Meridian Star

May 8, 2013

State Games kick off with Canoe and Kayak

from staff reports
The Meridian Star

MERIDIAN — The State Games of Mississippi kicks off the annual sportsfest this weekend on Saturday, returning to Pass Christian for it’s Canoe, Kayak and Stand-up Paddleboard competition.  With the growing popularity for health related and ECO Tourism events in South Mississippi, this will be the second year Pass Christian will be the site of this event. 

    “Not only is this a popular destination for these sports, but it is a beautiful course for the athletes.” said. Missye Dozier, Sports Director for the State Games of Mississippi.

    In last year’s State Games competition, the growing sport of Stand-Up Paddleboard was added to the tournament and Dozier expects the number of entries to double this year.  Athletes of all ages and abilities are encouraged to compete.  If you are new to the sport or lacking in equipment, tournament organizers have local kayak and SUP rental services available with reservations.

    The race will consist of three different courses for various types of boats and skill levels.  There is a two-mile course for recreational Stand-Up Paddleboards racers in protected waters, a four-mile course for Elite Stand-Up Paddleboarders/Canoe & Kayak racers in protected water, and an eight-mile kayak/unlimited half protected water and half Bay of St. Louis rougher water course.

    All races will begin Saturday at 9a.m.at Henderson Point Park, with on-site registration available from 7-8a.m.

     Racers are encouraged to pre-register on-line at  http://www.stategamesofms.org or call 1-800-482-0205 for more information.

    Entering its twenty-second year, the State Games of Mississippi is a statewide amateur sportsfest patterned after the Olympics.

    More than 5,000 athletes of all ages and abilities participate in the State Games.

    The event consists of thirty-seven sporting events and even includes an Olympic-style Opening Ceremonies, sponsored by Coca-Cola, Friday, June 14th.