Great Fun for a Great Cause

What's better than raising funds for prostate cancer? Doing it out on the water in your PWC! Read on to find out where and when you can do it this summer.

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Maybe you’ve never gone on a personal watercraft ride. Perhaps you’re looking to find some jet ski-riding buddies. Maybe you just want to find someplace new with the family. Or perhaps you really want to ride for a great cause. Whatever your reason, why not try something this summer that’s only available in Ontario – a Watercraft Ride for Dad! 

The Ride For Dad concept is simple: Attract a group of enthusiasts to go for a poker run-style ride together to raise money for the fight against prostate cancer. This uniquely Canadian undertaking started in Eastern Ontario with motorcycles (now across Canada) and rapidly expanded to snowmobiles, ATVs, and personal watercraft after so many powersports fans discovered how much fun a Ride For Dad can be.

Believe me, it’s quite a thrill to hit the water with a fleet of other PWCs – as I did for their 1000 Islands ride. Everything was very professionally organized, including ride location, times, launch, guides, lunch, and prizes to make our day on the water enjoyable and memorable. There was lots of kibitzing, laughter, and PWC tale swapping – and best of all, the pace was casual and relaxed for everyone to enjoy. And I mean everyone –riders brought their kids, friends, and there was even a Sea-Dooing dog! 

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rideau lock filled with pwc

Here are this summer’s 2016 Watercraft Ride for Dad events – register now to get in on the adventure:

Saturday, July 16

Big Rideau TELUS Watercraft Ride for Dad, Perth, Ontario 

Explore the Rideau Lakes on this popular Watercraft Ride for Dad, staging from Rideau Ferry Harbour. The Rideau Lakes are a chain of six sparkling water bodies in the heart of the 202-kilometre Rideau Canal, where hundreds of boats travel between Kingston and Ottawa through 49 man-made locks each season. This cottaging paradise is ideal for discovery by PWC as I discovered on my own Sea-Doo tour of the Rideau Canal!

Sunday, July 24

TELUS Watercraft Ride For Dad Fenelon Falls, Fenelon Falls, Ontario 

If you’ve never visited the Kawartha Lakes by personal watercraft, now’s the time! This Watercraft Ride for Dad is based out of the Town of Fenelon Falls, western hub of the seven interconnected lakes, which are also part of the Trent Severn Waterway. There’s so much more to experience in the Kawarthas as I found on my own Sea-Doo tour, so you may want to stay over and make a weekend of it! 

Saturday, August 6

Riviere Ottawa River TELUS Watercraft Ride for Dad, Ottawa River, Ontario

The lower Ottawa River winds between Ottawa and Montreal at a leisurely and meandering pace, and Watercraft Ride for Dad is a great way for newcomers to get initiated to the Ottawa and Countryside region. Located in the heartland of one of Ontario’s vibrant Francophone regions, this section of the Ottawa River, near the Town of Hawkesbury, is just right for recreational jet-skiing, so find out more about cruising here!

Saturday, August 20

1000 Islands TELUS Watercraft Ride for Dad, Rockport, Ontario

No one really knows how many islands there are, but there are more than enough for hours of reconnoitring by PWC through sheltered back bays, hidden channels and under huge international bridges. This Watercraft Ride for Dad goes out of Rockport, on the Great Waterway, just downriver from Gananoque, often billed as the “Gateway to the 1000 Islands.” You’ll never tire of oohing and aahing at classic cottage mansions, cruise boats and eye candy island scenery, so here’s how to plan your own ride!

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I don’t know anywhere else in Ontario that offers organized PWC rides where it’s so easy to get your feet wet (so to speak) with Sea-Doo touring, so start planning and collecting your Ride For Dad pledges today!

Check out the other Ride For Dad powersport events, taking place throughout the year!

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About Craig Nicholson—The Intrepid Cottager

Popularly known in the summer as “The Intrepid Cottager,” Craig Nicholson is a freelance journalist, writer and communications consultant who specializes in motorized recreational activities, including personal watercraft. As an avid Sea-Doo rider, Craig logs over 100 hours and 3,000 kilometres (1,800 miles) on the water most summers on many waterways in Ontario and Quebec. His one-of-a-kind Intrepid Cottager website features his Sea Doo tour articles, PWC riding tips, product reviews and comment.

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