Weather won’t stop Pride Paddle to bring together, support LGBTQ+ community

Photos contributed by Timm Zumm, FLOW

Despite inclement weather cancelling the official Pride Paddle, organizers of the event stuck it out and went out on the Wisconsin River with Pride gear and decorated boats to paddle from the Highway 14 boat landing to Pecks Landing June 26.

The second annual Pride Paddle was planned to invite anyone out on the River to celebrate Pride Month and the LGBTQIA+ community, led by Friends of the Lower Wisconsin Riverway’s (FLOW) mascot, Flo the PaddleFish.

Despite the brush with inclement weather, which attendee Bowie the River Dog (narrated through FLOW’s Timm Zumm) described as “ruff ,” the weather cleared off and made for a good paddle.

“It was beautiful, absolutely beautiful,” said Zumm, with a twinkle in his eye. “We started off in a bit of a drizzle, but once we got in the water the great river spirit was with us and it was great.”

Left to right in front: Kallan Engleson, Bowie the River Dog, Kari Engleson, Jennifer Torino
Left to right in the rear: Charity Roel, Nora Torino, Jennie Lanzendorf

Last year’s paddle included roughly 45 attendees and around 150 indicated they were interested this year.

Organizers Charity Roel and Jennie Lanzendorf said they were hoping to have a rain date set sometime in August and to be on the lookout on Facebook.