2011 Symposium

This page recalls some special parts of the 2011 Inland Sea Kayak Symposium.


Artful Adventures:
artful adventures imageCreative expression brings fathoms of depth to your adventure palette; art adds to kayaking and kayaking adds to art. Those with previous skills are of course welcome, for those heading into uncharted waters on this one, jump on board and discover the bridge between paddle, pen and paintbrush!

French Language Connection
Visite de la bouche et le magnifique estuaire de la rivière Sand!
This is your chance to brush up and have fun with French language while paddling along the Lake shore from Little Sand Bay to the mouth of the Sand River and explore the wild life and quiet waters of this fingered estuary. Brush up on your French for this one! Hosted by a local guide and our Brittany friends; we will attempt to speak only French on this full day tour. Bring your fromage, accent grave et peut-être un dictionnaire serait utile!

Creative Journaling with Julie Buckles
On this tour, you’ll combine art and reflection by experimenting with new ways of playing with your journal. Take this time to explore the idea of an artist’s sketchbook/workbook, of writing and of introspection. We’ll look at different creative journals for inspiration and then start one of our own. We’ll try different on-the-trail artistic techniques and writing exercises. You should leave the day inspired with new ideas on how to journal more creatively on the trail. We’ll provide a journal and art supplies for the day. Or bring your own journal if you’d like.
Friday 9am-4pmjulie buckles image.

Julie Buckles paddled from Lake Superior to northern Saskatchewan, taking notes along the way. She later turned those scribblings into a full manuscript entitled: “Snowshoe and Red Canoe: My Honeymoon Year (accepted for publication by Raven Productions). Julie has been the key organizer of the Symposium for the last 10 years. Check her out at www.juliebuckles.com.

Digital Photography on Water with Dale Thomas
Follow the lead of professional photographer Dale Thomas through Bark Bay slough, a serene backwater estuary of Lake Superior. Winding river paths lead to the mouth of the Bark River and spectacular views across Lake Superior to the Minnesota north shore. Home to dragon’s mouth orchids, wild iris, bald eagles and sandhill cranes, this tranquil wetland provides more subjects than your lens can possibly capturdale thomas imagee in a day. The day starts off with nuts and bolts instruction about your camera then off you go on your daring search, leaving automatic settings behind and discover the world of F-Stop and Aperture!

Friday 9am-4pm

Dale Thomas is a professional photographer and owner of Northern Photographics and NP Studios in Ashland, Wisconsin. He has been teaching photographic workshops for nearly 10 years and is a member of the Photographer’s Education Association and the North American Nature Photographer’s Association.

Drawing on Water with Jan Wise
The beautiful sandstone shoreline along Washburn is the backdrop for this artistic paddle. Along the way, Jan coaches paddlers to observe color, light, textures and spatial relationships. In the afternoon, you’ll return to the registration tent for instruction in adding watercolor to your drawings. All art matejan wise imagerials provided for a small additional fee to be paid directly to Jan Wise.
Friday 9am-4pm

Artist Jan Wise is an active paddler in the Apostle Islands and points beyond. Her work can be found at Woven Earth and Superior Artist’s Gallery in Washburn and at Stone’s Throw in Bayfield. Jan provided the artwork for this year’s Symposium.


In addition to all of the amazing classes, tours and seminars; we are known to have a little fun during our symposium as well! Staying in the theme of the French Connection we have created a schedule of fun events that are sure to satisfy your appetite for both good food and a good time!


Note: Registrants, Spouses, significant others and friends ARE WELCOME AT ALL OF THESE EVENTS. Most are free. Prices are indicated when appropriate.

Symposium Registration Opens 4-6:30 pm Register for on-water and specialty courses.
Kayak Pick-up & Drop-Off 4-6:30 pm Pick up your Living Adventure rental kayaks
and/or drop off your boat in the secure on-site kayak corral.
Social & Wine Tasting Party 4 – 6:30 pm Location: Registration Tent

Come eat and drink the flavors of France and of our region. All of the senses are engaged as Lucia Watson of Lucia’s restaurant in Minneapolis, MN guides us through an exploration of wine, color, smell and taste. We’ll sample French wines and regional meads (the traditional renaissance wines enjoyed by the French Voyageur paddlers). Jon Hamilton, owner of White Winter Winery, a world-class producer of these delicious honey and fruit meads, joins Lucia to navigate this tasting experience.

