Happy Birthday U.S.A! Here’s to Freedom!!

Summer is officially in full swing and the long 4th of July weekend is here! Let the baseball games, grilling, and kayaking festivities commence!

Before we get into full party mode, let’s remember what we are celebrating!

 

On July 4th, 1776, the Second Continental Congress met in Philadelphia, united under a common idea of freedom. A fragile notion unlike any prior governments, our representatives and founding fathers came to a unified agreement and Declared our Independence! Since then, we have been celebrating July 4th as our nation’s birthday!

Hopefully our Lady Liberty won’t mind if we do some math on her age? 2017 – 1776 = 241 years! We are turning 241 this year, and although that seems old, we are a very young country.

 

We are excited to enjoy the long 4th of July with you! We have our George Washington eating a hot dog t-shirt, red/white/blue sunglasses, fireworks and we are waving our American flags proudly!

Want to hang out with us? Come see us at CommunityFest cruising in our shuttle across the island. At our first parade on Memorial Day, we were excited to join but didn’t have any flags to displayed at that time. The organizers weren’t too happy about this, but we redeemed ourselves on Flag Day, and we are even more ready for the 4th of July! 🙂

 

Heads-Up: If you still want to join our 4th of July Fireworks Paddle you still can if you have your own gear! Although our fleet is completely booked, if you have your own gear, you simply need to call us to arrange your booking to join! The floating view from the park shore line will truly be something special!

 

 

Finally — and we can’t say it enough — PLEASE BE SAFE THIS WEEKEND! Whether on water or land, look out for each other, slow down, and be smart! We are all trying to have a good time, but the smiles don’t spread when someone gets hurt!

Happy Birthday Lady Liberty – like a fine wine, you only get better with age!

Welcoming Waters Open for All

We had a great time putting together our latest official video and wanted to follow-up with a few more details!

 

First and foremost – a big thank you to our friend Gina Lytle! We are continuously learning and her insight supported our efforts to move forward to serve our community best! We always love the excuse to kayak and hang out together, and we look forward to more good times in the future, Gina!

 

We are happy to facilitate and guide adventures for our entire community! In our modern times, kayaking is more accessible than ever! With several resources in our local area, we can welcome people of all mobility levels to the water.

 

Our shuttle bus is accessible for people of all abilities. With a convenient wheelchair lift, we can easily and comfortably accommodate adventurers in wheelchairs! Have a private excursion idea – let us know and we will do our best to make it a reality!

There are many accessible launches and accessible bathroom facilities at launch sites throughout the Fox River Valley. Several years ago with grant money and a vision, these launch sites began being built for our community. People with mobility issues as well as the able bodied now enjoy a very user friendly way to access the waterways. These launches help take the “tricky” factor out of the whole process. Whether a person has the need for it or not, there is now an easy, simple entrance to the water for everyone.

 

Check out the video ‘Open for All’ below:

See you on the water!

Our Favorite Post-Kayaking Meals!

A sunny day on the water definitely works up an appetite. We recommend bringing a snack on the water so that you don’t get too “hangry” on an excursion, but sometimes a diet composed entirely of granola bars just doesn’t suffice.

We love to cook and eat! We have organized a few of our favorite post-kayaking meals for you to enjoy. With dishes for the meat and potatoes eater to the veggie fanatic, this list has something for everyone! We have linked some of our favorite recipes from various blogs, but there are definitely other delicious recipes out there!

  1. Fajitas

Who doesn’t love Mexican food? Fajitas are packed with veggies, rice, beans, meat, you name it! Guaranteed to fill you up after a day on the water!

http://avocadoninja.com/2017/04/19/veggie-fajitas/

 

  1. Pizza

Anytime, anywhere. Need we say more?

http://www.foodandwine.com/articles/best-homemade-pizza-recipes

 

  1. Jambalaya

We’re bringing the South up North with this tasty rice dish!

http://www.daringgourmet.com/jambalaya/

 

  1. Spaghetti

Nothing beats a classic and you can’t go wrong with pasta and sauce!

http://www.food.com/recipe/jo-mamas-world-famous-spaghetti-22782

 

  1. Burritos

More Mexican food! Because it’s awesome.

http://allrecipes.com/recipe/14041/delicious-black-bean-burritos/

 

  1. Burgers

The National Anthem should go “and the rockets red glare, the burgers grilling everywhere” because this is America and we can’t ever forget about burgers.

http://www.delish.com/cooking/recipe-ideas/g2729/best-burger-recipes/?

