After two years up the creek without a paddle due to pandemic safety concerns and logistics, all manner of watercraft will be off the river banks and back in the water this spring for the return of the historic and popular St. George and Passagassawakeag river races.

The whitewater paddle events are a fundraiser for Maine Operation Game Thief, and supported by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, Marine Patrol and Waldo County Regional Communications Center and International Wildlife Crimestoppers,

The annual events, which attract canoeists, kayakers and standup paddleboarders, were not held the previous two years due to COVID-19.

The 41st St. George River Race will be Saturday, March 26 at 11 a.m. at the Fraternity Village Store in Searsmont and 47th Passagassawakeag “Passy” River Race on Saturday, April 2 at 11 a.m at Littlefield Farm on Savage Road in Waldo. The cost is $20 per paddler.

The events include Class I, II and III whitewater sections of the rivers.

The race categories include:

KS — Kayak short, up to 13 feet 4 inches.

K — Kayaks 13-5 and longer.

KW — Kayak women.

KWW — Kayak weekend warrior, beginner and intermediate kayakers.

OC1— Open canoe racing, one person.

OC2M — Open canoe racing, two people, racing canoes 16-6 to 18-6.

OC2Mixed — Open canoe racing, one male, one female, race length canoe.

OC1R — Open canoe recreational, one person.

OC1W — Open canoe recreational or racing, one female.

OC2Mixed Rec — Open canoe recreational, one male, one female, recreational canoe.

OC2RS — Open canoe recreational, two person, under 16-6.

OC2RM — Open canoe recreational, two person, recreational 16-6 to 18-6.

OC2 Junior/Senior Rec 12 — Open canoe recreational, one adult, one child ages 12 and younger.

OC2 Junior/Senior 13 — Open canoe recreational, one adult, one child ages 13-16.

Century Rec — Open canoe recreational, two person, combined ages more than 100.

Anything Goes — Any craft that floats.

High school — Open canoe recreational, two high school students.

OC2WW — Open canoe weekend warriors, no racing canoes.

OC2W — Open canoe, two women, any length canoe.

Clydesdale — Open canoe, combined weight 425 pounds.

MaineStay Media/VillageSoup sports staff can be reached by email at