As the state of Maryland enters Phase 2 of its COVID-19 recovery plan and as cases trend downward state-wide, the Sultana Education Foundation (SEF) is announcing a revised schedule of kayak trips to be enjoyed by the general public this summer on some of Kent County’s most scenic waterways. These programs, known as Public Paddles, feature guided tours of remote tributaries that are lightly developed and contain pristine wetlands full of plant and animal life. Each Public Paddle follows a specific theme highlighting habitats and organisms found at that particular launch site.

“We are thrilled to be able to provide in-person, water-based programming to the general public this summer,” said SEF’s Director of Paddling Programs, Brad Hirsh. “We’ve scheduled these paddles on Tuesday and Thursday mornings to avoid crowds, and we’ve also limited the number of participants to eight paddlers to make social distancing as easy as possible. Otherwise, once we’re on the water, these trips will be just like any other Public Paddles the Foundation has conducted in previous years.”

Between July 7th and August 20th, SEF is conducting fourteen separate paddles that are filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Participants will have an opportunity to visit a blue heron rookery on the upper Sassafras River, observe bald eagle nests at Turner’s Creek, explore the salt marshes of Eastern Neck Island, investigate remnants of Native American communities at Stillpond Creek, view the blooming American lotus flowers of the lower Sassafras, and navigate the headwaters of the mighty Chester River. Each paddle takes place from 9:00 – 11:30 am. Participants are encouraged to bring their own lifejackets, and SEF provides the kayaks, paddles, and guides. The cost is $30 per person, with a minimum age requirement of twelve years old.

“We’re extremely excited to get people back on the water to explore some of the special places that make this area so unique,” stated SEF’s Vice President Chris Cerino. “After being cooped up inside for much of the spring, these paddles are a welcome addition to SEF’s summer itinerary!”

To see the complete schedule of 2020 Summer Public Paddles, or to register for a trip, visit www.sultanaeducation.org.