Vernon financial advisor Aaron Nasipayko, who will compete in September’s Dancing With The Vernon Stars, plans to paddleboard the length of Okanagan Lake this weekend to raise money for the North Okanagan Hospice Society. (Photo submitted)

North Okanagan paddleboarder takes on lake for hospice

Dancing With the Vernon Stars participant Aaron Nasipayko hopes to paddle length of Okanagan Lake

Admittedly, Aaron Nasipayko paddleboards better than he dances.

In a way, the Vernon financial advisor will be dancing on water this weekend, as the upcoming 11th annual Dancing With the Vernon Stars participant plans to standup paddleboard the length of Okanagan Lake to raise money for the North Okanagan Hospice Society.

Nasipayko will leave very early Friday morning either from Vernon or Penticton, depending on the weather, and, if Mother Nature cooperates, hopes to arrive at the other end of the lake in two-to-three days.

“Although the lake is 134 kilometres long, the actual paddle could end up being 150 km if I am needing to cross due to winds,” said Nasipayko, a native of Humboldt, Sask. “So what does that mean? Long days of paddling a minimum of six-to-seven hours if not more.

“I’ll see what goes on with the weather and use it to my advantage. The shortest distance for this is the middle of the lake, but it will depend on the weather. A system moving in could change things. I don’t know how far I will be able to paddle each day, which side of the lake I will be on and where I will sleep. I will be packing most of my food with me, sleeping in a travel hammock and relying on some good friends to spontaneously accommodate me and replenish me where needed.”

The lake paddleboard is a personal goal of Nasipayko’s this summer, one he has been preparing for over the last couple years. He completed the first David Thompson Paddle Sports Classic last year, a 124 km excursion from Mica Dam to Revelstoke Dam over three days. It’s B.C.’s longest paddle sports race.

RELATED: Vernon dancers kicking up their heels for hospice

He’ll dance the salsa at Dancing With the Vernon Stars on Friday, Sept. 28, at the Vernon Lodge ballrooms, with partner Kristi Bieber and the pair felt the lake paddleboard would be fun to incorporate with their fundraising efforts.

The person who guesses the closest to Nasipayko’s total paddle time to cross the length of Okanagan Lake will be the recipient of a complimentary night at any Prestige Inn properties in B.C., two free paddleboard rentals compliments of Kalavida Surf Shop, two sports massages from Impact Sports and Health Clinic in Vernon, and two bottles of Okanagan wine.

But, you must donate to the North Okanagan Hospice Society to guess via the link https://bit.ly/2xHRsYH.

“For $25, you get one guess, $50 gets you two guesses and $100 gets you five,” said Nasipayko. “Hint: if conditions are good I travel about six-to-seven km hour. Okanagan Lake is huge and I hope your hearts are equally as big so please donate and have some fun with this.”

Donations must be made with the link.



roger@vernonmorningstar.com

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