SARANAC LAKE - It started in August 2010 with a follow-up a year later in 2011, but the Mayor's Cup Paddle Race took 2012 off to re-think the event and now a scaled-down, family-friendly version is back this July 4, aimed towards recreational and novice paddlers.
The race will begin and end at Riverside Park, going out and around a Lake Flower buoy and back, with three racing categories: Single person kayaks; Canoes with an unlimited number of paddlers and a "Rub-a-Dub" division for "unusual" floating vessels and costumes.
The first finisher will have their name added to "The Mayor's Cup," with medals going to the first three finishers in each category and special awards for best costume and team spirit. Vermontville's Rick Gonyea-who carved wood spirit walking stick trophies for the recent Saranac Lake 6er event-is carving a special paddle for the winner as well.
Race time is 11 a.m. Thursday with registration starting at 10:30 a.m. in Riverside Park.
Mayor Clyde Rabideau is encouraging family participation, saying, "This just-for-fun race is a great way for a family to start its July 4th celebration and the events throughout the afternoon in Saranac Lake will make it even nicer."
Throughout the day in Riverside Park, the Women's Civic Chamber is once again holding an old fashioned Fourth of July picnic, from 11 a.m. 5 p.m, featuring music throughout the day, face-painting, old-time games, fun and food sponsored by local civic groups.
The Saranac Lake Area Chamber of Commerce is also hosting a free outdoor concert in Riverside Park from 7 p.m. until dusk with Village-sponsored fireworks kicking-off just past 9 p.m.