From across the bay, the Andermans are seen arriving at the island (Photo submitted)
STEWARDSHIP – “the responsible overseeing and protection of something worth caring for and preserving” www.dictionary.com
One fantastic thing about providing canoe outfitting services is experiencing our beautiful lakes and waterways, both personally and vicariously, through the paddlers we serve throughout the Valley.
We are often utterly amazed by the lengths to which some people will go – like the teams that do a spring pilgrimage along the rural roads and highways to pick up litter from the shoulders and ditches.
Last season we were inspired by the Andermans who regularly paddle with family and friends. They had planned a special summer outing with Grandma Christina, paddling a small area lake, exploring the islands, swimming and having a shore lunch with her grandsons. Unfortunately, their day began in someone else’s really big and disrespectful mess, at a normally pristine beach.
When Christina said, Maybe we should clean this place up before we set out, many hands made magic.
They eagerly cleaned every last tiny scrap of trash, broken glass and plastic off the beach, parking area and then the island! The kids and their grandma performed a small yet deeply consequential act, restoring a beautiful spot for the next folks to enjoy.
To help celebrate their family’s new love of paddling and to thank them for restoring some faith in the human condition, Madawaska River Rentals was inspired to create the annual Random Acts of Unconditional Stewardship Award. This recognizes special people, like the Andermans, for the little things they do in providing stewardship and for making it a priority to keep our natural spaces beautiful.
About the author: Deedee Sanderson grew up on an Ottawa Valley farm, at the end of a long dirt road. Love of nature, ecology, exploring and adventure fuels her spirit.
Madawaska River Rentals provides canoe outfitting services from their base in Quadeville, Ontario. As they enter their fifteenth season they celebrate their eco-conscious clients and thank ‘leave no trace’ visitors and residents.
Nominations of individuals or groups are open for the 2018 Random Acts of Unconditional Stewardship Award for acts within the Madawaska River Watershed. Click HERE to get in touch with Madawaska River Rentals to show appreciation for area stewards.
Editor’s note: Last year’s award package was a stay at Pod Camping on the Lower Madawaska River for a family glamping canoe adventure (including 2 day canoe rentals, outfitting & equipment, delivery and pick-up).