PADDLEBOARD RACE MAKES A SPLASH ON THE CHATTAHOOCHEE RIVER
Head to the Chattahoochee River at Morgan Falls Overlook Park on July 26 for one of the biggest paddleboard races in the Southeast. Open to all ages and ability levels, Stand Up for the Hooch features a 2-mile recreational loop that’s perfect for beginners and first-timers, and a 6-mile stretch for advanced paddlers along a flat, gentle course. Children (ages 6-12) can get their feet wet in a free 500-yard race, while family and friends cheer them on from the sidelines.
“Paddleboarding has blown up around the country but even more so in the Southeast because we have so many lakes and rivers that make paddling accessible,” says John Sloan, race director and general manager who co-owns High Country Outfitters, which hosts the event and an after-party with an awards ceremony and lunch at the Buckhead store. For the first time this year, the longer course includes surfski, kayak, canoe and outrigger canoe, too.
A SUP enthusiast who launched both the race and a seasonal outpost for rentals, Sloan anticipates 200 to 250 paddlers and 150 spectators at this year’s event, co-sponsored by SweetWater Brewing Co., Patagonia and YOLO, with proceeds benefiting the city of Sandy Springs’ charity of choice. “I would say 70% are out there to have fun. We have some unbelievable athletes going for the gold with fast paddlers doing 10-minute miles, but most people are simply cruising.”
STAND UP FOR THE HOOCH
July 26, 7 a.m.-1 p.m.
$45-$65 race fee, free kids race
200 Morgan Falls Road
Sandy Springs 30350
Contributing Writer, Simply Buckhead; journalist and graphic designer