Welcome to the Open Canoe Festival website

dedicated to sponsors and partners.

Europe’s Premier Canoe Rendezvous. April 25-28, 2024, Mirabel-et-Blacons, River Drôme, France.

  • A community gathering thousands of outdoor addicts everywhere in Europe. 600 participants attend the Festival.

  • A unique concept recognised throughout in Europe.

  • Extensive, high profile press coverage.

  • A great opportunity to promote your outdoor sports products.

  • Experience of successful partnership working with major companies, including Pentax Europe, Teva, « Au Vieux Campeur » outdoor shops, Tentipi Europe, Esquif Canoes (Canada)…

The goal of this website is to introduce the Open Canoe Festival (OCF) to you, and above all to convince you to become our partner. We propose several partnership levels. All of them have the same goal : to allow you to promote your brand or company and help you to sell your products. To do so, we propose several marketing tools and we describe precisely our public. Our participants are your clients. This website is designed to be clear and precise, so it’s important to know that whilst the OCF is naturally dealing with the open canoe world, it also deals with outdoor products and services. The OCF participants and its 5000 paddlers community represents thousands of outdoor enthusiasts interested in camping, photography, outdoor gear, carrying solutions, waterproof bags and systems, outdoor cooking, bushcraft and much else. This section is a bit long as we want you to have a precise picture of the OCF. The other sections go straight to the point!

Europe’s Premier Canoe Rendezvous.

The Open Canoe Festival is today the biggest rendezvous dedicated to canoe lovers from Europe’s four corners. During 3 days, the charming village of Mirabel-et-Blacons (located between Lyon and Avignon, 30 Km from Valence and the Rhône Valley) becomes the European Canoe capital. The Festival is organized in a charming 3 star campsite located on the bank of the Drome river. All the meals and parties are sheltered under a beautiful giant marquee giving a very special look and atmosphere. The Festival offers 3 days of technical and safety clinics, boat tests, manufacturer booths, free tasting of local cuisine, parties, a big prize lottery and of course some fantastic runs on the turquoise waters of the Drôme river, which offers more than 30 Km of easy and scenic paddling at the gates of the Provence area. The 2023 schedule brings a lot of new workshops dedicated to many outdoor themes and activities : outdoor cooking, the art of bivouacking, no trace camping, river fauna, outdoor first aid basics, photography, relaxation, canoe fishing, ropecraft and knots, fire camps, camping tips and tricks…

The OCF : the perfect place to promote canoe and outdoor gear.

  • 5000 different visitors in 10 years, 600 participants expected in 2024,
  • 12 countries, 30% foreign participation,
  • participants’ profile : families with 2 kids, middle-aged, ABC1 socio-economic groups,
  • 3 days in the same site where participants really have the time to test the products and talk to the exhibitors,
  • workshops and general communication encouraging the participants to invest in the right gear,
  • efficient promotion and communication tools : outdoor and paddling press magazines (Canoë Kayak Magazine France, Kanu Mag Germany, The Paddler (UK), Wider Mag France, Carnets d’Expé France…), local press (newspapers, radios), presence in numerous european web forums, Facebook page, logos, t-shirts…
  • a dynamic website promoting exhibitors and partners,
  • a 4500 contacts mailing list,
  • great marketing and communication tools : logos, T-shirts, goodies, press releases, press, TV and radio reports…

The Open Canoe Festival values.

The Open Canoe Festival is organized by sport journalists and communication professionals who are enthusiast canoe and river lovers. Beyond their passion for the sport itself, they also want to promote the friendly atmosphere and the amazing landscapes of the Drôme valley. During these 3 days, everything is organized so the participants relax and feel at home. The OCF main organizer is Paul Villecourt, photo-reporter specializing in outdoor and adventure sports, author of the book “Guide du Canoë en France” (5000 copies already sold). In 2017, he paddled through France, from East to West, in a canoe (La Grande Traversée).

The 2024 schedule.

  • Thursday April 25 (evening) : registrations and pick up of the Goodies Bag containing T-shirt, festival tumbler, sponsors brochures and stickers. Free tasting of “Clairette de Die”, famous local sparkling wine. Outdoor and adventure movies.
  • Friday April 26 : booths, canoe and gear tests, free runs of the Drôme river, free shuttle service, workshops, meal and concert under the giant marquee.
  • Saturday April 27 : Drôme descent (28 Km), free shuttle service, meal, party and big prize lottery, fire camp by the river.
  • Sunday April 28 : booths, canoe and gear tests, free runs of the Drôme river, workshops, free shuttle service, picnic by the river (tasting of local cuisine).

The Festival entry fee is 150 Euros (100 for the kids and the non paddling persons) and includes : T-shirt, goodies bag containing the partners brochures and a free poster, free shuttle services, 3 meals, Saturday night party and concert, participation to the big prize lottery, numerous workshops, canoe clinics for beginners and advanced levels, kayak clinics for kids, gear tests.

2024 workshops.

Outdoor cooking, food dehydration, fire and knots, canoe technique and safety, bivouac / camp / camping gear, white water sports photography, kayak clinics for kids, river Stand Up Paddle demonstrations and tests, canoe fishing, outdoor first aid basics, relaxation, river fauna (beavers)…

More informations on the OCF main website : www.opencanoefestival.com