A perk for registering for the symposium is being able to browse the Community Center all weekend long. What is the Community Center you ask? During the symposium all of the paddling industry’s leading manufacturer’s will be displaying a wide variety of kayaking related apparel and equipment. Each vendor will have sales reps on hand to answer any questions you may have regarding their product. We just got word that Kokatat will be joining the party again this year!
In 1971, outdoor enthusiast and retailer Steve O’Meara decided to start making gear to support his habit of getting outside into the spectacular landscape that is Northern California: Redwoods, rivers, mountains and the sea. Some might call that heaven, most call it Humboldt County. We’re inclined to think they’re one and the same.
Following the introduction of a new waterproof fabric called GORE-TEX®, Steve decided to focus his company on one category of products: paddlesports apparel and gear. The company evolved to what we know today as “Kokatat”, a regional Native American word for “Into the Water”. Highly appropriate since Kokatat garments are meant for total immersion. Go ahead, pull that gasket over your head and be sure to zip that relief zipper all the way closed before you jump in.
41 years later Kokatat still thrives in Arcata, CA. You can walk in the front door of the factory and hear the hum of sewing machines, bringing you the most complete line of paddling apparel and personal flotation devices (PFDs) available. Adam in design can tell you about last week’s killer surf or you can chat with Matt in marketing about the CFS last weekend on the Trinity River. You can even talk to one of our gear artisans about the finer intricacies of waterproof seam taping, if you’re into that sort of thing. Have a GORE-TEX® drysuit from the late twentieth century? Chris in our repair department will test it for leaks and refurbish it for you.
We strive to make the most comfortable, durable, and safe products possible at Kokatat. From our GORE-TEX® dry suits that carry a lifetime warranty or rescue PFDs worn by guides worldwide, to a new paddler’s first splash-top, we have you covered. Safety is the key for our paddle sports customers and for the Military, Search and Rescue, and US Coast Guard units we outfit. The water can be unpredictable at times. It’s our goal to remove the worries of the elements so you can head out with confidence.
41 years into the business, we remain committed to manufacturing the majority of our gear in Humboldt County. Named the 2010 Arcata Green Business of the Year, our company provides an established platform of green practices, social equity and economic vitality to the region. Our recent installation of one of the largest solar photovoltaic systems in the region powers much of our factory.
At The Symposium
At the symposium we are so fortunate to have Kokatat representative John Horsnell joining us and staffing the Kokatat booth to answer any questions participants might have about the Kokatat equipment. This is a rare opportunity to get all “touchy feely” with a lot of different paddling gear and clothing that you might not see in your local paddling shop.
Dry Suit Demos
Once again our friends from Kokatat have been so kind to send a fleet of drysuits to the symposium for participants to try! This is a special opportunity to try on, or demo a dry suit for one of your classes. Have a rolling class? Stay nice and dry with these fantastic dry suits! We encourage everyone to try one of these suits on sometime during the symposium so stop by the Community Center to get a custom fit and demo one during weekend!
Be sure to stop by the Kokatat booth to say hello and to see what is going to be the hot Kokatat item at this year’s symposium. A big thank you goes out to John, and Kokatat for being a gold level sponsor at this years symposium!