“Would you like to win a canoe?”
That was a common question we asked Northern Forest Canoe Trail members and friends this summer. Thanks to donations from Lincoln Canoe and Kayak, Northstar Canoes and Wenonah Canoe, we had three brand new boats to give away.
Nearly 2,000 tickets later, three winners were drawn and more than $9,400 raised for our programs.
Nancy LaBombard of Saranac Lake, New York won the Lincoln which was to be custom made once the winner was drawn. While the raffle was for a Concord canoe with the option to pay to upgrade to a Kevlar model, Nancy upgraded instead to a Quoddy Light kayak. “I love it!” she shared with us after finally getting her kayak recently and going for a test paddle.
Lincoln owner Marc Bourgoin has been a friend of the Northern Forest Canoe Trail for years. They moved their shop from Freeport, Maine to Amesbury, Massachusetts last fall and are already busy filling orders for 2016. Checkout their canoes and kayaks at www.paddlelincoln.com.
We created the word “cownoe” this year (seriously, do a Google search) thanks to the genius of Northern Forest Canoe Trail founder Rob Center. He teamed up his pals at Wenonah Canoe with Sparky Potter, owner of Wood & Wood Sign Systems, to make a one-of-a-kind Champlain model with black and white cow graphics.
Karrie and Walter gained popularity last summer as they carried the Cownoe on top of their vehicles attending events hither and yon. Turns out that driving through towns with a Holstein-like canoe on your truck makes people smile.
We’re so thrilled that Joe Geronimo of Endwell, New York won the Wenonah Cownoe because he bought, like, a gazillon tickets. We seriously stirred the raffle box on drawing day but Joe’s determination paid off. On his blog at adirondackjoe.wordpress.com he shares, “my sons and I were on the way home from a four day trip to Vermont when I received the call. I briefly chatted with Sandy and after we hung up the boys and I began to cheer out loud in the car, we were ecstatic as I have never won a raffle before.”
Wenonah Canoe has been a strong and consistent supporter of the canoe trail since its beginning. We thank the many years of support and attention owner Mike Cichanowski has provided. Be sure to visit www.wenonah.com.
And finally we raffled a Northwind canoe made by Northstar Canoes. Rachel Schneider of Beverly, Massachusetts won and plans to drive to Vermont this weekend to collect her prize. She’s determined to have it by Columbus Day Weekend sharing, “I’m eager to get the boat on the water over the long weekend!”
Northstar is a new company but its owner is a legend. After a hiatus upon selling Bell Canoe Works in 2006, boat maker Ted Bell re-emerged in 2014 with his new line at Northstar Canoes. Watch Canoe & Kayak Magazine’s interview of Bell at 9 Good Things That Happened at Canoecopia and enjoy browsing at northstarcanoes.com.
We thank everyone who participated by purchasing raffle tickets. Money raised benefits both our work to maintain the Northern Forest Canoe Trail and to get more people paddling its lakes and rivers. Stay tuned for future canoe raffles as we continue to encourage paddlers young and old, yet to be and old hat, to experience canoeing and kayaking in the Northern Forest Region.