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The


Director’s Eddy Hey it’s your birthday…


W hat do Martin Sheen, Martha Stewart, Tom Brady, Brooklyn Decker


and Metallica rocker, James Hetfield, have in common with the ACA? We were all born on August 3. I often get asked, what are you going to do


for your birthday? On behalf of the ACA I have a birthday request for ACA-ers and paddlers. On August 3, 2014, ACA will be celebrating


its 134th birthday. It’s an excuse for a paddling party. Take someone out paddling, volunteer to help clean a local waterway, hold a competition or give a lesson, but most importantly, have fun. Not too much to ask, right? Very rarely have we, as ACA members,


paused to hold a celebration for the nation’s old- est and largest paddlesports organization. ACA members are the power behind the organization that has inspired Olympians, changed clean wa- ter regulations, limited pollution, broken dams created access and developed curriculum for most paddle craft for people of all abilities. Today, the original themes of camaraderie


and exploration run strong in programs as ACA instructors and members strive to give people the tools to recreate outdoors safely and eas-


ily. At 134 years old, we have seen incredible changes in technology. We continue to adapt to new com- munication tools and take advantage of technological advances that will help future generations get out on the waterways


in the hopes that they too will work to protect the places where they recreate. From 1924 until the mid-1990s the ACA was


the paddling governing body for the Olympics, and today, healthy competition is still part of our programming with six national competi- tions. In the last five years we have signed or written hundreds of letters of support for pad- dlers’ rights and protecting the environment. We have testified before, met and pleaded with decision-makers to ensure that the paddle community’s point of view is represented. Throughout the last century the ACA has


led the way to help make the world a better place to paddle and we are looking forward to the next 134 years. The implementation of our state director program is just one more reason to celebrate on August 3. Please send us pictures of you celebrating


the ACA’s birthday and we’ll post them to our website.


Wade Blackwood, Executive Director ACA Canoe-Kayak-SUP-Raft-Rescue


Paddle Green Bags » Collect. Upload. Track. T


he ACA’s Stream to Sea Initiative combines paddling with good on-water stewardship. We believe the best way to inspire people to care about waterway environments is to encourage a


connection to the outdoors through exploration. We are more apt to protect the places we cherish and enjoy on a regular basis. That’s why we developed a tool that makes it easier for paddlers to take care of the waterways they love. Paddlers are on the front lines of the marine debris issue because 80 percent of all ocean


marine debris originates in freshwater streams and rivers. Paddle Green Bags give paddlers the necessary tools to remove marine debris while exploring their waterways. These bags are designed at the ACA’s National Office by paddlers for paddlers. The ACA has extensively re- searched, tested and found the best fabrics that are abrasion resistant, durable and made with environmentally friendly dyes. Paddle Green Bags come in two sizes and allow for co-branding. The purpose of Paddle Green Bags is to mitigate marine debris at its source in all waterway


environments. The ACA also needs your help tracking the trash you remove. You can do this through our Track Trash form, available in both desktop and mobile-friendly versions. By en- tering your trash data online, it not only gives you credit for your hard work, it also allows the ACA to report trash-related issues on your waterway to local, state and federal decision makers. Together we can stop marine debris where it starts. Buy your Paddle Green Bag today: www.americancanoe.org/paddlegreenbags For more information visit: www.americancanoe.org/marinedebris


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