A key feature of Wellington’s recent family-friendly events on Lake Wellington has proved so popular, the village is bringing it back through the summer.
Wellington will have two free days of kayaking and paddleboarding, then offer rentals through the summer, community programs coordinator Chris O’Connor said.
The village launched the Lakeside Family Fun evening and daytime events in February to bring attention to the Lake Wellington waterfront, accessible between the Wellington Community Center and the Wellington Aquatics Complex. Wellington’s staff has called the events a success, drawing hundreds to the previously quiet stretch of waterfront space. They have said the events could continue in the fall.
The first free kayak and paddleboard use will be 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, and again from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. May 26. Paid rentals begin in June and will be offered for $25 per person from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays through the end of August, O’Connor said.
In addition to the weekend rentals, vendor Paddle Away Sports will host Summer Sunset Tours and Board Yoga on the lake.
Boynton Beach-based Paddle Away Sports ran the kayak and paddleboard rentals for the Lakeside Family Fun Days. The company’s owner, Dean Ernst, said he’s seen a demand for paddle sports in Wellington since the first lakeside event on Feb. 17.
“The first event was more than I expected,” Ernst said, adding that he and his wife were the sole members of his staff for that lakeside day where he brought four tandem kayaks, eight single kayaks and eight paddleboards.
For the next event, he said, those numbers nearly doubled with more staff members, 14 paddleboards, eight tandem and 14 single kayaks.
“We had a huge line by 9 a.m. each day,” he said. “We were launching on average 120 to 125 people per event.”
And that doesn’t count those who signed up, but were turned away for lack of time. Ernst estimates there were between 50 and 75 people per event who weren’t able to take part in the free rentals. There’s been “a lot of excitement” about the kayaks and paddleboards at the lakeside events, Ernst said.
The Summer Sunset Tours will be held the first and third — and possibly fifth, if there is one — Saturday of each month through the end of August. Participants arrive at 6:30 p.m., launch at 7 and continue the tour through 8:30, Ernst said. There are no limits on how many people can join the sunset tour, but he does require at least six people to sign up for the tour to launch. The cost is $65 per person, $125 for a couple or $60 per person for groups of four or more.
The Board Yoga will be available the second and fourth Sunday each month through the end of August and is limited to about 12 people per session. Participants should arrive at 8:30 a.m. for the 9 to 11 a.m. yoga. The cost is $35 per person or $65 per couple.
For more information or to preregister for a kayak or paddleboard rental, call Paddle Away Sports at 561-541-6784.