Outdoors notes

Grassroots award: Chattanooga's Rock/Creek outfitter is the Grassroots Outdoor Alliance's 2011 "Retailer of the Year," chosen after nominations by the alliance's 63 vendor partners. "Rock/Creek is not only one of the best outdoor retailers in the U.S. but one of the best examples of what specialty retailing should look like," said Carol Momoda of SmartWool, one of the vendors that nominated the local company. "They always give back to their community. Rock/Creek sponsors one of the top two trail-running events in the country. Their staff gives unlimited amounts of volunteer time, coordination, resources and passion for these events."

Momoda also said Rock/Creek had unusual foresight in online retailing. The company was the Backpacker Magazine & SNEWS online retailer of the year in 2009.

Poston scholarships: Longtime local clay shooting enthusiasts and promoters Carl and Martha Poston have been honored by their children, Carl Jr. and Linda, through a scholarship fund for graduating high school seniors. Soddy-Daisy's Will Roberson, Jason Reed and Payton Pelfrey got the three $1,000 scholarships this year. Roberson, Reed and Sheldon Rodgers gave the Trojans a sixth-place finish at the recent state championships in Nashville.

Fresh air calendar

Sunset kayak tours: Thursdays through July 28, 6:30 p.m.; for adults & ages 12-over with adults; 12 participants maximum, reservations required; $35. Email or call 643-6888.

Downtown kayak adventures: Friday and July 8-9, 9 a.m., from Outdoor Chattanooga, Coolidge Park; 2-hour, beginner-friendly trips for adults & ages 8-older with adults; $35; equipment and guides provided; pre-registration required. Email or call 643-6888.

South Cumberland State Park hikes: Friday, 2:30 p.m. CDT, strenuous, rocky 3-miler from Collins West parking lot to Suter Falls and view of Collins River; Saturday, 2:30, moderate 2-miler for a swim at the Blue Hole, from Greeter Falls parking lot; July 8, 2 p.m. CDT, moderate 4-miler from Savage Gulf ranger station to Savage Falls; July 9, 8:30 a.m., strenuous 10-miler from Grundy Forest parking area to Fiery Gizzard gorge and Ravens Point.

Standup paddleboard demos: Friday, 5-8 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.-noon, L2Boards store at Market and 1st streets. Also, free paddle fit class Wednesday, 7 p.m.; reservations required. Email or call 531-7873.

3-mile open-water swim: Saturday, 7 a.m., Chickamauga Lake; kayakers needed to accompany swimmers; pancake breakfast afterward. Call Skip Brannen at 802-2407.

GPS rowing camps: Weekly through July 18, 9 a.m.-noon; grades 6-12, $145. Register at or call 634-3457.

Hiwassee River beginner kayak trip: July 9, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., directed by Outdoor Chattanooga staff. Contact Terri Chapin at or 842-6629.

McCallie School sailing camp: July 11-15, ages 8-13; 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m., Privateer Yacht Club; boys & girls; $310. Register at or call 493-5886.

Local Tennessee Ornithological Society meeting: July 14, 7 p.m., Ascension Lutheran Church, 720 S. Germantown Road. Contact David Stone at or 238-4234.

Dragon boat steering and paddling clinic: July 16-17; ages 15-older, any skill level; $25 for just paddling, $50 for steering as well. Email