Geoff Blake, owner of Rhode Island Paddle Sports, 1 Water St. Credit: EG News
No more complaining all of you folks who want to get on the water but don’t happen to own a boat – as of this summer East Greenwich is home to not one but TWO paddle sports rental operations. We wrote about one of them, East Coast Paddle Sports, last week, then promptly found out Geoff Blake at Norton’s Marina had opened up Rhode Island Paddle Sports.
Our kayaks runneth over.
Blake, manager of Norton’s, said the idea started percolating in his head last summer.
“Last year a lot of people would come into the store, either drive in and say, ‘Hey, we’re looking for something to do on the waterfront,’ and there really wasn’t anything. And we have a lot of transients who come in by boat and they would say the same thing,” said Blake.
So, he invested in kayaks – sit-on-top, sit inside, doubles, long-distance, small – some paddle boards (SUPs), and a few windsurfers and set them up at the very northern end of Water Street. (Technically, the address is 3 Division St., but GPS likes 1 Water St. a whole lot better.)
The location is just about perfect, with a low, steady dinghy dock for getting in and out of the water, and a lot of room in the mooring field to play around in. At the top of Greenwich Cove, the spot makes for easy short trips, to Chepiwanoxet, Goddard Park, or up the cove to Scalloptown Park. There’s also a comfy on-land sitting area.
The hours are noon to sunset but this Saturday they will be open from 10 a.m. to sunset and will donate half of whatever they take in to the East Greenwich Animal Protection League. So, you can kayak or paddleboard and know that you are helping EGAPL at the same time.
For more information, contact (401) 864-0403. For paddle board lessons, talk to Geoff or text Harold Ambler (401-391-3351). He teaches individuals or groups of two or three. “Standup paddling is way easier than most people think, and it’s a blast,” said Ambler.