Light up the night at this year’s Lock & Paddle at the Peterborough Lift Lock

August 24th evening event features a lighted paddlecraft parade, lighted night-time lockage, free overnight camping, and more

For the first time, this year's Lock and Paddle at the Peterborough Lift Lock on August 24, 2019 will be an evening event featuring a judged lighted paddelcraft parade followed by lighted night-time lockage. Free overnight camping at the Lift Lock will also be available for the first 150 registrants. (Photo: Parks Canada)
For the first time, this year's Lock and Paddle at the Peterborough Lift Lock on August 24, 2019 will be an evening event featuring a judged lighted paddelcraft parade followed by lighted night-time lockage. Free overnight camping at the Lift Lock will also be available for the first 150 registrants. (Photo: Parks Canada)

Lock & Paddle is back for its fourth year on Saturday, August 24th beginning at 5 p.m. at the Peterborough Lift Lock (353 Hunter St. E., Peterborough).

Once again this year, organizers are mixing things up. Last year’s event, which took place on a June afternoon, tried to get as many paddlers as possible through the Peterborough Lift Lock.

This year, the evening event will feature two new twists: “Light up the Night” — a colourful lighted paddlecraft parade followed by lighted night-time lockage — and, for the first time ever, free overnight camping by the Lift Lock for the first 150 registrants.

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The annual event is presented by the Peterborough Lift Lock National Historic Site of Canada (Parks Canada) in co-operation with The Canadian Canoe Museum.

“This year we are opening up the site to encourage a festival feel by welcoming local vendors and entertainment as we host hundreds of paddlers and spectators,” Parks Canada states in a media release.

“In order to better grow this spectacular event and give everyone a chance to participate, the format will change to make the event more inclusive, giving everyone the chance to lock-through.”

Paddlers are encouraged to decorate their vessels with glow sticks, lights, reflectors, or anything that can light up the night (other than open flame). At 6 p.m. on the Saturday of the event, a lighted paddle parade will begin, where judges will award prizes for the best decorated vessels.

VIDEO: Highlights of Lock and Paddle 2018

Following the paddle parade, the lighted vessels will be lifted during the night almost 20 metres into the Peterborough Lift Lock — the first time in over 60 years this has taken place. After paddlers exist the Lift Lock, a campfire will be waiting with musical acts and other activities.

To participate in Lock & Paddle, paddlers must register and wear their coloured wristband along with a PFD. This year, advance registration is available by downloading a registration package at www.pc.gc.ca/en/lhn-nhs/on/trentsevern/activ/eclusez-pagayez-lock-paddle that you can complete, and then email or deliver in advance or on the day of the event.

You can also register for free overnight camping when registering (first 150 registrants only).

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Onsite registration will be available at the Peterborough Lift Lock Visitor Centre grounds starting at 5 p.m. on August 24th. All participants (including those who have already registered) are required to visit the registration tent to receive their vessel number and coloured wristband. All registered participants will also receive a commemorative Lock & Paddle bracelet.

Parking

Here are locations where you can park that are within walking (and paddling) distance to the Peterborough Lift Lock:

  • Trent-Severn Waterway Headquarters – 2155 Ashburnham Drive, Peterborough
  • Eastgate Memorial Park – 2150 Ashburnham Drive, Peterborough
  • Beavermead Campground – 2011 Ashburnham Drive, Peterborough
  • Rogers Cove – 131 Maria Street, Peterborough
At last year's Lock and Paddle on June 24, 2019, the event tried to get as many paddlers as possible through the Peterborough Lift Lock in a single afternoon. This year's event takes place in the evening and organizers are encouraging participating paddlers to light up and decorate their canoes and kayaks.  (Photo: Parks Canada)
At last year’s Lock and Paddle on June 24, 2019, the event tried to get as many paddlers as possible through the Peterborough Lift Lock in a single afternoon. This year’s event takes place in the evening and organizers are encouraging participating paddlers to light up and decorate their canoes and kayaks. (Photo: Parks Canada)

Paddling to the Peterborough Lift Lock

Here are put-in locations if you plan to paddle to the Peterborough Lift Lock. Note that if you are going through Lock 20 – Ashburhnam, you need to allow an extra 45 to 60 minutes to transfer and paddle to the Peterborough Lift Lock.

  • Beavermead Campground (2011 Ashburnham Dr.) – 5-minute paddle to Lock 20, 45-60 minutes to transfer and paddle to Peterborough Lift Lock
  • Rogers Cove (131 Maria St.) – 5-minute paddle to Lock 20, 45-60 minutes to transfer and paddle to Peterborough Lift Lock
  • Millennium Park (130 King St.) – 20-minute paddle to Lock 20, 45-60 minutes to transfer and paddle to Peterborough Lift Lock
  • Del Crary Park (100 George St.) – 35-minute paddle to Lock 20, 45-60 minutes to transfer and paddle to Peterborough Lift Lock
  • Warsaw Swing Bridge (Parkhill Rd, E. and Canal Rd.) – 20-minute paddle to Peterborough Lift Lock
  • McFarlane Bridge (McFarlane St. & Ashburnham Dr.) – 10-minute paddle to Peterborough Lift Lock
  • Trent-Severn Waterway Headquarters (2155 Ashburnham Dr.) – 5-minute portage to launch at the top and west side of Lock 20, 20-minute paddle to Peterborough Lift Lock.

All participating paddlers need the following gear: a PFD (paddlers must wear it), a sound signalling device, a buoyant heaving line, and a bailer for each boat. This is a rain or shine event, so also bring an umbrella or raincoat if rain is in the forecast.

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Boat and gear rentals

If you want to rent a boat or gear, you can get it at one of the following local rental suppliers:

  • Pedal and Paddle (Millennium Park at the Silver Bean, 100 King St., Peterborough)
  • Wild Rock Outfitters (169 Charlotte Street, Peterborough)
  • Adventure Outfitters (1828 8th Line, Lakefield)
  • Beavermead Campground (2011 Ashburnham Drive, Peterborough)
  • Cottage Toys (180 Charlotte St., Peterborough; 96 Clementi St. Lakefield)

Important notes

  • You must be wearing your PFD and your coloured registration wristband to enter the Lift Lock chambers.
  • For safety reasons, stand-up paddle boards will not be permitted at this event.
  • No alcohol is permitted at this event.
  • By participating in this event, all paddlers agree to be photographed and filmed.

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