March 26, 2013
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The Camp Verde Chamber of Commerce and the Verde River Nature Organization organized the inaugural 2013 Verde River Runoff Race & Festival, held on Saturday, March 23, and sponsored by Salt River Project and the Nature Conservancy. The 10-mile canoe and kayak race down the Verde River started at 10 a.m. at White Bridge in Camp Verde and finished at Beasley Flat. There were approximately 125 craft entered in race that was formally known as the Verde River Canoe Challenge. While there were some serious competitors on Saturday, most entrants were participating for a fun morning of communal boating down the Verde. As the final canoes and kayaks were being launched at White Bridge, the Verde River Runoff Festival was just beginning at the community field in downtown Camp Verde. The festival featured many vendors, family fun activities, community art, and live music by bluegrass band, Just 4 Mama, and reggae artists, the Chromatics. As an adjunct to the Verde River Runoff Race, the festival hopes to bring more visitors downtown and expand the race to a daylong event.