 

  1. Chicken Caesar Wrap

A perfect balance of hearty protein and light veggies!

http://damndelicious.net/2016/12/06/slow-cooker-chicken-caesar-wraps/

 

  1. Pesto Ravioli

For a warm, but refreshing delicacy, enjoy some cheesy ravioli slathered with fresh pesto.

https://addapinch.com/ravioli-pesto-sauce-recipe/

 

  1. Italian Sub

You will surely be satisfied with a sandwich packed with all the fixin’s!

http://www.sheknows.com/food-and-recipes/articles/1031529/classic-italian-hoagie-recipe

 

  1. Chips/Veggies and Dip

Something simple might be all you’re craving and this is a party favorite that everyone can share!

http://www.midwestliving.com/food/entertaining/20-easy-dip-recipes/

We are frequently asked for food or restaurant recommendations and these are just a few of the best! If you are searching for a local restaurant that serves these dishes, feel free to contact us – we are happy to share some of our favorite spots!

 

More frequently asked questions can be found on our FAQs page below:

http://foxriverkayakingcompany.com/?page_id=99

 

Let us know what you think of our choices, and feel free to give us more recommendations! We are always on the hunt for yummy food!

 

Behind the Scenes: Logo Development

Our team here at Fox River Kayaking Company consists of hard workers, passionate about what we do, and in love with the Fox River Valley community we support. One project we worked on for months in the very beginning was our logo.

The following is a behind the scenes look at how our logo came to be!

Looking back, it was an amazing experience, but let us tell you, there were moments when we thought “ugh, nothing is working, maybe we should upload some clipart and call it a day”. Of course, we did not go this route. Instead, we stepped away from the project, turned on a movie, and forgot about our frustrations until another positive working moment arrived.

From the inception, there were so many opportunities and directions to take that we were hard pressed to decide which angle to develop. Shapes, words, pictures, or colors; the options were endless and that was not good for people whose creativity is always stuck on hyperdrive.

Luckily Chewbacca refocused the Millennium falcon flight trajectory and this is when the elements of graphic design came forward.

We agreed that a sense of simplicity was best! So our approach was with a mind of minimalism.

Our passion is the Fox River, so it only made sense to depict the Fox!

Our approach was rudimentary at first. We reviewed various fox images, watched documentaries on Netflix, checked out books from the library, and searched for different perspectives across the Web. Then we took to pen and paper! We approached the project with a simple geometric approach with different perspectives – jumping, full body, face, etc. We were always making sure the drafts were symmetrical and balanced; for some reason, it wasn’t feeling right.

It should be stated now that the entire design process was done in house. We did reach out to our friend Cody, a professional photographer based in Door County with an amazing knack to exemplify the beauty around him! He supported us in translating the rough draft into a refined digital composite! If you are looking for a friendly, professional photographer for any event or project, Cody @TandemPhotographer should be top on your list! Website – http://www.tandemphotographyofdoorcounty.com/

Continuing to work through many drafts, the design just wasn’t complete! We needed a banner that we could stand behind, that represented our energy and passion! Months passed and still nothing, until one night…

Lots of crumpled paper balls piling up, we took a detoured inspirational drive, referencing other foxes we originally weren’t focused on, scrapping the idea of symmetry, and adding our own flare and BAM!

Your Fox River Kayaking Company Fox appeared!

Its asymmetry and rough design give it an approachable edginess; a timeless and unique style!

 

Interested in learning more about Fox River Kayaking Company? Check out our About Page!

http://foxriverkayakingcompany.com/?page_id=74

Interested in buying a T-shirt? Check out our Gear Page and stop in our shop to pick one up for yourself and another one for a surprise present!

http://foxriverkayakingcompany.com/?page_id=404

Happy Memorial Day Weekend!

We are keeping this week’s blog short and sweet – we are too excited about the long weekend to spend it all writing! 🙂

We have spent the week scoping out the waterways! If you are going to be on the water this weekend, here are a few fun things you can expect to see throughout the Fox River Valley:

rsz_littlechute_portage

rsz_goslings

Just a friendly reminder to travel safe out there this weekend. Whether you are driving on land or paddling on water, let’s look out for each other and be safe! We love firing up the grill and cracking open a cold one, but we always do this AFTER our kayaking excursions. Enjoy the fun party, but be responsible!

