The 3rd annual Spokatopia Outdoor Adventure Festival Saturday, July 8 at Camp Sekani Park on the Spokane River has grown into one of the biggest and most fun events of its kind in the region. The outdoor-recreation oriented festival with live music, a beer garden, and over 50 exhibitor booths, is one of the biggest bike and paddle sports demo events in the Northwest. General admission is free, although some of the activities have a modest cost to sign up.
“The idea behind Spokatopia is to let people try all sorts of different outdoor activities, from demoing bikes and paddleboards to rock climbing, disc golf, slacklining, kayaking and canoeing, yoga, trail running, geocaching and more all in one place in a safe, welcoming environment,” says Shallan Knowles, one of the event organizers.
Try Different Outdoor Activities at an Adventure Clinic
Festivalgoers can try out many different outdoor recreation activities, all in the Camp Sekani/Boulder Beach area. Activities include stand up paddleboarding, kayaking, canoeing, SUP yoga, rock climbing, geocaching, disc golf and other fun outdoor sports. Prices range from $10-20 per person depending on the clinic and include equipment and instruction. More info at: Spokatopia.com/excursions. Space is limited, and these clinics sell out, so don’t wait to sign up.
Intro to Rock Climbing: Learn rock climbing basics on mellow routes in the crags behind the festival grounds in a friendly, encouraging atmosphere, sponsored by Mountain Gear. Learn rock climbing techniques to reach the top of a rock face. All the gear and equipment is provided for this exciting and challenging sport. Multiple sessions. Cost: $20 per person.
Voyageur 8 Person Canoe Tour: Take a guided voyage with Spokane’s Canoe & Kayak Club in this historic 22-foot voyageur canoe that will hold up to eight people. Rides leave Boulder Beach for several 30-45 minute long tours. All equipment is provided and no experience is necessary. Cost: $15 per person.
Stand Up Paddleboard Lesson: Join Spokane Parks and Recreation for a stand-up paddleboard tour. Stand up paddleboarding, or SUP, is a great workout and balance tuner and a fun way to share the summer sun and water with others. No experience is necessary and all equipment is provided. Multiple sessions. Cost: $15 per person.
Tandem Kayak Tour: The best way to experience the Spokane River is with a paddle in your hands and sun on your skin. No experience is necessary, only the desire to paddle. All equipment is provided. The 60-minute trips led by Spokane Parks & Recreation begin with a 10-minute warm up and instruction. Multiple sessions. Cost: $15 per person.
Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) Yoga: Kick off your Spokatopia experience with a tranquil SUP yoga sequence with SUP Spokane. This amazing cross-training sport is low impact on the joints and is used to improve balance and core strength. Multiple sessions. Cost: $20 per person.
Inflatable Kayaking: Join FLOW Adventures on an inflatable kayak adventure down the Spokane River. Inflatable kayak trips make a terrific alternative to hard-shell kayak tours for those wanting to try something new. They are incredibly fun and easy to paddle and maneuver. Individual and tandem kayak options are available. Multiple sessions. Cost: $20 per person.
Disc Golf Intro Lesson: Team up with an experienced player from Disc Golf Uprising for a 1-hour lesson. Learn about different types of discs and how they fly, proper stance and grip, disc golf terms, and more. Cost: $10 per person.
Intro to Geocaching: Come and experience this high-tech scavenger hunt. Cache-Advance instructors will teach you the tricks of the trade in the geocaching world as well as sharing new strategies for locating skillfully-hidden caches and basic GPS skill and equipment tips. Cost: $15 per person.
The Biggest Bike Demo and Sales Event of the Year
Local bike shops, including Wheel Sport, North Division Bicycle Shop, Mojo Cyclery and The Bike Hub, will be offering demos and selling bikes from Specialized, Pivot, Yeti, Trek, Rocky Mountain, Santa Cruz and other brands. Come check out full suspension, front suspension, hardtail, and downhill mountain bikes; fat bikes; hybrids; 29ers; and road and commuter bikes. This will be the biggest bike demo and sales event in the Inland Northwest this year, so don’t miss out if you’re thinking about buying a new bike or want to see what’s out there for the future. Demo bikes can be checked out and ridden on Camp Sekani single-track, forest roads or on Centennial Trail pavement at the festival. Bring your helmet, bike shorts, gloves, water and whatever else you need to be ready to ride. A current photo ID is required.
Water Sports Demos
Try inflatable SUPs with Fun Unlimited and canoes, kayaks and paddle boards with Mountain Gear at Boulder Beach below the central festival grounds on the lake-like waters of the Spokane River behind Upriver Dam. Bring your board shorts or swimsuit, sunscreen, and a towel to Spokatopia to take advantage of this fun opportunity to try different paddle sport toys!
Free Sekani Mountain Bike Shuttles
For one day only, you can ride your choice of Sekani trails without having to pedal or push your bike to the top in the July heat unless you want to! Bring your own mountain bike or take a demo bike for a spin down your choice of Camp Sekani trails, from easy, intermediate to expert or insane. And then catch a ride back to the top in the Evergreen East sponsored shuttle vehicle and do it again!
Mountain Bike Jump Jam
Watch talented local riders fly through the air on bikes, pulling off tricks and launching off huge gapped jumps that few mountain bikers can execute and land. Follow the signs to the Camp Sekani bike park through the trees a few hundred yards to the east of the main festival grounds. This free event promises to be an awesome experience for spectators.
5K & 1.5 Mile Up Chuck Challenge Trail Run
The Up Chuck Challenge trail run starts at Camp Sekani Park on the Up Chuck Trail for a fun, nearly all single-track 5k climb to the top of Beacon Hill (1,000 feet of elevation gain). There’s also a 1.5 mile version for runners and walkers to the top of Camp Sekani. The race is timed on the up only, with another 2.3 mile run or walk back to the start for the 5k, and a half mile walk/run back down for the Up Chuck Lite 1.5 miler. Pick up your race bandana back at the start at the Spokatopia festival.
Beer Garden, Music & Food
Enjoy craft beers from the Inland Northwest and beyond in the pine-shaded beer garden located in the central festival grounds while watching live music from Wyatt Wood and headliners Flying Spiders and grooving to KPND 95.3 FM in between sets. Proceeds from the beer garden and the festival benefit Evergreen East Mountain Bike Alliance – drink up and support your local mountain bike club! Several new food trucks have confirmed this year, so there will be plenty of festival grub on hand.
Additional festival parking and park and ride locations are in the works (check the website for updates), but plan on either parking at nearby Pasadena Elementary (1-mile east on Upriver Drive) and catching a van shuttle or walking/biking to Camp Sekani from there. Or take advantage of the more fun option and ride your bike to Spokatopia from your neighborhood or a nearby “park and bike” location (details coming soon at Spokatopia.com). A free, secure bike coral will be available for parking your ride while you enjoy the festivities.
Finding the Festival at Camp Sekani Park
Camp Sekani Park is located between downtown Spokane and Spokane Valley on E. Upriver Drive. For more details, visit Spokatopia.com and follow the festival on Facebook.
For more information about all festival activities, adventure clinics, parking, shuttles, park and bike locations, the band line-up, bike and paddle sports demos and other activities, keep checking back for updates at Spokatopia.com or follow the festival on Facebook. // (OTM)