2018 Calendar of Events

Potomac River Celebration

TBA : S-Turn Giant Slalom Race
TBA : Potomac Potluck
TBA : Attainment Race
July 22, Sunday, 2:00pm : Family Day & Introduction to Paddling, partnering with Calleva, the Canoe Cruisers Association, & Team River Runner DC

Great Falls Race & Potomac River Festival

August 25, Saturday, 10:00am : Great Falls Race
August 25, Saturday, 2:00pm : Potomac Festival
August 26, Sunday, 10:00am : Little Falls Race
August 26, Sunday : [TBA] SUP Event

Paddle-the-Potomac Race Series

February 24, Saturday, 10:00am : Attainment Race
TBA : Attainment Race
CANCELED : Little Falls Race
August 26, Sunday, 10:00am : Little Falls Race


Great Falls Race
Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park, 11710 MacArthur Blvd, Potomac, MD 20854

S-Turn Giant Slalom Races
Great Falls National Park,9200 Old Dominion Dr, McLean, VA 22102

Attainment Races
Anglers Beach, across from Old Anglers Inn, 10801 MacArthur Blvd, Potomac, MD 20854 (38.9818873, -77.2262411)

Little Falls Races
Lock 5, Clara Barton Parkway, Bethesda, MD 20816

Potomac Festival
Rockwood Manor, 11001 MacArthur Blvd, Potomac, MD 20854

Potomac Pot-Luck

Family Day & Introduction to Paddling
Riley’s Lock, 13025 Riley’s Lock Rd, Poolesville, MD 20837

(Re-) Introducing the S-Turn Giant Slalom!

It’s Back

We’re bringing back the S-Turn Giant Slalom!

As early as 1969, the icons of Potomac River slalom hosted races from Horseshoe and ODeck, through S-Turn, to Rocky Island. Names such as Ron Lugbill, Bill Kirby, Davey Hearn, Bill Hearn, Joe Jacobi, Phil Coleman, Claudia Kerckhoff-Van Wijk, Jim Stuart, Eric Jackson, and Jamie McEwan would set up gnarly courses with gates above boils and whirlpools, and race down this natural, free-flowing river. As Jim Stuart recently posted on Facebook, “Slalom in the USA needs this level of passion!”

So let’s do it! On Saturday, May 19, 2018, we plan to bring the S-Turn Giant Slalom back to life. The course will be designed to welcome intermediate paddlers, as well as challenge elite slalom racers. We anticipate Olympic and World Cup athletes in featherweight composite boats competing alongside intermediate paddlers in plastic creek boats and on SUP boards. We encourage everyone who has the skills to navigate S-Turn and Mather Gorge to participate!

What is the S-Turn Giant Slalom?

A giant slalom race from the Fisherman’s Eddy area, with both down and up gates, through the ODeck, Portage, and S-Turn rapids, finishing at Rocky Island. Racers will be penalized for touching or missing a gate.

Start practicing your big-water ferries and pivot turns!

(Anticipated) Schedule

7:00 AM Staging Pre-Race Table Opens
8:00 AM Racer Meeting & Safety Briefings
9:00 AM Safety Crew moves to Course
10:00 AM Races Start
2:00 PM Anticipated Completion

Race Director: Ashley Nee


First Photo by Bill Kirby, 1985, (posted to Facebook by Chris Preparato)

Second Photo from American Whitewater (posted to Facebook by Jim Stuart)

2017 Great Falls Race Results

Full results of the Classic and Slalom races are now
posted to the Potomac Festival site.


1. Geoff Calhoun (Overall Race Winner)
2. Aaron Mann
3. Wyatt Hyndman
4. Andrew McEwan
5. Bryan Kirk
6. Ian Van Wingert
7. Pat Keller
8. Tad Dennis
9. Shane Groves
10. Jason Beakes


1. Jason Beakes
2. Josh Collins
3. Bryan Kirk
5. Shane Groves
6. Cooper Sallade
7. Andrew McEwan
8. Jordan Poffenberger
9. Bobby Miller
10. Taylor Pittman


Fastest Junior: Taylor Pittman
Fastest C1: Tad Dennis
Fastest Short Boat (Classic): Brenton Petrillo

Lots of great photos posted on the Facebook event page.