Memorial Day originated after the Civil War, and ever since then we have been honoring the men and women who sacrificed their lives while serving in the U.S. military. It was formally recognized as a national holiday in 1971.

Sit-on-Top VS Sit-In Kayaks: Question of the Ages!

Good day ladies and gentlemen and welcome to the main event, the battle of the ages: Sit-on-Top VS Sit-In Kayaks!

 

Introducing first in the one corner, Sit-on-Top kayaks! User friendly and outgoing Sit-on-Tops offer a knockout good time out on the water!

And introducing in the other corner, Sit-In kayaks! Close to the water and fun, Sit-Ins offer a one-two hit sensation with every paddle stroke!

 

We are in for a phenomenal bout, worthy of the Las Vegas, Chicago or New York rings! We hope we can settle this age-old question today and we wouldn’t want to be anywhere else, but the Fox River Valley to enjoy this contest! So, without further ado, let’s see these two float like a butterfly, sting like a bee and dance!

 

Let’s Get Ready to RUMBLLLLLLLLLLLLLEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!

 

Sit-on-Top

sitontop

The most user-friendly kayak style! Sit-on-Tops are versatile for everyone from beginner to expert!

They are reliable, stable and phenomenally easy to get in and out of! This makes them great for day trips because you can easily pull aside to shore and take a break for a delicious picnic!

These vessels have a wide and open deck which offers comfort on the water for all kayakers!
Tipped out of your kayak? No worries – simply flip the kayak back right side up and pull yourself back in to continue your adventure! No need to worry about sinking your kayak either – if you flip your kayak, the useful holes allow the water to drain out!

Sit-In

sitin

The coziest kayak style. Sit-Ins are designed for the long tours. The Vessel has a cockpit which you will climb into. This provides protection from the wind and elements!

Want to show off your skills doing an Eskimo roll or take on some technical rapids? With a Sit-In kayak you can use a spray skirt to successfully Eskimo roll and conquer those level 5 rapids without getting water inside.

Sit-In kayaks are widely available at most stores! This means there is a wide price range and many different style or size options! Don’t forget to do some research into different Sit-In kayaks, as the wide variety could cause you to get a kayak that doesn’t suit your needs or is not the quality that you require!

And the Winner Is…

Impossible is not a fact. It's an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It's a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing.-

After a highly contested and memorable fight, the results are in! Due to both contenders showing great qualities to support adventures out on the water the match ends in a technical draw!

 

As you can see, these kayaks serve distinct purposes.  Each kayaker has different needs, and it really comes down to which style you prefer personally!

Fox River Kayaking Company’s fleet is comprised of Sit-on-Tops due to their ease of use, safety, and comfort! We love the multi-purpose nature of our kayaks, and they are perfect for our calm and beautiful local waterways!

 

We are always happy to chat about Kayaks or Stand Up Paddle Boards! Feel free to contact us with any questions!

Behind the Scenes – Introduction Video

As we began the Fox River Kayaking project we knew a few videos would be needed to spread the word. This is the story behind our first video, which introduced Fox River Kayaking Company.

The idea to shoot our first video came in response to an entrepreneurial small business competition held annually by FedEx! The only problem was that we needed to submit this video in early March, meaning a video shoot had to take place in February. Every Wisconsinite on the planet knows our summers our beautiful, but our winters are nothing to mess around with!

Side note: Check out the FedEx Small Business Grant Contest. If you are working in a small business you should definitely enter for an opportunity to win a grant to support expanding or improving your gig! We received over 9,000 votes, but sadly did not win – we will be trying again next year! We also recommend searching for other local grants in your area as there are usually opportunities provided by local organizations!

Back to the story…

If you remember, there was a miraculous 2 or 3 day heat wave in February, which gave us an amazing opportunity! We didn’t think twice, running to get the necessary gear together to shoot the video and win the grand prize [plus a little paddle down the river to remind us that, yes, a summer would soon arrive]!

We dipped in at Appleton’s Lutz Park with no set script organized for the shoot. We were just excited to go kayaking again after months of snow shoeing, snowboarding, and other activities that start with SNOW!

