Area Group To Paddle Waterways

Morgantown Dominion Post
2 November 2015
By Ann Kennell

A group of more than 100 people in the Morgantown area enjoys putting a kayak or canoe on the water and paddling around.

Mary Wimmer is one of them.

Wimmer is starting a new flatwater paddling group — Morgantown Area Paddlers (MAP). It’s open to anyone, regardless of experience.

“I thought that having a loosely organized paddling group would be a start,” Wimmer said.

Wimmer has been paddling on area waterways with other paddling enthusiasts for the past 20 years. She decided to take those 70-plus people and form the group, which now has grown to more than 100 people.

“It’s a safe and relaxing activity to do outside and be social with people who enjoy the same things,” Wimmer said.

That’s what MAP wants to do — create a fun and safe group for experienced paddlers and newcomers, get the MAP name out there for visitors to know, maintain and upkeep launch sites, and also fundraise for a new kayak/canoe launch.

The launch will be on the Monongahela River at the Van Voorhis Trailhead parking lot. MAP plans to have the launch open next spring.

Gwen Jones is a newcomer to flatwater paddling.

“I've thought about it for a long time and Mary had an extra boat she let me use to try it out and I loved it,” Jones said, Jones previously spent time white-water rafting, but wanted to be able to do something more relaxed where she could enjoy the scenic views and bird watch.

“The thing that sold me on paddling was being able to try it out and make sure I liked it,” Jones said. “Now, I’m completely sold.”

For more information about MAP, visit the group’s Facebook page or email Wimmer at