June 21, 2006
At the FIBArk boat races you hear the pumped-up, excited voice of the announcer in full "extreme games" mode. The amplified commentary echoes off the Victorian brick buildings at riverside, down by the kayak slalom gates.
"It's Boone! Look at the power in that stroke! He's taking a strong line through the eddy!
"He's got the stick! We're seeing a good showing from the chocolate Labs this year!
"Next up, Royal Duke! Now there's a name to live up to!
Forget all the sunburned boaters in nylon and neoprene. The Crazy River Dog Contest is a real crowd-pleaser.
Kayakers think that they are cooler than rafters. River surfers think that they are cooler than kayakers playing on the same standing wave.
But no one is happier than a dog swimming with a stick.
River dogs photo by Al Delucia