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The_sandlapper

International Whitewater Championships

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Columbia (along with Charlotte) has been selected to play host to a the international whitewater event. In 2007 the "Junior Wildwater World Championships" will be held on the Saluda River. Charlotte is expected to hold the sprint events while Cola will be holding the longer traditional races. In 2005 the event was held in Mezzana, Italy.

For more info: Whitewater event

This is good news talk about great exposure of QOL throughout the area. It's these types of events that Columbia should be playing host of, to get the word out there that it's more than just what people "think" they know. It's a positive and a great selling point for the area to use when attracting and keeping the "creative class". Not many cities in this country can say they have world class whitewater kayaking venues minutes from downtown. I think this will tie in nicely with all the other positive enegy flowing in the area at present. Along with the announcement that the research campus now may stretch to the river maybe Columbia should re-think its motto to the "riverbank city". ;)

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Nice! That's really cool news. I can't wait to hear more about this one. I'd love to go check that out when rolls around. I've done a little 'yaking myself, but I stay away from the whitewater! :)

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I didn't know that those rapids were actually used for practice in the 1996 Olympic games in Atlanta. Cool.

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Here's the official announcement for this event.

Pertinent excerpt:

...having an international event like this could mark Columbia's rivers as a destination for wildwater lovers..."Columbia is putting themselves in a great position on a national level," [John Pinyerd, USA Canoe/Kayak wildwater team chairman] said. "This could set it up as a venue for a future event ... and put Columbia on the map as a river that's good for whitewater paddling and good for training."

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The races start just above the Zoo and will finish at the Gervais Street bridge. I bet you'll have a good view of the finish line from either the bridge or the nearby greenway.

Here is the detailed schedule from the JWWC website:

http://www.jwwc2007.com/program.html

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I tubed that very route with a group of people from work Saturday. The Saluda River is absolutely gorgeous back there. It was amazing to be surrounded by so much nature in the middle of a 703,000 metro next to downtown.

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