RIDGWAY - The second annual Ridgway River Festival brings watershed education, river activities, live music, and fun for the whole family to Rollans Park this Saturday, June 27. Activities include a whitewater rodeo, down river race, the Junk of the Unc race and the Kid’s Eddy. Regional watershed information, local food vendors and a beverage tent will round out the day, which begins at 11 a.m. and goes until 9 p.m..
All interested participants are invited to begin the day with an educational site walk along the Uncompahgre River with Bill Coughlin of Western Stream Works. He will be discussing the history, geology and ecology of the river, as well as the Ridgway Uncompahgre Restoration Project. The presentation begins at 10 a.m.; meet on the west side of the pedestrian bridge in Rollans Park.
Live music will grace the festival stage all day long. Don’t miss the sweet sounds of Bruce Hayes, Fall Baby and Mountain Mystics Reggae Band. There will be tasty beverages from New Belgium Brewery and delicious food from Gypsy’s Crepe Cart as well as tamales and fresh gazpacho.
Kids and kids at heart will enjoy the Kid’s Eddy, featuring a face painting tent, arts and crafts table and goodies from the sun oven. Voyager youth program will hold duck races while young artists can take part in an Andy Goldsworthy art station and gallery. Local youth will be operating Alex’s lemonade stand, serving icy cold drinks to benefit pediatric cancer research.
Stop by the Watershed Education tent to learn about initiatives to protect and restore local waterways, and visit the silent auction (under the same tent) to benefit service projects along the Uncompahgre River corridor.
A registration table will be set up for the river events. There, participants can also sign up to win two, same-day raft trips down the Uncompahgre starting at 3 p.m., sponsored by R.I.G.S. Fly Shop.
At noon the Down River Race will commence, traveling approximately three miles from Rollans Park to Dallas Creek at Ridgway State Park. This is a class 2+ section of river, providing fun for the whole family. The White Water Rodeo starts at 1:30 p.m., no doubt bringing with it many surprises. The competition will be held in one of two drops below the Ridgway bridge at Rollans Park.
Beginning at 2:30 p.m., the Junk of the Unc race, (formerly titled Riff Raff Race) will bring homemade watercrafts and lots of laughter to the river. The race ends .5 miles downstream from Rollans Park, just south of the railroad bridge. For specific rules and regulations on all river events, call 626-5134 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
A few things to keep in mind: Children should not be left unattended, particularly next to the river, which can be swift and dangerous. Dogs must be leashed and accompanied by their owners at all times. All waste produced by the festival will be disposed of at a zero-waste station. Please note the signage and put waste in its proper place.
The Ridgway River Festival is a fundraiser for the nonprofit Mosaic Community Project, which supports, protects and educates about the Uncompahgre River watershed.
For more information, visit the official Ridgway River Festival website at HYPERLINK "http://www.ridgwayriverfestival.org" www.ridgwayriverfestival.org