Dubbed  a race for the toughest of tough, the Steeplechase Canoe Race is not for the weak or faint at heart. It is a paddle-and-drag type race that will require not only canoe skills, but strength and endurance as well. One will be required to navigate the mighty Silver Creek through brush, briars, beaver dams, and natural bridges.  It is a race that will challenge your body, mind and grit. That being said, are you tough enough for the challenge? 

If you are over 18 years old, SummerFest is looking for you!  Teams of two, who are 18 years old or older will navigate the Silver Creek starting at the bottom of Carlisle Hill and ending at Deluxe Cleaners, after going under the State Route 88 Bridge, turning around before the falls and coming back to the cleaners. An extra incentive has been added this year to the race. The crew with the fastest time will not only have bragging rights for a year, they will also have  $100 more than they started with. This year’s SummerFest Committee has decided to award the team with the fastest time  $100.

So what are you waiting for? Go to www.garrettsvillesummerfest.com to register for the race and watch the short video that shows  what to expect while running the course. There is a limit to how many teams will be accepted so early registration is advised. There is an entry fee of $25 per team and all participants must wear deck or tennis shoes and must be 18 years of age by June 29, 2013 in order to participate.  You can also register the day of the race, if there are spots available. Participants will need to report to   the “SummerFest Marina” by Deluxe Cleaners on Elm Street by 8:30am Saturday. The races will begin at 9 am and they will have a staggered start.  Canoes, paddles, life jackets, and transportation to the starting point will be provided and the team that completes the course with the fastest time will be declared the winner and receive  $100.

OK, maybe you’re not into the grueling, labor -intensive Steeplechase Race, so how about some family canoe races? These races also require shoes and can be done whether one has a lot of experience in a canoe or a little. Minor children will need a parent’s signature to participate and there is a one-time $5 entrance fee per person for the family canoe races, no matter how many family races one enters.  The family races are for all ages; life jackets will be required and provided in standard sizes. Please note, shoes are required for all canoe races and one may or may not get wet depending on the races entered so having an extra set of clothes/shoes is advised. The family races are Sunday following the parade at 2:30 pm. Gather your friends and family and come and join us for a splashin’ good time.

The Steeplechase race is sponsored by The Middlefield Banking Company and the family races are sponsored by Geauga Vision.


 This year’s SummerFest will be held on June 28th-30th.  The primary sponsors are Garrettsville Area Chamber of Commerce, Kepich Ford/ Main Street Grille and Brewing Company, University Hospital Geauga Medical Center, Charles Auto Family and the Weekly Villager. SummerFest is traditionally held the fourth full weekend in June at the intersections of State Route 82 and State Route 88 in downtown Garrettsville www.garrettsvillesummerfest.com