The Lake Erie Challenge is an event held annually by Canadian Freshwater Alliance. This year, we here at Pelee Island Winery are joining the team both in Kingsville and on Pelee Island.
“We are literally surrounded by Lake Erie on Pelee Island and it grazes the shores of Kingsville. It’s not just a body of water, it’s an important member of our community”, shared Michael Lauzon, Manager of the Winery Retail Boutique & Wine Patio in Kingsville. “We are excited to be getting involved.”
As the most biologically diverse Great Lake, a major drinking water source, and the site of countless memories made, Lake Erie is essential to not only humans, but the well-being of our entire ecosystem. But the health of our Lake is currently under serious pressure from:
Annual, often toxic, algal blooms, that threaten aquatic, animal, and human health
Plastics pollution that is accumulating at an alarming rate
Invasive species disrupting the ecosystem’s balance
The compounding pressures of climate change, which is making matters worse
The Lake Erie Challenge
Support local athletes, and members of Caldwell First Nation as they take the Lake Erie Challenge on Saturday, Aug 28th! They will be covering 80kms by SUPs, canoes, kayaks and wing foils to raise funds.
When you donate to the Lake Erie Challenge, you’re supporting local Lake Erie Guardians, and their work improving the health of the Lake Erie watershed, including water quality monitoring, the reintroduction of native plants, advocacy for freshwater protection, and more! With your support, we can equip even more citizens to become caretakers of Lake Erie.
This year, the athletes want to raise $7500 to continue and expand the Lake Erie Guardians program in 2022. Help us reach our fundraising goal!
Meet Team SUP – Team SUP will be kicking off this year’s Lake Erie Challenge with an impressive 25km journey along Lake Erie’s shoreline – just imagine the length of an Olympic swimming pool 500 times over to appreciate the scale of this challenge. These paddling pros will launch from Cedar Beach in Kingsville and push east, through to our final landing site at Pelee Wings.
Meet Team Wingfoil – While the other teams are pushing themselves along the shoreline, Team Wingfoil will be setting off across open water, on a 50km journey featuring a stop on Pelee Island. After refuelling on the island, Team Wingfoil will launch back for a return trip to the mainland and join Team Caldwell and Team SUP as they land onshore in Leamington. Wingfoiling, a relatively new sport, combining the disciplines of windsurfing, kitesurfing and foiling. Wingfoilers stand on a compact board with an attached hydrofoil, flying over the water while being pulled by a very light, inflatable wing.
Meet Team Caldwell – By canoe, SUP, & kayak, Team Caldwell will join Team SUP and Team Wingfoil for the final 4km stretch of the Lake Erie Challenge. Led by youth from Caldwell First Nation, they will paddle alongside the athletes from the Leamington Marina to the finish at the Pelee Wings store.
If You’re on Pelee Island on August 28th
Join us between 10am and 12 pm (outside/all covid protocols followed), when Team Wingfoil lands on Scudder Beach. The Pelee Island community will be there to welcome them. Pelee Island Winery has teamed up with Pelee Art Works and Pelee Eco Works, The Taco Shack, The Filling Station , the Pelee Island Co-Op and The Wandering Dog Inn to welcome these athletes to our shore.
Pelee Eco Works and The Taco Shack will be hosting a beach clean up. Both The Taco Shack and The Filling Station will be open for business. The Pelee Island Co-Op will be offering a hydration station. The Wandering Dog Inn will have their beach clean-up “Trash Hole” bags for sale with proceeds to the Lake Erie Challenge. There will be a free community craft hosted by Pelee Art Works. Our Pelee Island Winery Pavilion team will be on hand with a grape tasting. Note our Winery Pavilion will be opening at 1pm on August 28th so we can all cheer on Team Wingfoil.
What is the Canadian Freshwater Alliance?
The Freshwater Alliance is a national initiative that builds, unites and activates networks of freshwater champions to drive change and secure healthy waters for all. Water is life. When scientists search for life afar, they look for water. But we have water here on Earth—the only known place in the universe—and an abundance of life that water sustains.
Not only does water sustain life, it nourishes our souls, it is the basis of our economy, it shapes the land, it connects our histories and will determine our futures. Canadians know how important water is: in a national poll, 94% agreed that “freshwater is our most precious resource.”
20% of the world’s usable freshwater is right here in Canada, but it is facing some significant threats. And, though it’s hard to believe, right here in Canada, not everyone has access to safe, healthy water.
Canadian Freshwater Alliance exists to address these challenges by driving needed change to secure healthy and safe waters for all.
More Ways to Contribute to the Challenge
Kingsville Winery Tasting Bar – Wine tastings are made by a donation of your choice. From now until Sunday, August 29th, all donations will be contributed to the Lake Erie Challenge.
SUP & Sip – Friday, August 21st and Saturday, August 22nd at Pelee Wings at 636 Point Pelee Drive, Leamington. Stand up paddle board followed by a wine tasting with Pelee Island Winery. Contact Pelee Wings to book 1-877-326-5193.
Thanks for joining us support the Lake Erie Challenge!
Pssttt… Don’t forget! While you’re here to sign up for our Birthday Club and receive a $20 Gift Voucher for your birthday!