The blue moon

Once in a Blue Moon

I got to do something on Friday night that only happens once in a blue moon... Literally. I went paddle boarding on Fish Lake DURING the Blue Moon. How many people can say they’ve done that?!

I got to do something on Friday night that only happens once in a blue moon... Literally. I went paddle boarding on Fish Lake DURING the Blue Moon. How many people can say they’ve done that?!

This moonlight paddle session, SUP Tour Under a Full Moon, was a special event put on by the Three Rivers Park District (Btw, SUP= Stand Up Paddleboard). You wouldn’t think you could find such outdoor adventures so close to Minneapolis, but it turns out they actually do special hiking and paddling events throughout the park district every full moon. The blue moon this July meant that they had a rare chance to do it twice in one month! I’m so glad I decided to sign up; I am a lover of all paddle sports and this experience did not disappoint.


>>The blue moon, explained


Fish Lake is a surprisingly large lake nestled into a quiet Maple Grove neighborhood. It was a perfectly serene spot for a moonlit paddle. Armed with my board, my paddle, and a glow stick tied onto my lifejacket, I was ready. A group of 15 of us plus the instructor took off from the beach at dusk. Most of this group happened to have SUP experience, but it’s not necessary! The Three Rivers instructors are happy to teach beginners, answer questions or address any fears you may have before heading out. It might look intimidating, but the boards are fairly wide and surprisingly stable—you’re not likely to fall off once you get a feel for how it handles!


>>5 tips to stand-up paddle like a pro  


My first thought as we hit the water (after much fumbling with the GoPro) was, ‘so where is this full moon?’ We rounded a bend in the lake and bam, there it was. Huge, with its reflection mirrored beautifully on the water, the moon looked like something out of a storybook.

We paddled the full length of the lake, pausing in the middle to take in the scenery, go for a dip (optional), and enjoy a surprise from our instructor, Eric. Being right on the water in the middle of the night was not something I’ve done before. It was awesome! We took our time paddling back, soaking it all in, reluctant to get off the lake.

For $20 this program was a GREAT deal (most standard board rentals in the metro cost upwards of $15/hr); I got nearly 2 hours of guided paddle time, exclusive access to the lake after hours, and a one-of-a-kind experience. I would highly recommend it to others.

Simply put, what these programs are all about is using the full moon as an excuse to get outdoors. I think it’s important once in a while to step back and appreciate the natural beauty around us, and I loved getting the chance to experience nature in such a unique way!

There are tons of opportunities for cool outdoor adventures in Maple Grove, Brooklyn Park, and Brooklyn Center. Keep an eye on the Three Rivers Park District’s website for upcoming events in our area; Elm Creek Park Reserve, Fish Lake, Eagle Lake, Coon Rapids Dam, North Mississippi, and French Regional Parks are all nearby! Reservations are often required, and make sure to do so ahead of time because events can often sell out.


>>Cool Blue Moon Photos From Around the World


About the Author
Minneapolis Northwest
  • Becca Schaar

Minneapolis Northwest native and freelance blogger 

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