Sunday morning canoe/kayak trip used to be exclusively canoeing,
but in 2001, due to low attendance and an odd number of attendees,
kayaking made the most sense. Since then, it has been the prefered
method of floating down Sugar Creek. Once an ambitious 15 mile
journey, the trip will most likely be a modest 4 miles in the
future. This allows for a comfortable 2 hour float through Turkey
Run State Park with a cooler full of High Life and the sun *hopefully*
reflecting off our backs.
canoe trip down Sugar Creek has always been a main event at Serb
Fest. We have the vintage photos to prove it! For those of us
only familiar with modern day Turkey Run, the trip down Sugar
Creek certainly hasn't always been the "beer float"
it is today. For many years, the 15 mile canoe trip was a given.
In fact, everyone looked foward to the challenge! A bag lunch
was packed early in the morning consisting of a sandwich, fruit,
& chips. It was eaten at the half way point of the trip or
when the collective group was tired enough to stop for a break.
Upon arriving at "Turkey Run Canoe Trips", the group
would split into pairs for the trip. This never posed a problem
until 1999 when the pairing of Dan F & Nutz resulted in what
arguably was Dan's 4th near-death experience of the weekend. (Rumor
has it Nutz theatened to kill him with the oar for not paddling
enough). This was the beginning of the end for the traditional
15 mile canoe trip. The following year again was a little rough
for the group due to poor pairing of talent. This was particularly
the case for Olaf & Scott. The experience was less than delightful.
2001, due to an odd number of attendees, Scott, Krangis, &
CR opted to make the first ever 15 mile kayak trip. The experience
was considerably easier, despite the cold and cloudy weather.
The following year, due to weather conditions and low water levels,
the group was forced to settle for the first ever 4 mile trip.
While this left some feeling unsatisfied, most were more than
happy to accept the abbreviated trip. In 2003, due to the persuasion
of an overzealous Jovan, one last attempt was made to make the
full 15 mile trip. For the first time, beer was brought to ease
the pain of the trip. The final decision to do away with this
distance was made when the beer ran dry after mile 2. 2004 marked
the first official "Beer Float". This consisted of a
4 mile float with the help of the not-so-strong current of Sugar
Creek. Again though, beer ran dry by the end of mile 2. More adjustments
were needed to be made. Because of the rule at Turkey Run Canoe
Trips which states that alcohol is permitted, at a count of 2
per person, the real challenge of the kayak trip at that point
was to see just how many beers we could slide past the checkpoint
before boarding the old school bus. 2005 was slightly more successful.
This is the year the the Serbian Flag also made the journey down
Sugar Creek. While we once again ran dry, we were fairly satisfied.
Rumor has it the the competetor, Sugar Valley Canoe trips has
a much less stringant rule regarding alcohol. This may be worthy
of trying in 2006!