Several popular local establishments are returning to add their special food and drinks to our opening event. South Shore Brewery brings their fabulous northwoods home brews and Big Water Cafe & Coffee Roasters introduce their Official Symposium coffee drink – the Cold Fusion. Since cheese goes ever so well with wine, Lucky Ewe and Sassy Nanny Homestead will be providing their special homemade sheep and goat’s milk cheeses to go along with our other substantial hors d’oeuvre.

To accommodate a variety of arrival times, we’re running the wine tasting presentations in three sessions: 4:00, 5:00 and 6:00 pm. You’re on your own in between to sample the wines and enjoy the treats.

We’ll hop, skip and jump (it’s a 1/2 mile walk) over to Washburn’s theater district to the beautiful StageNorth theater. This wonderful cultural addition to Chequamegon Bay includes a 145-seat theatre, two-story lobby and The Stage Door Bar with drinks, snacks, pizzas, wireless Internet and lakeview patio.
Growing Connections 7 pm – 8:30 pm
Location: StageNorth
A welcome from the Inland Sea Society and Living Adventure Inc. Grant Herman will talk about the connections between the north Brittany Coast and our region and sets the stage for the weekend’s events.

Business owners, artists, and entrepreneurs Lucia Watson and Jon Hamilton will share their passion and commitment for the principles of sustainability and utilization. They work actively to build and support coalitions and partnerships that support regional growers and producers. They develop products in their businesses that support their principles.

The Thursday Aftershow
Stick around for live music and discounted drinks at the Stage Door Bar!

Real Paddlers Eat Quiche! Dinner 5:30 pm Location: Washburn elementary School
Pronounced ‘keesh’ – the dish is a traditional French savory ‘pie’ but its roots are from Germany and other neighboring European countries that enjoy their own variations. But for our dinner, the Alliance for Sustainability volunteers will be whipping together meat and vegetarian quiches that will stand up to even the most ‘haute’ of ‘haute cuisine’! A fundraiser for another Bayfield region environmental organization. $10 per person for everyone. ($5 for kids 10 years and under)
From the school’s large cafeteria, just turn around and walk into the connecting gymnasium for the evening’s program.
Paddling The North Brittany Coast Of France 7- 8:30 pm Brittany shares a Celtic history with the coastal territories of northern neighbors Ireland, Wales, Normandy, and England. The northern coast of Brittany is known for the spectacular ruggedness and color of the pink granite that predominates. Tranquil sand beaches are bookmarked by heaving cliffs and astounding natural stone sculptures. Of note in this area is the remarkable tidal range — up to 40 feet in the spring tides. This is a mecca for sea kayakers and hikers – hiking paths run the entire length of the Brittany coast. Paddling rock gardens, island hopping, coastal exploration and of course wine and cheese lunches are features of this beautiful and dynamic presentation. Living Adventure co-owner Gail Green emcees the show along with our special Brittany guests: Louis Le Begat, Véronique Olivier, and Gaëlle Lefeuvre. If we’re lucky, Véronique and Gaëlle will accompany some slides with Brittany Fishermen’s songs!
$5 for non-registrants


Rescue Demo 5:15-5:45 pm with Nigel Dennis and Chris Gmeinder (Boreal Shores Kayaking)
Location: Symposium Demo Beach Area
Nigel and Chris will show, break-down and walk us through the latest and greatest in assisted and solo-rescues.
Le Peekneek! 6:00 pm
Location: Registration Tent
Michael Stanitis, owner and operator of Sassy Nanny Homestead will be whipping up some French country cooking Saturday night at the tent. The French region of Provence is located in southeastern France on the Mediterranean Sea and is the namesake of our savory dish for this evening: Chicken Provençal. Not just another pretty French name with a weird accent mark, this dish is fabulous and is accompanied with rice pilaf and salad. Vegetarian options available. $15 for everyone.

Celtic Music & Dance with Stepping Stones 7:30 pm
Location: Registration Tent
Foot stompin’, hand slappin’ off the charts fun is what we’ve dished up the remainder of the evening. It’s our Saturday night tradition to weave into the program and this time it’s interactive dancing with great music. Stepping Stones will perform an eclectic mix of Celtic/Scottish/Gaelic Cape Breton music. The band that includes fiddle, drums, piano and a variety of other instruments accompanies their beautiful vocals. Karen Kaufman’s lively teaching and calling of dances inspired from Brittany, Quebecois and Irish Ceili styles will ‘put to foot’ even the most reserved paddlers!

