Photo credit: lcthulou)

COLUMBUS, OH- Photography enthusiasts willing to capture the essence of Ohio’s recreational boating and spread the joy of being on Ohio’s waters can submit their photos to the OhioDepartment of Natural Resources’ Division of Watercraft. Selected images will be highlighted in an online photo gallery.

The 2012 “Enjoying the Water” photo challenge is an opportunity for photographers, age 18 and older, to reveal their passion for Ohio’s spectacular boating opportunities. Photographs taken between Dec. 1, 2011, and Nov. 30 on Ohio waters can be submitted to the Division of Watercraft through Nov. 30.

Submissions must be the original work of the photographer and can portray any type of legal and safe boating related activity on any kind of registered watercraft. They can incorporate shoreline landscapes, wildlife or people enjoying a variety of boating activities. Both black and white and color photographs will be accepted. All submissions become the property of the Ohio Division of Watercraft.

Outstanding photographs will be featured on the Watercraft website and Facebook photo gallery. These photos may also be used to promote safe, responsible boating through the website and publications.

For guidelines and additional information, visit To enter, send an email to with the attached digital photo.

ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Information about ODNR programs and recreational facilities is available online

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Ohio State Park Boat Lottery Deadline Aug. 31st

Lake Erie Islands. This was taken from atop th...

Image via Wikipedia

COLUMBUS, OH – Boat owners wishing to rent public boat docks at several popular Ohio State Park lakes have until Wednesday, August 31 to enter lottery drawings used to select renters for available docks. Application forms are now available through the individual park offices.

Lottery drawings will be held in September for boat docks at Alum Creek, Buck Creek, Buckeye Lake, Cleveland Lakefront, Deer Creek, Delaware, Lake Milton, Middle Bass Island, Paint Creek, Rocky Fork and West Branch state parks.

Completed forms may be submitted in person to the respective parks by Wednesday, August 31, or sent by certified mail/return receipt.  Only one application per boat is permitted, and must be submitted by the boat owner.  Lottery applicants must be able to show current proof of boat ownership or lease at the time of entry, and may be required to show a photo ID.  Boats titled to dealerships are not eligible.

The drawings are held on or before the third Saturday in September.  Applicants need not be present to win, and the winning lottery applicants will be notified by the park.  Persons selected by the lottery are entitled to renewal privileges for up to five years.  Renewals may be completed in person or on-line on the Ohio State Parks website,

Contact the individual park offices for specific details on allowable boat sizes, dock amenities, and dock rental fees, as well as other application procedures.

In addition to the parks conducting the September lotteries, several state parks have seasonal docks available for rent on a first-come first-served basis.  They include A.W. Marion and Buckeye Lake in central Ohio; East Harbor, Grand Lake St. Marys, Indian Lake, Kiser Lake, Lake Loramie, and Mary Jane Thurston in northwest Ohio; Geneva, Guilford Lake, Mosquito Lake, Punderson, and West Branch in northeast Ohio; Burr Oak, Dillon, Salt Fork, and Shawnee in southeast Ohio; and Caesar Creek, Cowan Lake, and Hueston Woods in southwest Ohio

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR web site at


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100 Days of Summer: June 5- Go Windsurfing

A few years ago, “Surf the North Shore” shirts were a popular area fad. I Always thought they were ironic. I mean, who would surf in Ohio?

Well Actually, This Guy:

Or, If Lake Erie is a challenge, try windsurfing of Barber Point at Moraine State Park– It’s so popular there, its featured on their web site.

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100 Days of Summer: June 3- Kayak Mill Creek Park

Why Feature two posts the first week for Kayaking? Well, because right now I’m getting a ton of hits on the kayaking page from Google. People seem to be discovering the advantages of paddle sports in our region.

And why not? We’ve got whitewater at McConnells Mill and on the Yough, Fishing and scenic rivers on Ohio’s Water trails, Lake and Pond paddling, and sea kayaking on Lake Erie. We’ve got it all.

And in the fact that Kayaking and Canoeing are relatively easy to learn, pretty cheap, and provide a great return on your investment, and you can see why more and more people are discovering the hobby.

And it’s incredibly easy to get started. Grab a boat and head to lake Newport of Glacier in Mill Creek for some easy paddling and to get your feet wet, so to speak.

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100 Days of Summer: June 1- Canoe the Mahoning River

Canoe City Metropark,  has been the put-in to the Mahoning River since 1920.  18 Acres in Leavittsburg, It’s a small picnic area. Bring your fishing poles too: It’s a great fishing spot.

Trumbull Canoe Trails Paddle Club is sponsors events at this park, so check out their website for upcoming dates.

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100 Days of Summer: 100 Recreational Areas Within 100 Miles

Within 25 Miles

Within 50 Miles

Within 75 miles

Within 100 Miles

How To Use this List:

  • I’ve kept State Parks and related State Forests as two lines. This might be cheating, but they usually offer different experiences.
  • Each Link goes directly to the appropriate site, not to a directory, wherever possible.
  • Scroll down to your favorite area. Look right above it. Have you been here? How about the area right below it?

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100 Days Of Summer: Kayaking and Canoeing

Where to Go?

