I am a young outgoing up and comer in the Finger Lakes/CNY area. Five years ago a started my own business called Fuzzy Guppies, a human powered watercrafts, with my father and business partner, showcasing fishing kayaks above all. For the past 6 years we have grown the awareness of paddling and kayak fishing in the area tenfold. Holding summer youth programs, weekly lessons, and group tours, we have become the go to experts for paddling the area. Outside of the business I have also become very active in the community; starting a networking group called the Finger Lakes Young Professionals about two years ago, focusing on professional development and community enrichment. The goal for the group is to make young professionals see the benefits of remaining in the region, after they graduate, and grow together. I am simply the type of person that does not just follow along in a group, I am always out in front leading the groups I see value and importance in, which is one of the main reasons why I know I will be a valuable asset to the Jackson Kayak team.
I am worked very hard to build all aspects of paddling in our area. I organize an event every year called the “canal clean-up” we start at one point and paddle down river picking up trash from our kayaks (We have a pontoon boat follow us to hold all the trash). it is a free paddle and we cover a 20 mile stretch other the course of three weekends throughout the summer. Also, holding winter classes in local college pools, SUP yoga, an annual kayak speed race that we run called the “Seneca Monster” … and especially the kayak fishing tournaments that I hold every year at our location.
I have seen the sport continue to grow in the area, and it doesn’t appear to be slowing down at all.
Even though I have only been in the competitive kayak fishing environment for two years now, i have been kayaking fishing since I was nine years old. Growing up on the banks of the Oak Orchard River in between buffalo and Rochester, you got to be comfortable with a rod and reel at a very early age. Oak Orchard is known for its trout and salmon during their times of the year, and sitting on Lake Ontario, the water was always on your mind. However my best memory kayak fishing had to be a few years ago, when I got out with my father, he has never had any interest in kayak fishing, however, after I showed him the Jackson Cuda 14, and took some time to get him comfortable with the boat, we spent the day pulling up beautiful steelheads. It is that day that I will always remember, and tell my customers all the time. This is a sport that anyone can do, with the proper equipment, and enjoy.