Bellaire Chamber of Commerce

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Paddle Antrim Festival

September 13 - September 15

Paddle Antrim is celebrating the amazing treasures of Northern Michigan’s Chain of Lakes. This non-profit organization is hosting the Paddle Antrim Festival. The event is highlighted by a two-day kayak paddle through Antrim County’s Chain of Lakes and its communities.

The two-day paddle begins on a beautiful sandy beach in the Village of Ellsworth. From Ellsworth, paddlers meander 15 peaceful miles through four small lakes to the Village of Bellaire. This portion is a must-see with waters calm enough for beginning kayakers to enjoy. The second day is a 27-mile paddle from Bellaire through the turquoise water of Torch Lake to the Village of Elk Rapids. As a non-competitive event, paddlers are encouraged to choose their own adventure, and they offer many paddling options anywhere from 7 to all 42 miles. Individuals may select to paddle only one day or drop out at any of the checkpoints along the route either day. To make the event stress-free, shuttle service can be added at time of registration.

Beyond great paddling, the weekend will be filled with great food and festivities. Each day paddlers will receive a great lunch and the communities will host a great event with music and refreshments for the paddlers. On Friday the Bellaire Chamber of Commerce will host a Block Party at Richardi Park for paddlers with music, food, games, community booths and more. The Festival ends with a bang at the Final Bash Saturday night in Elk Rapids. This great party is for paddlers and the entire community to come out and enjoy live music and great food and drinks. Paddle Antrim’s top sponsors Short’s Brewing Company and Pearl’s New Orleans Kitchen will be there serving up the most amazing food and finest brews for all to enjoy. Each paddler will even receive a complimentary dinner and beer at the Final Bash.

Changes to Paddle Antrim Festival

We are excited to host the 4th annual Paddle Antrim Festival this September 13-15th.  This is going to be a great year as we took this awesome event and made changes to incorporate even more paddlers while keeping paddler safety our top priority. We will now allow all kayaks, canoes, and surfskis on Day 1 and part of Day 2. We now have additional requirements for crafts entering the larger lakes on Day 2 (after checkpoint 1), allowing only longer kayaks that have the capability to do a deep-water self-rescue to proceed. We are excited to invite more paddlers to join us. To learn more, check out our blog post or read the updated rules online.

You can also join them for small hour-long paddles throughout the communities on the Chain of Lakes this summer. For registration or additional information, please go online at, email or call 231-492-0171.




September 13
September 15
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Paddle Antrim
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