Flotilla, 100 strong, conquers Beaver Creek

Sandra ClarkFeature, Powell

It was everything organizers hoped for, and nobody drowned. Beaver Creek hosted 100 or so floaters and paddlers on Aug. 4 at the Grand Opening Flotilla to launch a new section of the Beaver Creek Water Trail. Steven Goodpaster said he hopes it’s the first of many adventures on Beaver Creek. “This is but one exceptional event along a continuum of excellence.”

Bill Weigel said the creek is aptly named. Now 80, he grew up in the log cabin on Emory Road near Powell Middle School. He remembers playing in the creek and watching beavers. “I could outrun a black snake,” he said, speculating he was invited to lead the flotilla because he’s “the oldest guy still standing.

He’s lived in Powell so long that his family’s address was just Emory Road, Powell Station, and their phone number was 140. The only businesses were Groner’s store and Arnold’s Garage. “I loved Hobe Rhodes at Groner’s. He would buy produce from me – it was the last 100 percent profit I ever got.”

Then Weigel got serious for a minute. “I’m impressed with all the organization and hard work that went into (the flotilla). The future of Powell is in very good hands.”

Well said, Bill. Seeing young guys like Steve Goodpaster and Justin Bailey with their kids was special. The Enhance Powell committee which they head has now opened two absolutely free and close-to-home places to play – the Beaver Creek water trail and the disc golf course at Powell Station Park (behind the splash pad).

Roy Arthur (center) stands in the crowd as Carol Evans praises his work to restore the creek. “Today fulfills a 20-year dream for Roy,” she said.

Newly elected county commissioner Larsen Jay takes a paddleboard down Beaver Creek.

Beaver Creek is easy to navigate once the obstructions were removed.

Larry Smith, president of the Powell Business & Professional Association, and state Rep. Bill Dunn join the flotilla. They traveled from Powell High School to the new Weigel’s on Clinton Highway in about one hour.

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