‘Great Loop’ Paddlers on Hudson Greeted with Fanfare by Croton-on-Hudson Fans

At Senasqua Park in Croton-on-Hudson, N.Y. State Senator Pete Harckham (left) congratulates and honors Great Loop paddlers (from left) Ryan Ranco, Neil Benedict, Tylo Diabo, Hickory Edwards, Freddy Wilkinson Photo > Stephanie Gaudinier

View Great Loop leader Hickory Edwards speak to the gathering at Croton-on-Hudson’s Senasqua Park (Video > Stephanie Gaudinier)

Ten paddlers representing the Haudenosaunee nations were greeted Wednesday evening, June 21, by admiring
residents, elected officials and others at Senasqua Park in Croton-on-Hudson during the paddlers’ scheduled stopover during their celebrated Great Loop journey, which coincided with Summer Solstice.

The crew is about 500 miles into their 1500-mile journey on the so-called Great Loop, from Old Town, Maine, to the ultimate destination of New York Harbor. After the Croton stopover, they were headed north to Troy (N.Y.) and then will row their way to Quebec (Canada).

The effort, which is being documented by National Geographic, is intended to raise awareness of Indigenous relationships with local waters and the importance of environmental conservation. The group is led by Hickory Edwards, founder of the Onondaga Canoe and Kayak Club and member of the Onondaga Nation Turtle Clan.

Croton-on-Hudson Mayor Brian Pugh presented a proclamation declaring all the paddlers, including leader Hickory Edwards (left), as honorary citizens of the village. Photo > Stephanie Gaudinier

Croton-on-Hudson Mayor Brian Pugh named June 21, 2023, Great Loop Paddlers Day throughout the village and presented the paddlers with honorary citizenship to  the River Town.

New York State Senator Pete Harckham presented the crew with a proclamation as well.

Native American folk band Inti-Andino, several of whom reside in Ossining, serenaded the paddlers and well-wishers.

Stephanie Gaudinier volunteers for the Croton Caring Committee and is a resident of Verplanck.  

The canoe that is ferrying 10 paddlers on the Great Loop needed a rest too. Photo > Stephanie Gaudinier

1 Comment

  1. So much action on the Hudson! Thanks for bringing this story to RJ readers who couldn’t be at the Croton stop over of the Great Loop Journey.

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About the Author: Stephanie Gaudinier