Metroparks of the Toledo Area hosted an Outdoor Adventure Expo at Side Cut Metropark in Maumee, May 31, where they unveiled new archery and kayaking programs available this summer.
“Attendance at this event has been estimated at 2,000 based on industry standards of car counters in the parking lot,” said program production specialist Lauren McCafferty. “Our most popular programs were definitely the archery and the kayaks, which is good, because those are the two new programs we set out to promote. We’ve got a lot of good feedback and we’re really excited to turn it into an annual event.”
“This actually began as an idea to showcase our new archery and kayaking programs for this summer, but the response from vendors tells us that there is really a demand for an event like this,” said Scott Carpenter, director of public relations.
This is the first year the Metroparks have hosted an event focused on outdoor recreation. Bass Pro Shops, a major sponsor of the event, set up a campsite in the Silver Lake Area to advertise camping gear. Information was also available about the Bowling Green State University Outdoors Program, University of Toledo Office of Recreation, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Division of Wildlife, Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts of America, the Toledo River Gang and many others.
In addition, “try it” stations were available for canoeing, kayaking and archery. None of the equipment is available to rent for individual use at this time, however the Metroparks are developing a series of public programs for all ages.
“We just bought about 20 kayaks and we’re trying to figure out the best way to utilize those,” said McCafferty. “There are a lot of really nice lakes at the Metroparks, and there have been paddling programs available at some of them for years, but we hope this new equipment will provide a new way for people to explore the Maumee River.”
Archery will be available only at Side Cut Metropark this summer. McCafferty said the safety of all participants is of the utmost concern, and that Metroparks employees and volunteers had been working with the rangers and the division of wildlife for training as basic archery instructors.
More information about these programs may be found by clicking on the “what to do” calendar at Metroparkstoledo.com.