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Palmer River Festival

This hallmark paddling community celebration takes place on Sep 15-17, 2023. Take a clinic to improve your skills, absorb knowledge from industry vendors, connect with other paddlers and families and enjoy the live music entertainment on Saturday night.

Quick Details

Just Want to Hang Out

Palmer River Fest – A legendary paddling Festival!

September 15-17, 2023

This hallmark whitewater paddling festival is a great way to close out your paddling season!  Come connect, celebrate and help us fundraise for our kids programs and youth courses.

Paddler Co-op Executive Director Ryan O’Connor shares what makes Palmer River Fest such a memorable experience for those who attend.

The Festival Weekend – Friday Arrival, Saturday & Sunday Clinics, Hikes, Activities & Entertainment

Perfect for EVERYONE: Both land lovers & paddlers of all levels; brand new, beginner, intermediate or expert!

Here is what to expect:

  •  Saturday & Sunday: 4 Instructional Whitewater Clinics that will give you a glimpse into what a course with us will look like.  Courses are offered in a condensed format on Saturday am/pm and Sunday am/pm (Though our clinics are short & sweet, they are safely facilitated by our fully trained instructors).
  • Kid & Youth Friendly Whitewater Kayak Clinics (ages 8+)
  • For Non-Paddlers:
    • Guided interpretive hikes to hilltop views learning about local history, plants and wildlife, natural medicines and foraging
  • On-site camping Friday & Saturday for participants (tents only)
    • Though we welcome your trailer during our regular season, we can not accommodate trailers this weekend!
  • Live Music Saturday Night
  • Radical Raffle: Sweet Prizes & Swag!
  • PRF proceeds go towards funding our kid & youth programs
  • Saturday Lunch for Paddlers: if you are paddling, receive one Saturday lunch voucher.
  • More food available for purchase on Saturday & Sunday.

Registration/Check In: Friday @4 pm- 8:00 pm  OR Saturday @7:30 am- 8:45 am


Duration & Detailed Itinerary
Arrive Friday pm, stay and celebrate all day Saturday & Sunday. Leave at your leisure Sunday or book an extra night and leave Monday.

September 2023  Palmer River Fest Itinerary



Registration outside office: 5:00 – 8:00 pm

Equipment Rental Pick up @ Boathouse: 5:00 – 8:00 pm

Merch Booth 5:30-8:00pm



Registration @ office: 7:30 -8:30 am 

Equipment Pick Up: 7:30-8:30 am

Walk on Rentals: 9:30 am – 10

Breakfast: 7:00 am & onward

AM Clinics: Canoe – 9:15 – 11:30

                     Kayak – 9:30 – 11:45

    Hiking -10:00 am – 2:00 pm

Lunch: 12:00 – 1:15 pm

PM Clinics: Canoe – 1:15 – 3:30 pm

                     Kayak – 1:30 – 3:45 pm

**Inter-Adv clinics load boats on trailer**

Dinner: 4:30 – 6:00 pm

Merch Booth/Raffle tix: 4:00 – 6:00 pm

River Regatta: 5:00 – 6:00 pm

Raffle @ Stage: 6:15 – 7:00 pm

Music @ Stage: 7:30 – 11:30 pm

Quiet Hours: 12:00 am




  • Paddler – $290 (includes 4 clinics, tent camping Friday and Saturday nights, music admission and Saturday lunch voucher)
  • Kids Paddling – $220 (Rentals included, one Saturday lunch voucher and camping for Friday and Saturday nights, music admission) (Ages 8-11)
  • Youth Paddler – $250 (Rentals included, one Saturday lunch voucher and camping for Friday and Saturday nights, music admission) (Ages 11-14)
  • Packrafter – $250 (Includes 1 day of instruction on Saturday OR Sunday, rentals, camping for Friday and Saturday nights, music admission)
  • Hiker – $195 (Includes 2 guided 4hr hikes, camping for Friday and Saturday nights, music admission)
  • Boats – $95/weekend (helmet, paddle, PFD and skirt included)
  • Gear Pieces – $14/item/weekend (helmet, paddle, PFD or skirt)
  • Non Participating Tent Campers  – $60/weekend includes tent camping Friday & Saturday and access to events and vendors
  • Pre Order some Meals
      • *Remember if you are a registered paddler, Saturday Lunch is already included in your package.
    • Pre purchase Saturday Lunch – $13
    • Pre purchase Saturday Dinner  – $18
    • Pre purchase Sunday Lunch -$13
  • Meals for Cash Purchase on Site: Saturday Breakfast, Saturday Dinner, Sunday Breakfast, Sunday Lunch!

How to Book

  • Select the ‘Book Now’ button 
  • Select a level to register for:
    • Beginner – you have flat water experience or you may have even been in whitewater a few times but you do not have any formal instruction in this discipline (tandem canoe, solo canoe or kayak) or you are brand new with no experience
    • Intermediate –  you have had formal instruction in the last 5 years and you paddle 15+ days/year
    • Advanced- you have had multiple formal instruction opportunities and paddle more than 15 +days/year.
  • Select a discipline:
    • Tandem Whitewater Canoe – you will be in a boat with another participant 
    • Solo  Whitewater Canoe – you are alone in solo canoe 
    • Whitewater Kayaking – you are alone in a whitewater kayak 
  • Select the rental package you require
    •  Rental Package $95/weekend –  whitewater boat, helmet, paddle pfd and skirt (when applicable) 
    • Individual gear piece $14/item/weekend
  • If the course you’re looking for isn’t displayed call the office to be put on a waitlist!

Note: To maximize the clinic learning experience, participants will register for one level (Intro, Intermediate or Advanced) and one discipline (Tandem Canoe, Solo Canoe or Kayak) and will progress through the clinics with the same instructor and group all weekend (subject to Saturday morning switches based on goals, experience and skills).  _____________________________________________________

What’s different this year?

  • The Gear Swap! We’re selling off used gear and encourage everyone to bring their used gear to sell/barter/trade as well!
  • New musicians! We’ve got Ian Pattison on Banjo Saturday Midday and Paul Mingay to open the Saturday evening concert. You won’t want to miss their performances!
  • The Regatta! Our first annual regatta last fall Palmer Fest was such a hit, we’re bringing it back! Check out the teaser video here for what to expect

This weekend was made possible with the help of the Government of Ontario and Festival and Events Ontario.  You can find more information about other amazing festivals and events by clicking here!

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Call to book! A booking fee applies when you book online.