Thursday, July 5, 2012

Pedaling, paddling, Pottstown

Some things I learned last Saturday:
-- Paddling a kayak can be more difficult than it appears. Or, I'm just not coordinated.
-- The village of Douglassville, now a massive-area mailing address, was founded by an English Quaker George Douglass whose home in the 18th century is the mansion under restoration I pass every day on my bike ride to work.
-- George Washington stopped twice at the White Horse Inn in Morlatton Village for a meal or a drink. He didn't sleep there.
-- Bause-Landry Catering makes the best boxed lunch. (I already knew that; it was just re-learned.)
I learned these things while participating on the Pedal-Paddle event sponsored by the Schuylkill River Heritage Area. I also learned about some planned events the SRHA is working on, including a cycle and cemeteries tour for the Civil War 150th anniversary.
The Pedal-Paddle started with gathering at the Heritage Area headquarters at Riverfront Park to bike 4.5 miles on the Schuylkill River Trail to Morlatton Village. At the village, a guide from the Historic Preservation Trust of Berks County conducted a tour of the Mouns Jones House, White House Tavern, former Covered Bridge Keeper's House and an explanation of the Douglass mansion, though it was not open due to ongoing renovation.
Then, we biked to Ganshahawny Park where a boxed lunch was served, kayaking instructions were given, and we set out on the river to paddle back to Pottstown.
The cost of the day's events were $25 and included use of a Bike Pottstown yellow bike, lunch, kayaks provided by Kelly's Canoes and Kayaks -- and lots of free and useful information.
Special thanks to Chris from Kelly's who paddled alongside in an attempt to convince me I was not as woeful a kayaker as my wandering route indicated.
Calm and confidence is key to success in everything. I learned that, too.

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