Race The River in the Neches Wilderness Canoe Race

Clear your schedules for this year’s annual Neches Wilderness Canoe Race on August 5th. Canoeists and Kayakers of all skill levels and ages are expected to conquer the toughest race in Texas this summer! This race will cover about 22 miles of the beautiful Neches River. Hit the water with paddlers from all over the state for a good cause. Already sold? You can register online today.


The Neches Wilderness Canoe race began as a fundraiser sponsored by the Trinity Valley Community College in Palestine, TX. The college’s chapter of Phi Theta Kappa, a national honor fraternity, came up with the idea when looking for ways to help out their community. When Ed Furman, race director for the past 20 years, was deciding on a scholarship option, the first thing that came to his mind was a “canoe race.” Everything after that is history, and the group set the plan in motion.

Now, many years later, the group is committed to fulfilling the educational needs of the community, by “running the waters.” Every year, large groups of community volunteers and sponsors have made this race the most challenging race around. It has become a tradition around Texas — one that annually attracts the “largest field of paddlers in the state.” Over the last 22 years, the excess funds of the race have provided countless scholarship opportunities for deserving students.

The Canoe Race

The race will be on August 5th, 2017 with a 6:30 AM check to start. The leisure class will begin at 8 AM with the pros advancing at 9 AM. You can register for the race through the mail or online. The race is divided into two classes of paddlers: the pro class and the leisure class. If you choose the leisure class, you will start 1 hour before the pros. The head-start is to avoid having the advanced class spring ahead of the beginners. This way, the pros should catch up to the leisure paddlers, and it adds almost an extra obstacle for them to surmount. For tips on how to prepare for the race, check out these helpful tips.


The organization is always looking for volunteers to ensure that the race moves smoothly. If you are looking to get involved, make sure you fill out a volunteer application. They really appreciate all volunteers and all that they do to help out the community. See you there!

McLarty Toyota

If you are looking for reliable transportation to get you and your family there safely, make sure you check out McLarty Toyota located only a few short miles away!

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