In past years, our SHR group had a lot of fun celebrating Oktoberfest with a biking event, followed by authentic German music, food, and beer at Doner Bistro in Leesburg. This year, we'll celebrate Oktoberfest with a scenic autumn paddle on the Rhode River near Annapolis. Afterward, it's just a short drive to the Old Stein Inn for real Bavarian food, beer, and socializing in it's outdoor biergarten. Anyone is welcome to join us there around 3:30 pm.
Kayaking the Rhode River at SERC
The Smithsonian Environmental Research Center (SERC) has a beautiful facility located about 10 miles south of Annapolis. Their extensive grounds along the Rhode River are a mix of pretty woodlands, open fields, an old estate, and modern buildings dedicated to environmental research and education. SERC is open to the public for nature hiking and kayaking from its excellent dock and boat ramp.
Our kayaking route will explore the SERC's water trail of historic and environmental features on Muddy Creek, as well as the broader Rhode River. The paddle distance will be approximately 6-8 miles. This will be a fairly easy and relaxing paddling adventure in a place many of us have not experienced.
The fee to launch a kayak is $5.00. Check-in at the Visitor Center and pay the launch fee when you arrive. Then unload your gear at the SERC boat ramp, and move your car back to the Visitor Center lot.
THERE ARE NO RENTAL KAYAKS AVAILABLE AT SERC, so you'll need to bring your own boat and gear. Here are some local Annapolis rental options:
Full details and directions are available on the SERC website:
This event is suitable for anyone with basic kayak skills who feels comfortable paddling near open water. The Rhode River area is generally calm, but winds and larger boat traffic can create swells and wave turbulence. You should be prepared to deal with some choppy water.
ALL PARTICIPANTS MUST WEAR A PFD AND BE RESPONSIBLE FOR THEIR OWN PERSONAL SAFETY
Our group of recreational kayakers look out for each other, but we're not certified experts at rescuing novices. SHR paddle events have been very successful so far because we stick together in case anyone needs assistance.
We'll need good kayaking weather for this event. I'll post a notice and send out an email by 9:00 am if we need to change plans or cancel. A little rain is okay and can add to the adventure, but we won't paddle in storms, lightning, high winds, excessive heat or other dangerous conditions.
Oktoberfest at Old Stein Inn's Biergarten
After our paddle, we'll drive five miles to the Old Stein Inn at 1143 Central Avenue (Rt. 214). The Old Stein is an amazing bit of authentic Bavarian charm in rural Maryland featuring a variety of tasty German dishes and a wide selection of beers. Its outdoor biergarten is shaded and covered to protect from the elements. Live music is typically offered on weekend afternoons, especially during Oktoberfest. Our SHR group has had some good times there!
Anyone who doesn't paddle is welcome to come join us at the Old Stein Inn around 3:30 pm. Fall weather should be perfect in late September, and we can go indoors if it's too hot or cold. The Old Stein interior is also very authenticly Bavarian and comfortable.
Full details, directions, and reviews for the Old Stein Inn below:
I hope to see you there! Call Jake at[masked] with any questions.