2023 Wilderness Canoe Symposium

The 38th Wilderness and Canoe Symposium will take place online, for the third year in a row, between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. on 15th February 2023. Registration is open and required to attend. Details at www.wcsymposium.com

Two dramatic spikes have informed our decision to continue online. First, Toronto is seeing a concerning spike in hospitalizations due to COVID, despite our access to 4th vaccinations. While we cannot predict the future since our crystal ball is backordered (darn you, supply-chain challenges), we can surmise from past years that February will see the second cyclical spike of cases. Second, we are on the uncomfortable edge of a spike in the cost of gas, flights, accommodation, rental spaces, coffee, and batteries for the slide changer. Until both stabilize, our Zoom Auditorium offers us safer and more affordable space to gather and share our stories.

This year’s online event continues to feature:
• Free admission;
• Scintillating and diverse paddling stories from across North America and around the world;
• The usual comforts of your favourite chair, stock-piled snacks and beverages tailored to your own tastes, and no lineups in the
2023WCS bathroom; and
• Low-emissions travel to the Symposium, and increased access to those who would not be able to join due to the inconvenient location of massive oceans, unrelenting work loads, and the dynamics of life.

At this juncture, we are looking at creating a ‘long runway’ to explore the possibility of returning to in-person event in 2024 or possibly launching our second hybrid event (the first being the phenomenal presentation in 2019 from Lesley Johnson (ON) and Kristen Tanche (NWT): “I hold Dehcho in My Heart”.) Online survey was launched to solicit the input from over 1,500 past WCS participants to gain more insights into the audience’s appetite for in-person gathering. You can read more details on www.wcsymposium.com.

On the program side, the filmmaker Chris Forde will introduce us to his new documentary film “Paddle to the Amazon” and a story of father and son’s incredible 12,181 mile canoe trip from Winnipeg to the mouth of the Amazon River.

Michael Peake will talk about the final book in his Hide-Away-Canoe-Club trilogy “The Coppermine and Beyond”.

Program updates will be posted on WCS website.

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