With two people in the water and two on land we kept it simple and stated what we do – we offer guided kayaking & SUP excursions, gear rentals, and stand up paddle board yoga. Keeping it short and sweet! Even the simplest thing sometimes isn’t easy – it took more than a few takes to get a decent take.

Once we got all the video footage needed we wrapped up and headed to the library! We love our local libraries and we work post production in their technical labs. For all you aspiring videographers we highly recommend checking out your local library to use their free software and equipment! After a few hours of editing, the video was complete and ready to be shared with the world!

We have a great time making videos, and we got lucky with the timing of the heat wave for our first one!

Check out the introduction video here.

We’ve made several other videos since then, including one in which we interviewed locals about kayaking on the Fox River and one in which we discussed kayak fishing. Interested in watching more? Subscribe to our YouTube channel to keep up with the action!

There are more exciting Fox River Kayaking Co. videos currently in the making! Stay tuned!

Paddling Safety Tips

Spring showers have brought us May flowers and we are paddling into great kayaking season! As a community that enjoys living by the water, summer is always a special time – although our neighboring ice-fishermen would have other thoughts! 😉

As swimmers enjoy warm waves crashing into the Lake Winnebago beaches, kayakers cut through the heart of the Valley’s Fox River, and SUP paddlers venture through secret inlets, it’s also a time to be conscious about water safety. This safety information is not only for kids, but for adults too!

Here at Fox River Kayaking Company we take safety very seriously. We know how to have fun, but no one is having fun if it’s not safe! Our team has been trained in emergency response, carries dry bags fitted with safety gear, and is experienced on the routes that we take to know exactly where to navigate for a successful adventure!

Grow.with.the.Flow_1.0

Below you will find a few safety recommendations for a Kayaker or Stand Up Paddle Boarder:

  • Be mindful of the weather! Wind direction, cold water, storms, and blistering hot days can turn a happy day to a troubled day quickly if not managed correctly.
  • Wear appropriate clothing for the day’s activities – wear layers if it’s chilly and wear UV protective clothing on sunny days!
  • Always wear your properly fitted PFD!
  • Be aware of other boaters on the water – we’re all here to share the waterways and have a good time, but always be alert of your surroundings.
  • Tell a friend where you are headed and how long your outing will be!
  • Hide your pride, tell your guide! If you have any worries before or during one of our guided excursions, it is important that you let us know before anything goes wrong – we want everyone to feel safe, comfortable, and happy. Good communication on the water is a must!
  • Grow with the flow – as the PFD above says, always be prepared for conditions to change while on your outing. We recommend bringing dry clothes, plenty of water, and a first aid kit.

This list is not extensive, and we always take extra precautions dependent on the group with whom we are kayaking. Many of these tips are useful for any outdoor activity, not just adventures on the water! Each water outing is unique and one must be mindful of their environment and circumstances to take the appropriate safety steps and have a great time out on the water!

Everyone needs to stay extra vigilant and look out for each other out on the water to ensure that everyone is safe because when you are safe, you are having fun!

Wear.it_PFD

This may be our first publication about safety but it won’t be our last! Although it is not the most fun topic to go over, it truly is the most important.

Every one of our guided excursions starts with a safety discussion before launch. Every rental is supported with safety advice for success out on the water. Even if you don’t join us for a guided excursion or rent our gear, everyone is encouraged to reach out to us for information on how to be successful on our local water ways! We never want to see anyone get hurt or worse. The safety of our community is our number one priority!

Stay safe and have fun on the water!

Welcome to Our Blog!

Hello, and welcome to the Fox River Kayaking Company Blog!

You are invited to stay awhile, get lost in the adventurous reads, and enjoy the relaxing space we have designed to not only inform, but also entertain!

Everyone is busy with the day-to-day happenings. [There always seems to be a load of laundry to do]. Good old errands aside though, we aim to make this space fun and light hearted to provide a breath for everyone looking for a positive 5 minute break!

Our team writes with different styles and perspectives, but we pen our voice under one name – Fox River Kayaking Company! We also are open to guest articles – please feel free to contact us about getting a featured spot!

Themes and topics you can expect to see in the future will range from environmental, behind the scenes work, historical, paddle/water trends, and more!

So, no need to RSVP for this invitation, just show up for the read! Feel free to invite your friends as well – everyone is invited!