For Immediate Release
Attention News & Assignment Editors
May 4, Toronto, ON – Heavy rainfall, forecasted to amount to as much as 70 mm by Saturday, has prompted organizers to cancel the 24th Annual Manulife Paddle the Don scheduled for Sunday May 7, 2017. Toronto and Region Conservation, (TRCA), cited concerns over public safety as the reason for the cancellation of the event, which raises both awareness and funds to support environmental stewardship across the GTA. This is the first time this event – a favourite for paddling enthusiasts of all ages, has been cancelled.
“Our primary concern is the safety of participants in the event,” Arlen Leeming, Manager, Don & Highland Watersheds, TRCA, said. “With the amount of rain expected to hit our region in the next 48 -72 hours, we felt the risk for participants was too great. We are disappointed we’ve had to take this step, but are confident this is the correct course of action as public safety is our number one focus. Now we will look forward to the 2018 running of Manulife Paddle the Don.”
The event draws eager paddlers who travel down the river in canoes and kayaks. This once-a-year adventure was expected to attract more than 350 boats and 700 participants, whose generosity helps support the protection and ongoing conservation of the Don River watershed.
To date, more than $600,000 has been raised in support of environmental education programming, conservation efforts and public awareness, ultimately benefiting the people who live, work and visit the Don River watershed.