Wednesday, May 31, 2017

In the Books: Clay City Riverfest

We did it.
The inaugural Clay City Riverfest went off mostly without a hitch.  Search and Rescue might disagree, but overall it was a raging success. 
There was a team involved in planning and putting the event on.  I didn’t do it all by myself as has been widely reported.  All efforts to rename Highway 15 to Chris Chaney Boulevard should cease immediately.  I’ll abide the statute in the middle of town, but let’s not get crazy.
We estimate 200-300 people came and went during the day.  Mike’s Hike and Bike had 19 boat rentals.  We think at least that many brought their own boats.  There were fifteen vendors/organizations signed up and most came.
The live music was phenomenal.  All-in-all it was a great time.

Josh Nolan performing at Riverfest

The only major flaw in the plan was the boat accesses—which were the central focus of the whole party—were not complete.  We knew that was a possibility.  The river and weather in May in Kentucky is fickle.  The community’s relationship with the river is characterized by the dual reality of life giving water source and flood damaging force of nature.
Thankfully the river was not flooded; just high, muddy, fast, and cold.
We tried to warn folks that taking small kids or going out with no experience wasn’t a good idea.  For the most part people heeded that advice.  And no one got hurt!  Let me lay that out.  Well, a friend of ours busted her nose and had a panicky moment underwater, but otherwise of the Riverfest Nine who flipped at the 1 mile mark no one was injured.
There will be a next year.  I’ve already been approached by the new tourism board in Clay City and been assured that there will be a budget for next year.  Many, many people asked if it would be held again next year.  So many people expressed their pleasure and enjoyment of the day.  It was a great time, even for those of us who worked hard to put it on.
As big as that event was we had a pretty full weekend that was more than just Riverfest.  Mandy and I did some trail work in Bald Rock on Sunday and then paddled the Clay City Loop to put up the signs for Riverfest.  I’m blanking on what we did on Saturday but it seems like there was quite a bit going on.
Along Rock Rock Trail

Shackle Rod Trail

Shackle Rod Trail
I took yesterday off from work to mentally recuperate from the weekend.  Otherwise I don’t think I would have been much use in the office.  Today I’m still lagging (hence the quick post), but I definitely feel clearer of head now.  I rode the Bald Rock loop and headed out to also do the Big Sinking loop only to discover that the Big ain't sunk right now.  That loop involves a lot of dry creekbed riding and with all the recent rains even the section above the creek banks were probably sloppy.  Discretion being the better part of valor I turned and rode back to the car.  Soon.
Bald Rock Fork

Bald Rock Fork

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