PIQUA – Students, faculty, staff and friends of Edison State Community College came together for a two-hour educational kayak trip down the Great Miami River during the third annual Float, Learn and Lunch on Sept. 27.
The event, which was organized by the Edison State Student Senate, brought together nearly 20 participants who embarked on the Miami River at East Lockington Road to experience beautiful weather and wildlife along the way.
“We were treated to a beautiful morning, which we spent kayaking with our fellow student, faculty and staff friends,” Edison State Student Senate President Matthew Studebaker said. “The gorgeous weather, a calm river and an excellent participant turnout have once again made this event a tremendous success.”
New this year, participants boarded Edison State kayaks, which were purchased using funds raised during Down the River, Down a Beer Festival and in partnership with the City of Piqua’s River Stewards Program and Protecting Our Water-Ways.
“I’m excited to say that the third annual Float, Learn and Lunch allowed us to take the new Edison State kayaks out on the Great Miami River for the first time,” Studebaker said.
“Opportunities like Float, Learn and Lunch allow students, staff and faculty to engage with one another outside of the classroom. These events are designed to entertain, educate, foster a sense of community and facilitate the building of friendships. As the Edison State Student Senate continues to expand their events calendar, it is our hope that more and more people get involved in campus life.”
During the float, information on water cleanliness was provided. Wildlife and environmental characteristics also were observed and discussed. The float ended at Roadside Park, where participants were treated to lunch.
Plans to get more people out exploring the river are already in the works.
“The Great Miami River is an amazing resource in our area, yet remains sadly underutilized,” Studebaker said. “In an effort to expand awareness of this beautiful waterway, the Edison State Student Senate has recently committed to making this a biannual event, to be held every fall and spring semester. Adventurers will continue to receive a free event shirt and be treated to lunch following their kayaking experience.”
The Student Senate thanked the following individuals and organizations for their contribution to the event: Down a River, Down a Beer for its donation, which purchased the kayaking equipment; Doreen Larson and her husband, Len, for assisting with transportation and for delivering lunches; Tom Burelison, Nicholas Rudy, Ryan Whitney and Harold Hitchcock from the Edison State maintenance team for transporting the equipment to/from the drop points; and Jeff Lange from Protecting Our Water-Ways for serving as a guide and local river conservation expert.
For information on upcoming Float, Learn and Lunch events, email firstname.lastname@example.org.