Beaver Creek woman and child in red kayak
23 May

Beaver Creek people gathering with kayaks  Beaver Creek Flotilla officials on dock

The 7th Annual Beaver Creek Kayak Club Flotilla, sponsored by First Bank, was an exceptional day of paddling, camaraderie, and community spirit. Held on Saturday, May 18th, the early morning event saw participants and spectators gather to embrace the adventure awaiting them on the picturesque Beaver Creek. The weather forecast leading up to Saturday’s flotilla appeared uncertain; however, by mid-morning, the skies had cleared, the temperature was comfortable, and just a few clouds hung overhead, providing sufficient cover for an invigorating 6.2-mile paddle.

Beaver Creek woman speaking on mic  Beaver Creek Floatmaster speaking to crowd

Paddlers of all ages and skill levels converged at the starting point located at Aubrey’s Launch behind Powell High School. Their colorful kayaks and life vests created a vibrant tapestry along the creek’s edge. The event started with an enthusiastic welcome from Beaver Creek Kayak Club president, Charlie Austin, who expressed gratitude to First Bank for their third consecutive year as title sponsor. “First Bank’s sponsorship has allowed us to make the Flotilla an annual highlight for our community. It’s wonderful to see so many familiar faces in the crowd and new friends coming out for the first time to enjoy Beaver Creek.” Many paddlers raised their hands, acknowledging it was their first time participating in the Flotilla but excited to paddle the creek.

Beaver Creek Knox County Commissioner speaking and gesturing with mic  Beaver Creek men shaking hands

Larsen Jay, Knox County Commissioner, recognized the club for its service to the community and acknowledged Knox County Parks and Recreation for their role in Clearing, Cleaning, and Caring for Beaver Creek. To date, they have removed 2100 tons of debris from the creek, restoring its health, improving water quality, animal and plant life, reducing flooding, and providing a recreational asset for the community.

Beaver Creek Karns High School student Krickett Jones  Beaver Creek man speaking with mic

Krickett Jones was recognized as Jr. Floatmaster for the event. Krickett is a Karns High School student who excels in both academics and athletics, and who was recently awarded the 2024 RSSAA Girls State Wrestling Championship for her weight class.

 Jeff Jarnigan kicked off the Flotilla as Floatmaster, announcing that it was a great day to be paddling on the creek! Jeff has served the East Tennessee community for 30 years as the announcer for the University of Tennessee Football, Basketball, and Pride of the Southland Band. He has committed his career to connecting people and was an obvious choice for this year’s Floatmaster.

Beaver Creek woman and child in red kayak  Beaver Creek woman in blue kayak

Following the opening ceremony, the paddlers took to the water, their kayaks gliding smoothly across the creek’s surface. The creek is known for its serene beauty, with the surrounding trees and foliage reflecting vividly in the clear, calm waters. The gentle current ensured that both novices and seasoned kayakers could enjoy the experience without concern. As the Flotilla progressed, the true essence of the event became evident. The Flotilla wasn’t just about paddling—it was about building and strengthening friendships and fostering community. Laughter and conversation filled the air as paddlers stopped to photograph the wildlife and picturesque scenery along the way. It was a reminder of the simple joys and natural beauty the Beaver Creek area offers. As the participants reached the endpoint, the takeout was at Charlie’s Launch, on the BoardSafe Kayak Launch located at Roy Arthur Stormwater Park. There was a palpable sense of achievement and fulfillment among the participants.

Beaver Creek cows standing among trees  Beaver Creek three kayakers paddling

Scott Tihansky of BoardSafe Docks commented, “The Flotilla is a perfect example of what the Beaver Creek Kayak Club stands for: enjoying nature, promoting wellness, building and connecting communities. This aligns directly with the benefits a BoardSafe universal access launch system provides for communities across the USA.”

Beaver Creek two women paddling blue kayak  Beaver Creek people smiling at the camera

The 7th Annual Beaver Creek Kayak Club’s Flotilla was more than just a day on the water; it celebrated friendship, nature, and community. As participants packed their gear and headed home, they carried memories of a perfect day and a renewed appreciation for the simple yet profound joys of life on Beaver Creek.

BoardSafe Docks is happy to support Knox County in creating water trail access along the 44-mile-long Beaver Creek. Our signature product, the adaptive kayak launch, includes accessibility features that enable paddlers with mobility challenges to access their watercraft safely and more easily. We believe accessible and adaptive kayak launches are a key infrastructure component for successful paddle trails. Paddle trails with an accessible launch provide a range of economic benefits to communities, including increased tourism, increased property value, improved recreational opportunities, and universal access to the water for all paddlers.

Beaver Creek adaptive kayak launch  Beaver Creek woman using kayak launch

BoardSafe designs, fabricates, and installs adaptive fishing piers, aluminum floating docks, rowing docks, gangways, and pedestrian bridges. Contact us at or call 610-899-0286 and allow us to help you design your community’s water trail. #AccessYourAdventure #AccessibleKayaking #AdaptiveKayakLaunch #UniversalAccess #WaterTrails