Schedule is subject to change before the event.

Full Schedule

Friday, August 3

Flatwater Friday

9am - 5pm: Registration @ Parks Canada

10:30am - 4pm: Family Canoe Picnic @ Boat Launch

5:15 - 6:30pm: Canoe Races @ Boat Launch

8 - 10pm: Film Festival @ Museum (NLMCC)

Saturday, August 4

8am - 12pm: Last-Minute Registration @ Parks Canada

9am: Paddler Meeting @ Conibear Park

10am - 12pm: Morning Clinics & Youth Games @ Mountain Portage Rapids (MPR)

12:30pm: Opening Ceremony @ MPR

12:30 - 5pm: Competitions & Fun at the Playground @ MPR

5 - 6pm: Golf Course River Run @ MPR

9:30pm - 1am: Beach Party @ Anna’s Home Cooking

Sunday, August 5

10am - 12pm: Morning Clinics @ MPR

11am - 1pm: Giant Slalom Race & Hike to English Channel @ MPR

11am: Yoga on the Rocks @ MPR

12 - 5pm: Competitions & Fun at the Playground @ MPR

3 pm: Parks Canada Interpretive Presentation @ MPR

7 pm: Paddlefest Dinner @ Queen Elizabeth Campground

Monday, August 6

9am - 12pm: Pancake Breakfast @ Museum (NLMCC)

12pm: Edge King Competition & Group River Run @ Museum (NLMCC)

AUGUST 3 | Flatwater Friday

Flatwater Friday is a fun-filled day focused on canoeing and picnicking. There are views of the rapids, but all of the events are in flat water.

We start with a picnic lunch on an island on the far side of the river. We provide a few snacks, but participants need to bring their own lunch. Kids will often have epic mud wars and it is not unheard of for Parks Canada to start a fire and make bannock on a stick. There's also a kayak slalom race for more advanced participants to join while picnickers enjoy spectating. The picnic is followed up by the main event of the day; head-to-head canoe races in two-person and six-person teams. Teams are assembled on the spot or ahead of time.

In the evening, participants can sit back and enjoy a film festival featuring a river documentary.

AUGUST 4 | Saturday

Saturday takes place on the rocks at Mountain Portage rapids with events for every experience level and every type of craft that floats. This is the biggest day of Paddlefest with some of our most anticipated competitions, such as the international pool toy race and SUP jousting! Snacks and water are provided around a campfire, and the whole vibe is a fun beach party for all. Raft rides are available, and there are always fun activities to watch or join!

Join Parks Canada for a guided hike of the banks of the Slave River, or take to the skies with Northwestern Air for a scenic air tour of the rapids. And look forward to trying to hula and limbo at the beach-themed party that evening.

AUGUST 5 | Sunday

Sunday also takes place at the rocks of Mountain Portage Rapids. The day starts with the giant slalom down-river race for advanced paddlers and continues with a variety of events for all levels of paddlers.

In the evening enjoy some food at the paddler appreciation dinner with award presentations for those who excelled in events over the past few days.

AUGUST 6 | Monday

With Monday being the last day of Paddlefest, things are a lot more chill. The Northern Life Museum will offer participants a pancake breakfast in the morning.


The schedule is still under development, but you can expect a similar range of activities to previous years.


Schedule is not final and is subject to changes. Last updated Thursday, July 20.

Pre-Paddlefest (July 29th- August 4th)

Paddlefest (August 4th-7th)

Unless otherwise noted, participation included with Paddlefest registration. For water events, you must be registered as a paddler.

Flatwater Friday, August 4th  (Boat Launch, Arena)

  • 9-4: Last day for multi-day pre-event instructional clinics (*see above for dates and pricing)
  • 10:00 Initial registration and check-in at Parks Visitor Centre
  • 12:00 Family canoe picnic partnered with the FSPC and Wood Buffalo National Park (WBNP)
  • 10-5 Fat bike tours* operated and offered by Borealis Bike Tours (first-time offering)
  • 2:00 Exhibition Race: Olympic style slalom kayaking partnered with FSPC
  • 5:30 Canoe races partnered with Environment Natural Resources, Aurora College, and Smith's Landing First Nation
  • 6:30 Community feast with Slave River Coalition in the Arena.

Saturday, August 5th  (Conibear Park and Mountain Portage Rapids)

  • 8:00-10:00 Rusty Raven will be selling coffee. Roots and Ruminants (local organic farm) will be selling breakfast sandwiches at Conibear Park
  • 9:00 am Mandatory registered paddler safety meeting at Conibear Park
  • 9-12: Rolling in the river course from Aquabatics ($79/p)
  • 10:00-11:30 pm First-timers introduction to kayaking*, partnered with FSPC ($20/p)
  • 10-5 Fat bike tours* operated and offered by Borealis Bike Tours (first-time offering)
  • 10-12:00 pm: Introduction to SUPing with Conor Flynn and Ayden Dermenjian ($20/p)
  • 10:00-11:30 pm Youth kayak games partnered with FSPC (free)
  • 12:00 pm Opening ceremony with elder
  • 1:00-5:00 pm Spectator friendly events at mountain portage rapids (swim race, pool toy race, beach ball race, advanced rodeo, canoe races, SUP jousting, led beginner runs)
  • 1:00-4:30pm Raft ($20/p) and duo rides ($30) for spectators- sign up on-site
  • 5:00-6:00 pm led Beginner/Intermediate run to the Golf Course Restaurant
  • 5:00-9:00 pm- Dinner encouraged at local restaurants
  • 9 pm: Riverstock, live music put on by the Fort Smith Music Society in the Arena.

Sunday, August 6th  (Mountain Portage Rapids and Queen Elizabeth Campground)

  • 9-12: Intro to freestyle course from Aquabatics ($79/p)
  • 10-5 Fat bike tours* operated and offered by Borealis Bike Tours (first-time offering)
  • 111 am Morning Yoga
  • 10 am Guided hike to giant slalom event, partnered with WBNP
  • 11-5 Raft and Duo Rides, sign up on-site
  • 11-1 Parks Canada Programming
  • 12-2- Advanced giant slalom race partnered with FSPC
  • 1:30-2:30 Drop-in rolling clinic to troubleshoot your roll. Partnered with FSPC ($20/p)
  • 1-5 pm Spectator Friendly Events at Mountain Portage (Led beginner runs, beginner kayak races and rodeos, canoe rescue rodeo, Intermediate boater cross and rodeo, SUP races, youth kayak races, rolling competitions)
  • 7:30 pm Paddlefest steak banquet, raffle, silent auction and awards at Queen Elizabeth Campground

Monday, August 7th

  • 8:00-10:00 pm Community Pancake Breakfast partnered with Northern Life Museum
  • 10:00-5:00 pm Monday Group River Run and women’s specific intermediate kayak clinic* ($30/p)
  • 10-5:00pm- Edge King Big Wave event