Paddle Nights on the Anacostia River

Free paddling opportunities on the Anacostia River with the Anacostia Watershed Society!

Paddle Nights are a part of our Anacostia River Discovery Series, which also includes canoe and pontoon tours.

Paddle Night Details

Each event starts at 5:30 and runs until 7:30.  The events are first-come first-served, so come early for the best chance of getting out on the water.  Please register for each participant on our calendar HERE. Registration does not guarantee that there will be a boat available, but it does allow us to inform you of any changes or cancellations due to weather.   A cancellation due to weather will be made by noon on the day of the event.

If you have never paddled before, don’t worry!  Our instructors will help you learn:

·       Basic boating safety

·       Introductory paddling technique

·       Elementary maneuvering

Children are welcome!  All minors under 18 must be in a canoe with an adult.  AWS has personal flotation devices that will fit children over the age of 3; if your child is under 3, you may bring them out on the water if you have a Coast Guard-approved flotation device of your own.  

If you have a group of 8 or more people interested in learning, schedule a guided tour with one of our instructors. Please use our online contact form to submit a request, include your phone number, the names (and e-mail addresses) of those wishing to participate, and any dates you prefer for the class. AWS cannot guarantee availability on requested dates but will work with your group to find the right fit. 

 For more information, email


For the 2016 season, Paddle Nights will launch from two locations on the Anacostia River:

  • Bladensburg Waterfront Park (is a beautiful park situated near the original historical port of Bladensburg.  Just south of the confluence of the North East and North West Branches of the Anacostia River, from this site you can explore the most suburban launch point of the river.  There is a covered pavillion, picnic benches, and playgrounds, so it's an ideal location for a summer evening with your family and friends.
    • May 26 - Bladensburg Waterfront Park
    • June 16 - - Bladensburg Waterfront Park
    • July 21 - Bladensburg Waterfront Park
    • August 11 - Bladensburg Waterfront Park
    • September 8 - Bladensburg Waterfront Park
  • Anacostia Community Boathouse is located right at the place where the Anacostia River goes from rustic treasure to urban waterway. The boathouse is home to many area paddling teams, so see what a bustling urban launch point can look like. Paddlers can go across the river to Anacostia Park, up the river to see more wildlife, or down the river to see more of the city.  Cormorants, "ducks in tuxedos" abound at this site.
    • July 28 - ACBA

Date Event Location Registration
Thu, May 26 Paddle Night Bladensburg Waterfront Park Register
Thu, June 16 Paddle Night Bladensburg Waterfront Park Register
Thu, July 21 Paddle Night Bladensburg Waterfront Park Register
Thu, July 28 Paddle Night ACBA Register
Thu, Aug 11 Paddle Night Bladensburg Waterfront Park Register
Thu, Sept 8 Paddle Night Bladensburg Waterfront Park Register




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Anacostia River Discovery Series

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