Paddle challenge Saturday supports local families impacted by cancer

 

‘Monster & Sea’ 24-hour paddle challenge starts at 8 a.m.

THE ‘Monster & Sea’ 24-hour paddle challenge is coming to Port Dover this Saturday (April 13) starting at 8 a.m. at the Walker Street beach.
Six local paddlers — Tyler Backus of Turkey Point, Doug Gatward of Waterford, Julie Postill of Norfolk, Jessica Rando of Port Credit, Sarah Connolly and Lisa Beaudoin of Niagara area — will be paddling 24 hours in a relay format to raise funds for local families impacted by cancer.

Event coordinator Julie Postill says “this is a grassroots event to raise funds for local families impacted by cancer.”
“All funds collected go directly to families in need, no red tape, no middle man. Just a small way for our community to give back and help break the chaos for a family impacted by this devastating disease.”
The team of six will paddle in a relay format over the 24 hour period. It breaks down into three pairs of two that rotate on the hour. In some cases a pair may have a double shift since the whole team is on the water at 8 a.m., 11 p.m. and 7 a.m.
When asked why choose April, Ms. Postill says “the event takes place in 40 communities across North America. All teams paddle on the same day and in the same format. If the weather risks our safety then the team will stop. Last year we had an ice storm so we paddled until 6 p.m. then came up with other physical activities for the remaining shifts.”


Photo above: Participants at a previous Monster & Sea paddle challenge. Organizers invite the public to the Walker Street beach for the kick-off at 8 a.m. this Saturday and throughout the day and night until the completion Sunday morning at 8 a.m.


The team is comprised of experienced paddlers and all utilize safety gear including life jackets, leashes, dry suits, wetsuits and lights for overnight paddling. “Safety is always a factor and something we take seriously,” she said.
Ms. Postill says everyone on the team has spent many days in Port Dover during the summer “due to our love of paddling and water.”
Ms. Postill and Ms. Rando have been on the same team since the inception and it will be their fourth year participating.
After the event, the team discusses potential recipients in order to provide envelopes to the families. “It all depends on how much money is raised during the event. So far two families have been identified as needing assistance, however, the team has yet to discuss since we are still in the raising funds period,” said Ms. Postill.
The team has raised over $20,000 helping 20 families impacted by cancer since its inaugural event.
“The public can help by cheering us on at the beach, making a cash donation at the beach hut, donate through our GoFundMe page or sharing our story through the community.”
Organizers are also looking for a couple of volunteers to help man the Walker Street beach hut for an hour or so.
More information on the day’s event and how to donate is available at facebook.com/MS24PortDover/

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