Au Revoir Brunch 11:30 am
Location: Registration Tent
It’s on us! Sit, laugh and reflect with friends at our last ‘official’ gathering of the weekend. In the family of round, tasty pan-style cakes, the galette is the gritty, savory and substantial big brother to the delicate, sweet and fragile younger sister, the crepe. The Breton galette, as it is properly designated, is associated with the regions of Normandy and Brittany, and this delicious buckwheat pancake at times replaced bread as a basic food. Lucia Watson is our chef par excellence for a delightful meal that will send you down the road filled with the deep satisfaction of a great meal and a great time. $10 for non-registrants

Sustainable Challenge Awards & Raffle Drawing Noon
Location: Registration Tent
We’ll present prizes to ones with the highest points in our Sustainable Symposium Challenge. And drum roll please…who’s going to win the beautiful Seaward Chilco x3′?
About Washburn
In 2005, Washburn became the first eco-municipality in the United States. Eco-municipalities aspire to develop an ecologically, economically, and socially healthy community for the long term, using Sweden’s Natural Step framework for sustainability as a guide, and a democratic, highly participative development process as the method.

Anchored to the shore of Chequamegon Bay, Washburn prides itself on its location, recreation, arts culture and education. It is a close-knit residential community of 2,000 people who enjoy a high quality of life, as well as access to primo kayaking. Nestled between the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore and the Chequamegon National Forest. Washburn is home to first-rate cross-country skiing, paddling, sailing, biking and hiking.

About the Symposium SiteThompson’s West End Park imageThompson’s West End Park (Symposium site) has 45 campsites, boat launch, fishing pier, dump stations, artesian well, electric hook-ups, handicap accessible bathrooms, showers, sandy beach, picnic tables, pavilion, and playground. This lake side park is located within city limits and is connected to the Washburn Lakeshore Parkway and Walking Trail. Camping with hook-ups is run on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Or, you can pre-register to camp in one of the overflow areas at Thompson’s West End. We have “leased” these areas for Symposium primitive camping. We offer a square big enough for a tent and an easy chair that is near a port-a-john, and has a great view of the lake. It’s on-site and near the showers and bathrooms. You may pre-register with us for camping in this designated area.

There are several motels, campgrounds and private rental houses in town. For more information about lodging, contact the Washburn Area Chamber of Commerce at 800-253-4495, e-mail them at washburn@cheqnet.netor log onto www.washburnchamber.com. The Bayfield Chamber of Commerce is also a good source of information, contact them at www.bayfield.org.
Rental Equipment

Participants are responsible for providing their own boating equipment for on water classes and paddling tours. All paddlers on these tours need a PFD, spray deck, kayak with two water-tight bulkheads or one bulkhead and bow flotation that doesn’t leak. Guides are required to check these so it helps if everyone follows this requirement. On the full day tours, make sure you pack a lunch and two quarts of water as a minimum. Rental equipment will be available through Living Adventure. Call or e-mail for more information or to make a rental reservation at info@livingadventure.comor 1-866-779-9503.
Rental fees 1 DAY 2 DAY 3 DAY

plastic single NA $55 $80

fiberglass single NA NA $110

fiberglass double $62 $112 $165

wetsuit $7 $12 $20

Light touring kayaks (12′ – 14′)

We will have instruction and tours for people with light touring Kayaks (12′ – 14′) with double bulkheads, spray decks, hatch covers etc. We will also have light touring kayaks for demos and rentals (see Living Adventure on-site for rentals). Rental rates not available at time of printing.

Become a volunteer and receive a discount on registration. There are a limited number of volunteer positions, so call early and talk to our volunteer coordinator Jen Maziasz at (715) 373-5980 or email her.coordinator Jen Maziasz at (715) 373-5980 or email her.

2011 Symposium Paddle Tours:

AMONG THE MANY GREAT REASONS people come to the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore is the geologic, ecologic and cultural history that carry the secrets of our Lake Superior ancestors. This is the home of the Anishinabe people, the French, the English and the Métis voyageurs of the 17th, 18th and 19th century fur trade as well as commercial fishing families, loggers, quarry workers, lighthouse keepers, maritimers and paddlers. The Anishinabe continue to call this area their home with reservations at Red Cliff and at Bad River at both ends of the Lakeshore. Keep your eyes, ears and hearts wide open for all the region has to offer.

