Is paddling in the Baltimore Harbor safe?

Groups have been paddling safely in the Baltimore Harbor for many years, but we do not take safety for granted. In fact, safety is our number one concern. Motorized safety boats will be patrolling the route and will be able to offer paddlers first aid and other assistance as needed.

We will be monitoring water quality leading up to the event so that participants can be made aware of recent conditions. Sinks with soap and hand sanitizer will be provided at Canton Waterfront Park.

Is water quality a concern?

Yes, water quality is always a concern in urban waterways and you should take time to familiarize yourself with local water issues by reviewing the Healthy Harbor Report Card or checking the most recent water quality data on

In the case of a major water pollution event in the days leading up to the Floatilla we may ask participants to take extra precautions such as not participating if they have compromised immune systems or open wounds and asking participants to consider wearing gloves and waterproof clothing.

The itent of this event is to raise awareness about water pollution issues in the Baltimore Harbor and we want all participants to understand the risks associated with paddling in an urban waterway.

What happens if there is bad weather?

This is a weather dependent event and safety is our priority. If there is a small craft advisory, the event will be cancelled by 6AM the morning of the event and you will be notified via email. If there is no small craft advisory but the weather is not ideal, the event will still take place but the route may be shortened to ensure safety.

What is the registration deadline?

No, all participants must register by 6:00pm Sunday, June 4th.

Do you need to have previous paddling experience to participate?

Yes, previous paddling experience is mandatory for participation in this event. This is not an event for first time paddlers; this is a five-mile round trip course in an urban waterway. We ask that all participants have previous experience paddling five or more miles.

Is there an age limit to participate in the event?

Yes. All participants between the ages of 13-15 must be accompanied in the same boat by a parent or guardian; all participants between the ages of 16-17 must attend paddling event with parent or guardian but may operate their own craft; all participants 18 years or older may paddle individually without parent or guardian.

What is included with my registration?

Your $40 registration fee includes supervised launching from Canton Waterfront Park, a registration packet, a Baltimore Floatilla t-shirt, food at the After Party, and live music.

What if I don't own a kayak, canoe, or paddle board?

To participate in the Floatilla you must either bring your own boat or rent a kayak or stand up paddle board with Ultimate Watersports through the registration page.

Can I attend the MOMs Organic Market After Party if I don’t participate in the paddle?

Yes, the MOMs Organic Market After Party is free to attend. Food and t-shirts will be available for purchase.

Do I have to bring my printed ticket to the event?

Nope! Bring a valid ID and we will have a list of names.

Event Details
What is a flotilla/floatilla?

A 'flotilla' is defined as a gathering of a fleet of ships. We have decided to name this event a 'floatilla' as a nod to the traditional definition, but with a connotation of action and intent. A 'floatilla' is a gathering of vessels that have united to publicly support a cause, and our cause is a healthy harbor!

Why host a paddling rally in the Baltimore Harbor?

The Baltimore Harbor is under a tremendous amount of environmental stress caused by sewage overflows, trash, and polluted stormwater runoff. We are coming together in solidarity to support the environmental restoration of this ecosystem because we value the health of our city, our harbor, our bay, and our oceans.

The key message we wish to send with this event is:

  1. "Fix the Pipes" because Baltimore's aging stormwater and sewer infrastructure results in millions of gallons of pollution entering the Harbor each year.

I don't paddle but I want to support clean water. What can I do?

We would love your participation! You can either participate in the rally by HarborPlace in the amphitheater between 10:30am and 11:30am, or meet us for the After Party at Canton Waterfront Park at 12pm.

When should I arrive?

If you are paddling, please arrive no later than 7:30am, ready to launch by 8am. If you are rallying only, meet us on the promenade in front of the Science Center by 10:30. The After Party will begin at 11:30am.

Where can I park?

Carpooling is encouraged! Canton Waterfront Park has free parking for up to 70 cars on a first come, first served basis. Once that lot is filled participants can drop off their vessels at the park but will then be directed to the paid lot at 1500 S. Clinton St where there are hundreds of parking spaces. Limited street parking is also available in the vicinity.

What is launching like at Canton Waterfront Park?

There is a floating dock and a concrete boat ramp on either side.

Can I launch from another site and participate in the event?

All individual paddlers participating in the event must check in at Canton Waterfront Park at 8:00am on Saturday, June 10th. Group paddlers in pre-notified and pre-determined group will launch from Harbor Hospital boat ramps. There is to be no crossing of the main channel after 8:00am

What is the refund policy?

If the event is cancelled participants will receive a full refund within seven days. We will notify you of a rescheduled date later in the summer.

What should I bring to the event?

You should come prepared to be outside and exposed to the elements for the duration of the event. To participate, you will need to bring a kayak, canoe or paddleboard, a paddle, a life jacket, and a large bottle of water. You should also consider bringing sunglasses, sunscreen, a hat, snacks, shoes, and clothing that you won't mind getting wet and/or dirty.

Will there be water filling stations?

Yes. Please bring a reusable bottle to refill at our water bottle refilling stations.

Can I volunteer?

Yes! Email for more information.

Still have questions? Contact us!