Paddling to Win: Announcing the 2021 Winners of Paddlepalooza

On the sunny Saturday morning of June 5th, 99 kayakers and canoers gathered along the banks of the Clinton River at Riverside Park, in Downtown Auburn Hills, for the 13th Annual Paddleplaooza. All participants, young and old, were geared up to take the eight-mile trip that ends in Rochester Hills at River Crest Professional Center. 

This year, 14 men competed in the kayak race which was won by Mitchell Treadwell and seven women competed in the kayak race which was won by Gwenn Stevenson.  Of the seven teams that entered the canoe race, the team of David Fiddes and Violet Fiddes took home the first place trophy. 

This year’s Mayors Challenge Cup was won by the Auburn Hills team of Mayor Kevin McDaniel and James Stevens in a close race with the Rochester Hills team of Mayor Bryan Barnett and Orion Township Supervisor Chris Barnett, finishing just 1.23 minutes behind.  This victory extends Mayor McDaniel’s consecutive winning streak to six.

The remaining 64 paddling enthusiasts took a slower pace down the river, enjoying the scenic views and wildlife that often gather along the river’s riparian corridor each morning.   

Race Results

Kayak Race – Men’s Division

1.  Mitchell Treadwell 1:37.01 

2.  Richard Ensley 1:39.37

3.  Harvey Mannond 1:40.00

Kayak Race – Women’s Division

1.  Gwenn Stevenson 1:50.50

2.  Michelle Tingall 1:52.52

3.  Patricia Dengler 2:01.21

Canoe Race

1.  David Fiddes and Violet Fiddes 1:57.50

2.  Jason Boggs and John Dunivant 2:13.11

3.  Jeff Orzechowski and William Nalu 2:42.10

Mayor’s Challenge Cup

Mayor Kevin McDaniel and James Stevens – Team Auburn Hills

To learn more about kayaking and canoeing the Clinton River and all the access points along the river, please visit the Clinton River Watershed Council’s Water Trail webpage at

If you’re interested in learning to kayak or canoe or have a desire to get out on the water but don’t have a watercraft, please visit Clinton River Canoe & Kayak at or Simple Adventures at

Thank you to all the sponsors and supporters:

Shawn Keenan, City Planner

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