Advanced Level Tours:

Rockin’ and Rollin’ with Nigel Dennis & Crew
We’re not putting a destination on this advanced tour this year; to keep distance and terrain open to the conditions that Lake Superior ‘powers that be’ give us. Please read carefully through the description of ‘Advanced’ before considering this trip which may get to Devil’s Island or may just end up a huge surf session on Bay View Beach! If conditions are sunny and flat, we may go for the mileage but if we have wind and waves, we will utilize the conditions and incorporate the tour with some fun skills clinics such as surfing and rescues. Bring your tow rope, safety gear, lunch and a vigorous attitude to learn and play hard!
Friday 8am-4pm

We list this destination as a minimum of Intermediate level (see description under Intermediate Tours), but will take a group of Advanced Paddlers on a slightly different ride! Be sure to sign up early since this trip fills on a first come, first served basis (excursion boat limited to 20 kayakers).
Additional fee: $65 (for the charter)
Friday 7am-5pm

Intermediate Level Tours:

We have chartered a boat to deliver kayakers (and hikers) twenty miles to one of the most spectacular islands in the park. We will break into intermediate and advanced groups, setting off around the tombolo into Julian Bay to explore the northeast end of Stockton. It’s got it all — Carribean-clear emerald green water, cliffs, arches, sea stacks and miles of white sand beaches. If wind and sea conditions cooperate, we’ll paddle to old brownstone quarries at Quarry Bay. This tour will be limited to 20 kayakers (with the advanced group) so sign up early if you are interested. It will be filled on a first-to-register basis. Additional fee: $60 (for the charter) Mileage for Intermediate Level paddlers: 8-10 miles.
Friday 7am-5pm

Raspberry Island
The Raspberry Island Lighthouse has been renovated in period style from the architecture and furniture, to the grounds and gardens. Completed in 1863, it marked the west-shipping channel through the Apostle Islands. This tour includes a 20-minute hike from the landing to the lighthouse grounds where a Park Service representative will provide a tour. The trip includes a stop on picturesque York Island. Additional $5 Park Service fee for tour of lighthhouse. 10 miles/2 crossings.
Friday, 8am-4pm

Mainland Sea Caves
Centuries of wave action and freezing and thawing have sculpted red sandstone into artful caves, considered the most spectacular of the Great Lakes. When Lake Superior is tranquil, kayakers have the opportunity to go where no one else can — in and out of delicate arches, into vaulted chambers, through the honeycombed rock tunnels, and into the caves deepest recesses.
Light-touring kayaks welcome. 7 miles/no crossings.
Friday, 8am-4pm; Saturday, 8am-4pm

Sand Island
Sand Island has the only lighthouse in the Apostles constructed of locally quarried brownstone. Beautiful sea caves at Swallow Point and remnants of a robust farming and fishing community are island features not to be missed.
8 miles/2 crossings
Friday 8am-4pm

Beginner Level Tours:

Chequamegon Bay Tour
This half-day paddle trip is designed as an afternoon follow-up to the Comprehensive Beginner’s Course. Explore the red sandstone cliffs and sandy beaches of the coastline adjacent to our Symposium beach and put those newly found skills to action. Light-touring kayaks welcome.
3-4 miles/no crossings.
Friday 12:30pm-4pm

Shipwreck Tour
On the night of September 20, 1901, the Fedora was making a run from Duluth to Ashland. As the ship passed Basswood Island, a kerosene lamp exploded in the engine room and the ship caught fire. Learn about the last voyage of the Fedora; paddle over and near the wreckages of the Ottawa and the Coffinberry as you cruise the shoreline and red cliffs near Bayfield.
4 miles/no crossings.
Friday 12:30pm- 4pm; Sat 8am-12pm

Inland Sea Kayak Symposium Raffle:

We are very excited this year to be offering some very impressive prizes in our raffle! Starting on May 1st you can purchase your tickets at Living Adventure and Boreal Shores Kayaks in Bayfield. Tickets will also be available for purchase at the Midwest Mountaineering Outdoor Expo in Minneapolis on April 15-17 and of course at the Symposium June 16-19.


A Seaward Chilco X3 fiberglass kayak (valued at $3625!)kayak image

Kokatat Helix Dry Top (valued at $224) and a Werner paddle (valued at $465)

Snap Dragon Spray Skirt (valued at $120)

2011 Silent Auction:

The silent auction items this year are nothing short of amazing! This list will continue to be updated as we get more items, but for now, just take a look!

