Who We Are
The Stamford Kayak Group (SKG) is a group of paddling enthusiasts looking to meet up with others to go kayaking. This group is for people of all skill levels and of all kayaking types (recreational, touring, whitewater, surfing, etc.). We meet regularly for sea-kayaking in Stamford, Greenwich, and Rowayton, but also plan meetups in other areas, both on the Long Island Sound and inland in freshwater locations.
If you are a beginner, this is the place to start. You will meet others who can give you advice before you buy any gear. If you are an experienced paddler, this group is an ideal way to meet other paddlers to talk about gear, local paddle spots, and to plan trips. Kayakers of all levels are welcome!
SKG is a forum and a social network, not a club, training facility, or outfitter. All events are common adventures, are non-autocratic in nature, and not for profit (unless hosted specifically by a business, institution, or outfitter following a different liability model). SKG, its organizers, and its members assume no legal and or civil responsibility for or to any individual or event.
We Encourage Safe Paddling
We suggest that everyone paddle in a pod of three or more for safety reasons. The forum makes it possible for novice, intermediate, and advanced kayakers to find each other and form safe paddle pods. The social nature of the group allows members to share safety tips and skills in a non-structured friendly format. We also try to send information to the group about safe kayaking tips and training. Occasionally we might have an event just to share and practice (but the group is not a certified kayak training school, vendor, etc). Safety is your responsibility!
How We Set Up Events
SKG is not a leader-dictated Meetup group, but a member-driven forum. Kayakers are welcome to join the forum and suggest locations for common-adventure paddles. All members can suggest a place, date, and time for a kayak event. In fact, SKG relies heavily on individual members to put events on the calendar.
You can schedule member-originated common-adventure paddles in the following ways:
Whenever you visit the SKG Meetup page, you will see “+ SUGEST A NEW MEETUP” just below the word “Welcome”… this is the mechanism for scheduling member-originated common-adventure paddles. Click here and you will be taken to a form that will prompt you to type in the event name, place, date, time, and details for your suggested meetup. In the details please describe the type of water (protected, open-water, white-water, etc.) and be very specific about the kayak type, skill level, and pace of your suggested paddle (just so others know what to expect of you and the paddle).
Alternately, you can view others SUGGESTED events to see if there is a suggested event that you might want to attend. Often a member will throw out an idea but not include any details. You can expand on their suggestion by specifying place, date, time, and details (including type of water) for the suggestion.
SUGGESTED events become UPCOMING events when two other members decide to attend, making the minimum three person paddle pod. The suggestion moves to the calendar and is announced to the group as an Upcoming event. Sometimes when an event is complete (i.e. name, place, date, time, and details are provided) one of the SKG moderators will announced it to the group with less than three people on the RSVP list to get the word out to all members sooner. We will not announce suggestions without the basic details.
Once it is on the calendar your idea is no longer a suggestion, but an event and it gets announced to the group by e-mail. Whenever you visit the SKG Meetup page, you should check the SUGGESTED events page to see if there is a suggested event that you might want to attend.
Many people worry that if they suggest a paddle too many kayakers will show up and they would be responsible for a large group. Most of the SKG events attract about 1% of the members, which is about 3 to 6 kayakers. That is just the right size for a group paddle. Members just need to be specific on the day, time, and place (as well as kayak type, skill level, etc.) when making a suggestion. The events are common adventures, so you are not responsible for others, just yourself, but there is always safety in numbers. However, you should be very specific about the kayak type, skill level, and pace (protected, open-water, white-water, etc.) of your suggested paddle. It is not a good idea for kayakers of a single pod to have a mixed expectation of the paddle... it just leads to disappointment and a paddle pod break down. In short, be clear in your suggestion description and others with like-minded thinking will join you.
SKG wants all its members to feel free to make paddle event suggestions. Such suggestions can be sit-on-top novice paddles in protected waters (i.e. lakes and marshes), intermediate-level day paddles, or advanced-skill sea-kayak paddles. Anyone can take the initiative to add paddle events to the calendar as discribed above... And, this is the best way to get events that work for your personal schedule and skill level so you never have to paddle alone.
Please read the The Stamford Kayak Group disclaimer: http://www.meetup.com/StamfordKayakGroup/messages/boards/thread/3398196