Canoe City Park– Warren Area Park with Fishing and Put-ins to the Mahoning River

Ohio Water Trail Maps– Muskingum, Kokosing, Miami and More. Ohio Kayaking rivers listed, mapped and reviewed

Little Beaver Creek– Site with Put-in Maps

Lake Arthur– Moraine state park. Windsurfing is popular.

Brady’s Run– 28 Acre lake in 2000 acre park East of Columbiana

McConnell’s Mill State Park Nice, But Dangerous Area On Slippery Rock Creek.

Mill Creek– Lake Newport and Lake Glacier Boating Regs

Mohican– The Clear Fork of the Mohican River.

Ohio River Reviews– From PA also.

OhioPyle– Large Whitewater area on the Yough River- Rapids Map

Pymatuning– Small HP fishing boats and lots of sail and kayaks.

Kayak and Canoe Groups Near NE Ohio

Trumbull Canoe Trails– Local Warren Based club for Kayakers and Canoers.

Mahoning River Consortium– Political action group leading the way for the restoration and development of the Mahoning River.

41 Degree North Kayakers– Cleveland based Kayak Club offers trips, classes, sales, and more. Well worth checking out

Bradstreet Sea Kayakers– Another Cleveland based group. Paddles on Lake Erie.

KeelHaulers Canoe Club– Lots of clinics and classes

Three Rivers Rowing Pittsburgh Kayak, Canoe and Dragon Boats

Lake Arthur Sailing Club
-Moraine state park.

Venture Outdoors– Located on the Point in Pittsburgh, Large outdoor group has several classes and trips. Paddle around downtown and see the sights!


Crescent Bay Boat Rental– Lake Arthur, Moraine State Park.

Kayak Pittsburgh-Paddle the Point

Mill Creek– Boathouses on Lake Glacier and Lake Newport will rent paddleboats, canoes and Kayaks

Click Here for Great Canoes


Ohio Boating Regulations

Essential Gear: Sleeping Bags

Essential Gear: Water and Hydration

American Whitewater– Safety Code and Accident Archive, Regional River guides, and News.

NessMucking– Wierd name, informative site

On Kayaks

Sea Kayaking dot net.

Sea Kayaking Primer

Buying a Kayak

How To Portage a Canoe

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Ready, Set, Inflate Events May 21-27

A derivative of a personal water craft

Image via Wikipedia

COLUMBUS, OH – Recreational boaters are encouraged to stay safe on the water by properly wearing their life jackets anytime while boating. That’s the message again this year from the National Safe Boating Council and its boating partners that include the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), Division of Watercraft.

“Wearing life jackets anytime while boating is key to enhancing boater safety on the water and is a proven life saver,” said Bill McGarity, acting chief for the Division of Watercraft.

Among the 16 Ohioans who died in boating-related accidents on state waterways in 2010, none were wearing a life jacket when the accidents occurred, according to the Division of Watercraft. Investigations typically conclude that most boating-related accidents are preventable and that boaters increase their chances of survival when properly wearing an approved life jacket.

Ohio law requires that a U.S. Coast Guard approved life jacket of the correct size and type be worn by any person less than 10 years of age while aboard any vessel less than 18 feet in length while it is underway. The approved life jacket should be worn by any person regardless of age who is riding in a personal watercraft and by any person regardless of age who is being towed behind a boat for any reason such as tubing and waterskiing.

As part of its observance of National Safe Boating Week, the Division of Watercraft and City of Gahanna Department of Parks & Recreation will inflate to educate about the importance of wearing a lifejacket! Gahanna is honored to be host of Central Ohio’s 2nd Annual Ready Set Inflate Day world record attempt at Woodside Green Park, 213 Camrose Court, on Saturday, May 21.

Registered adults get to wear and inflate an inflatable life jacket, courtesy of the Division of Watercraft. Family members under the age of 18 will be fitted with non-inflatable life jackets, so they can be part of the world record.  Visit register to attend. Onsite registration and life jacket fitting is at 12 p.m. with inflation set for 12:30 p.m. on Saturday. The Ready Set Inflate Day mission is to raise awareness about the importance of wearing a life jacket.

Additionally, the Division of Watercraft will be conducting its “Wear It Ohio!” awareness campaign May 21-22 at East Fork State Park in Clermont County, May 21-22 at Caesar Creek Lake State park in Warren County and May 21 and May 28 at Portage Lakes State Park in Summit County to get Ohioans to pledge to wear life jackets anytime while boating and to share that message with other boaters. By making the pledge, eligible program participants age 18 and older qualify to receive on loan from the Division of Watercraft at no cost a brand new inflatable life vest for use during the 2011 boating season.

The Division of Watercraft and its boating partners also will be conducting free vessel safety inspections at public boat launch ramps around the state as well as boating safety education classes. The agency’s statewide boating safety awareness media advertising campaign is set to kickoff at the conclusion of National Safe Boating Week as the Memorial Day holiday weekend, May 27-30, signals the traditional start of the summer boating season.

“We care about the safety of our boaters and encourage them to observe safe boating practices so they may enjoy our waterways for years to come,” said McGarity.

Additional information on boating safety tips and programs is available online

The ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR Web site at


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