Featured Raffle Items from Boreal Shore Kayaks:

greenland kayak image We are so very honored to have been given a handmade Greenland Kayak from Jo Foley! This handmade boat is 17 feet long, is teal over light sea green, has no metal, was made by hand by Jo Foley and includes a canvas sea sock, a foam seat and two spray decks. Thank you to Jo for this amazing donation!
A Ruthie Robe – Great for changing in and out of wet neoprene – around a campfire, or just being cozy at home! Wind- Stopper Pro Fleece. Machine Washable. Hand-made in Minnesota MSRP – $249.95
T-man Woodcraft 86” Greenland Paddle Made from Sitka Spruce – These paddles are incredibly durable and quite resistant to weathering. Much easier on the joints and muscles, Greenland paddles are gaining quite a following, and with good reason too!
MSRP – $249.95

Other raffle items include:
DONALEE DESIGNS Cabochon Sterling Silver Bracelet
Eckels Pottery
Enso Wellness Center & Day Spa package
Enso’s “Spa Technologies” Facial Products
Jan Wise prints
Peak UK Neoprene spray skirt
Silverwaves kayak and water jewelry
Stone’s Throw pottery
and much MORE!

he French Connection’s Special Guests

We are thrilled to welcome a very special group of guests to this year’s symposium.

From Wales, UK:
nigel dennis photoNIGEL DENNIS is the owner of Sea Kayaking UK and is a well known contemporary kayak designer and expeditionary. He completed the first ever sea kayak circumnavigation of Great Britain with Paul Caffyn. Since then Nigel has carried out expeditions in Antarctica, Easter Island and the televised expedition around Cape Horn. In many ways he has inspired fellow sea kayakers to explore the great coastlines of the world. We are excited to have him back with us this year and encourage you to join in one of his classes. Hailing from Wales, UK, he is surrounded by the Celtic culture and brings a ‘north of the Channel’ paddlers perspective to our French Connection theme.

From Minneapolis, MN:
lucia watson imageLUCIA WATSON is the proprietor of Lucia’s Restaurant, one of the twin cities’ favorite neighborhood establishments. Besides many notable awards in the gastronomic world, Lucia has an impressive record of contributions for sustainable business practice and support of local growers. Lucia’s love for cooking began watching her grandmother Lulu cook over a wood stove at the family cabin on the Canadian border. She earned a BA in French, studied cooking, and attained her first level Master Sommelier certificate. Her love and expertise with French language and wines influenced her co-ownership of a villa in a small medieval town in Brittany and voilà, the eventual seed for this year’s theme was planted.

From Asheville, NC:
DANNY MONGNO is known to some as the Werner Paddle rep, to others as an extraordinary paddler of many disciplines, and to a small audience as the infamous ‘landshark’, Danny can be thought of as no less than a humble, charismatic and excellent sea kayak coach with a deep sense of caring about his work. Keep an eye out for him in the Werner van when he swings through your town on the running trail, white water take out, lake, local surf spot or anywhere else that paddlers gather. Bar stools not excluded.

From Breton, France:
louis la begat imageLOUIS LE BÉGAT is a tour de force of character; a gritty Breton with a wealth of life experience reflected in his sharp intellect and witty humor. He and his wife MarieFrance, now retired, were teachers of English and taught worldwide. He lives in the beautiful Brittany seaside village of Paimpol where he started kayaking with a youth hostel. His destinations have expanded to now include most of the French coastline, Britain, Sicily, Spain, the Outer Hebrides and Germany. Louis speaks some of the local Breton language and picked up a wee bit of Gaelic from his time teaching in Scotland.

VÉRONIQUE OLIVIER works as a teacher and lives in Rennes, the capital of Brittany, France. She is an active policy maker and writer for the regional Connaissance du kayak de Mer paddling club and is currently co-authoring a travel/guide book that includes 60 paddling itineraries in Brittany. Veronique is a fan of traditional style paddling and has built several of kayaks. If you had to be trapped on an island off the Brittany coast, she’s the one you’d want to be with to survive; her knowledge of local edible plant and sea life is extensive.

GAËLLE LEFEUVRE is a delightful personality that embodies the spirit of Brittany; she is full of historic stories and songs from an era long ago and is eager to share them with us. She presently lives in Amiens, a town in the north of France famous for its beautiful cathedral, and works for the French Ministry of Youth and Sports where she teaches a variety of outdoor activities including kayaking.