Location: Kincardine, Ontario
792 Queen Street
Main Contact: Ash Adams & Tonya Schmalz (Owners)
What got you into the SUP business?
We took a trip to Maui, Hawaii in 2007 and on the plane ride there we were on the same plane as Jimmy Lewis. We were a current Jimmy Lewis dealer at that time so we had some good conversation about kiteboarding and SUP. Jimmy was just coming back from having some surgery done and he was heading back home and he invited us back to see the shop and his setup. At that time SUP was brand new and we seen the potential from what it could become and as soon as we came back we added SUP to our existing business.
What is your most memorable moment in SUP?
It was actually just this past winter here on The Great Lakes. A friend of mine is the president of Big Brothers Big Sisters Kincardine and I decided to join a campaign to help raise funds and awareness for there organization and to also challenge the youth in our community to get outside and choose a healthy active lifestyle. So for every KM I paddled on the water through the winter starting on December 7th I would give 1$ for every KM to Big Brothers Big Sisters Kincardine. This might sound like a pretty easy task to the average person or SUP enthusiast but up here we get some pretty harsh winters. I've never been able to paddle through the winter before so I didn't know what to expect. So this past winter I set a pretty tall order for myself to paddle 5km a day 5 times a week through the winter. One big advantage I had was with the El Niño in effect. It brought some milder temperatures our way and I was able to paddle well into January before the ice boxed us in. One day on the water I was paddling out and it was -14 degrees celsius without the windchill factor and I had to where snowmobile gloves just to get the paddle in. This was a great way to extend the season and challenge myself through some pretty harsh conditions. I never thought I would ever SUP in these kind of conditions and it only made me love the sport more.
How does SUP compliment your business?
Very well. SUP speaks to and attracts a very broad customer base as anyone of any age can enjoy it at all different levels of experience with so many different board options available these days. It allows us to offer our customers something that really does bring you into a fun, healthy and active lifestyle on the water. Whether it be recreational paddling, SUP surfing or SUP racing, paddle boarding really encompasses a wide variety of people; not just a specific demographic so that brings lots of different customers into our store for daily SUP rentals or for purchase.
Where do you like to paddle?
Right here at Station Beach Kincardine. It's a great place to get some flat water riding in and when the NW winds pick up we get some of the best SUP surf conditions here on The Great Lakes.
Favorite local restaurant for a post paddle meal?
Hawgs Breath Saloon
What is your favourite local SUP event?
West Shore Huron Classic // The Great Lakes Surf Competition presented by Billabong It brings all the surfers together with all divisions under one competition.
Shortboard // Longboard // SUP Surf
This has been a super fun event that's been growing fast!