Kayakers Launch Organization; First Outing is July 9

by Lisa Hamm-Greenawalt

(June 28, 2006) -- The newly formed Kayakers Alliance Of Larchmont and Mamaroneck (KALM) will embark on its debut group kayak outing on Sunday, July 9, 2006, putting in at 4:30 pm from the boat ramp at Harbor Island Park in Mamaroneck. Anyone interested in kayaking the Long Island Sound is welcome to attend. The rain date is Sunday, July 16.

The Kayakers Alliance also plans to participate in the Swim Across America on July 29, when over 100 kayakers support swimmers crossing the Sound to raise money for charity (See: Swimacrossamerica.com).

These are only the first two activities planned at the Alliance's inaugural meeting on June 19, 2006. About 25 kayakers turned out, in addition to a number of supportive local government leaders, including Town of Mamaroneck Supervisor Valerie O’Keeffe, Town Councilman Ernie Odierna and Town Councilwoman Nancy Seligson. The group, which already has more than 70 people on its roster, set as its mission improving local and regional water access, improving affordable near-water kayak storage opportunities, enhancing communication among local kayakers, and offering kayaking activities.

KALM’s founder is David Hellerstein, a Larchmont resident who purchased a kayak in summer 2004 and then discovered how difficult it was to get access to the Sound, thus spurring him to form the Alliance. His story can be found in the Larchmont Gazette's commentaries (See: Kayaking in Larchmont Harbor: A Modest Proposal.) The group hopes to return the region to the glory days when the Long Island Sound was alive with people enjoying the water in small crafts. Mr. Hellerstein’s website, kayakthesound.tripod.com, notes some local water access points.

Directions for Kayak Outing

The Harbor Island Park boat ramp is located just inside the park, at the southern end of Mamaronck Avenue,in the Village of Mamaroneck. The ramp to put in boats is to the left of the guard house after you enter the park. Parking is available (for a small fee) to the right.

The next KALM meeting will be held in mid-July. Anyone interested in joining the KALM email list should send a request to kayakthesound@gmail.com.

Lisa Hamm-Greenawalt is president of the Sound Shore Runners & Multisport Club.