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Float Your Fanny Down the Ganny in Port Hope, Ont. to return in April after 2-year hiatus

The 40th Float Your Fanny Down the Ganny in Port Hope is scheduled for April 9, 2022. Northumberland Tourism/Twitter

The 40th Float Your Fanny Down the Ganny in Port Hope, Ont., is scheduled to hit the Ganaraska River in April after a two-year delay.

The COVID-19 pandemic forced the cancellation of the traditional river race in 2020 and 2021. Organizers on Thursday announced this year’s event is scheduled for Saturday April. 9.

In the event of inclement weather, the races will be held on April 16.

Read more: ‘Float Your Fanny Down the Ganny’ race commemorates 1980 Port Hope flood

The event began following the April 1980 flooding on the river which heavily damaged parts of downtown Port Hope. Each year, hundreds of participants build their own watercraft to float in the 10-kilometre race.

At the finish line, “Fannyville”, the outdoor event village, is set up to host various food, drink and merchant vendors, on-stage entertainment, children’s activities, and a live commentary of the race results, culminating in an award presentation for the race finalists.

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“After a two-year hiatus due to restrictions from the pandemic, we are cautiously optimistic about the return of Float Your Fanny and a community celebration to mark the 40th race in our history,” stated Bob Sanderson, Mayor of the Municipality of Port Hope.

“We are keeping a watchful eye on the COVID-19 situation and after careful consideration and in collaboration with community and emergency service partners, we are able to take the first step in the planning process. As we have seen over the last couple of years, plans may change in the coming weeks and months and the committee is ready to pivot operations at any time, but for now, we are working towards hosting the race and taking a more local approach to our promotion of the festivities.”

Event co-chair Barry Adamson says plans continue with the municipality including its fire and emergency services who will be on site during the event. The event plan was previously reviewed by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, to ensure the municipality remains in compliance with all policies and procedures to support the safety and sustainability of the fish and wildlife habitats in the river.

“We’ve been hibernating for two years and are ready to celebrate the unofficial start of spring with the return of this much-loved Port Hope tradition,” said Adamson.

“Our small non-profit organization appreciates the support of the Municipality to help us bring this event back to our community calendar. We are excited, cautious, but ready to get back out there and have some good old-fashioned fun.”

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Participant registration is now open on the race website: www.floatyourfanny.ca

Highlights in 2018 and 2019:

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