The continuous heavy rainfall has prompted organizers to cancel the 24th annual Manulife Paddle the Don scheduled for Sunday, May 7.
This marks the first time the event is being cancelled in its 23 year history.
Organizers released a statement saying that the rain is causing fast flowing water conditions in our rivers, particularly in the Don and Humber.
“We are unwilling to compromise the safety of the more than 700 paddlers expected to take part in the event. Therefore, we have chosen to cancel the event this year – the first time ever in its 23 year history.”
The Toronto and Region Conservation (TRCA) who monitor the water levels also cited concerns over public safety as the reason for the cancellation of Paddle the Don, which raises both awareness and funds to support environmental stewardship across the GTA.
“Our primary concern is the safety of participants in the event,” Arlen Leeming, Manager, Don & Highland Watersheds, TRCA, said in a press release. “With the amount of rain expected to hit our region in the next 48 -72 hours, we felt the risk for participants was too great. We are disappointed we’ve had to take this step, but are confident this is the correct course of action as public safety is our number one focus.”
The event has set its date for next year, and is looking forward to being back on Sunday May 6, 2018.