NewsCovering Colorado


Royal Gorge Whitewater Festival kicks off in Cañon City

The Royal Gorge Whitewater Festival draws thousands of people to Cañon City every summer
Posted at 6:54 PM, Jul 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-23 21:05:44-04

CAÑON CITY — As the summer if no more COVID-19 restrictions continues in Cañon City, the popularity of tradition festivals is sky rocketing.

“We have just been fielding questions left and right, far more than we ever have. As the event coordinator, I’ve never been contacted so many times before the event and this is my third time doing it," said Chris Moffett, the Whitewater Event Coordinator.

According to Moffett, organizer did not even know if a 2021 festival would be possible until about five months prior, saying "That is why we are doing it late in July this year, but it’s turning out to be a really nice weekend". The festival would usually take place back in May.

The event usually takes an entire year's worth of planning, according to Moffett. He says the volunteers who have been working "tirelessly" made the last-minute plans possible.

Thanks to this year's festival, 12-year old Mason Lenard is getting his first opportunity to participate in the surfing competition.

“My dad, he does it a lot and he’s been trying to get me to do it for a while so I really wanted to do it," said Lenard.

“He’s really proud of me and he hopes I continue doing this!”

To help kids like Lenard "continue doing it", groups like the Royal Gorge River Initiative Organization (RIO) hope to promote keeping Colorado's waters clean. They are one of the three non-profits who receive proceeds from the Royal Gorge Whitewater Festival.

“Leave no trace, you go anywhere - Pick it up after you, even if it’s a little orange peel or a tiny piece of a Pringle. You don’t want to leave that behind, you never know what may happen," said Moffett, who also helps run Royal Gorge RIO.

A schedule of the weekends events can be found here.

The entry fee is $5.00 and children under the age of 12 can attend for free.

Below is a map of the event space.

Events last through 8:30 pm on July 24, 2021.
Map of the 2021 Royal Gorge Whitewater Festival in Cañon City