Riverfront Fort Wayne promises every Fort Wayne resident and visitor an always-evolving opportunity to connect with nature, culture and community. We are excited to announce that between now and September, there are over 200 Riverfront Fort Wayne activities for children and adults scheduled, including boat tours, boating classes, birdwatching, walking tours and paddle socials.
Riverfront Boat Tours
Thursdays and Sundays, June-September
3, 5, 6:15, 7:30 pm
Riverfront Fort Wayne Boat Tours are your chance to learn more about our city through its riverfront. Relax and enjoy the scenery on one of our themed boat tours; themes include Riverfront development, ecology, and history. Several departures are scheduled most Sundays and Thursdays from June through September. Tours depart from the boat dock at Guldlin Park or Headwaters Park (location and parking information provided to registrants one week before tour). No food or beverages are permitted on the tours. Make your reservations online at www.FortWayneParks.org or by calling (260) 427-6000 at least one week in advance. Ages 10+. Limit 10 people per tour. Fee: $12 per person. In the event of inclement weather, please check the Riverfront Fort Wayne Facebook page for cancellations.
Storytime on the Riverfront
Mondays in June: 4, 11, 18, 25
Mondays in July: 2, 9, 23, 30
Mondays in August: 6, 13, 20, 27
10:30 am, Lawton Park
Storytime on the Riverfront returns this summer! Join the Allen County Public Library and Riverfront Fort Wayne as we enjoy children’s literature along our majestic rivers. Storytime will take place each Monday at 10:30am in June, July, and August (except Mon., July 16) in Lawton Park.
Riverfront Citizen Science: Birdwatching on Our Urban Rivers
Sundays, June 10, July 8, August 12, September 9, Lawton Park Trailhead, Clinton & 4th Streets, FREE
2 -3: Walking
3:15 pm – 4:30 pm: Bike Riding
Riverfront Fort Wayne is once again excited to partner with Fort Wayne Trails to offer Birdwatching on Our Urban Rivers. New this summer is a partnership with the Cornell University Ornithology Lab. We will be collecting data to help track urban birds. This guided urban hike is open to all ages and experience levels. We will show you the ropes while you enjoy the diverse bird life along our rivers—you might even see a bald eagle! We will spend the first 10 minutes of each program learning some basics about birdwatching and how to use binoculars. Bike riders should arrive a few minutes early, and be ready to ride at 3 pm to ensure timeliness. This program is free and no reservations are necessary. In the event of inclement weather, please check the Riverfront Fort Wayne Facebook page for cancellations.
Intro to Dragon Boat Racing
Tuesdays and Thursdays, June 5 – 14, 6 pm, FREE Training
Experience the magic of dragon boat racing first hand with this introductory paddle course. Whether you are paddling with a team or as an individual you will have the opportunity to feel the thrill, teamwork and adrenaline all while enjoying the interaction and community spirit within the boat. This 46’ long boat seats 20 paddlers, plus a drummer and a steersman. Free training will include an on-shore introduction to paddling and boat safety and then an on-water paddling session. No previous experience is required. Life jackets and paddles are provided. Ages 14+. Registration deadlines: 6/1, 6/3, 6/7, and 6/8, respectively. Register at www.FortWayneParks.org Min. 8. Max. 20. Class meets at Guldlin Park located at Van Buren Street and Michaels Avenue.
Intro to Canoe and Kayaking
Sunday, June 10, 2 pm, Code: 900705-A1
Thursday, July 26, 6:30 pm, Code: 900705-A2
In this class you will learn how to enter and exit your kayak properly from a dock. You will also learn how to properly handle your paddle, different types of paddle strokes and how to maneuver your kayak. Basic safety instructions will also be covered. No previous experience is required. Life jackets and paddles are provided. Ages 18+. Registration deadlines: 6/3 and 7/21. Fee without kayak rental: $25 / Fee with kayak rental: $40. Location: Fort Wayne Outfitters, 1004 Cass St. Register at www.FortWayneParks.org.
Riverfront Cleanups (Riparian Management)
Saturdays, June 16, July 7, August 4, 8:30 am – Noon
Bloomingdale Park, Sherman Blvd.
Volunteers will clip honeysuckle limbs from bushes, cut down the remaining trunks with handsaws and carry the brush to an area in the park. All tools and work gloves will be provided. The honeysuckle stems are not prickly and the brush isn’t heavy. This is a family-friendly activity so children are welcome, too. Please dress for the weather! Close-toed shoes, like tennis shoes, are recommended. Individuals, as well as groups of 4-40 volunteers, are encouraged to sign up for one of the scheduled Riverfront cleanups, or to schedule an alternate date, by calling Dan Wire at 260-427-6408.
Riverfront Walking Tours
June 30, July 28, August 25, 10am, FREE Admission
Tours depart from the Lawton Park trailhead located on 4th Street
Are you in the mood to get out, stretch your legs and learn more about Riverfront development? We will be leading free monthly walking tours along the Riverfront to share more information about the development phases and plans, riparian management, future programs and events, and how to get more involved. Each tour is approximately 45 minutes in length. Wear comfortable, close-toed shoes and weather-appropriate clothing. All ages welcome. The tours are free and no registration is necessary. Contact Megan Butler at 427-6248 for more information. In the event of inclement weather, please check the Riverfront Fort Wayne Facebook page for cancellations.
Panoramic Riverfront Tour on Sweet Breeze
Saturday, July 21, 4 or 5 pm
Sunday, August 12, 1 or 2 pm
Learn about Riverfront development from the river’s viewpoint, riding Sweet Breeze –Fort Wayne’s authentic canal boat replica. Meet the Riverfront team, get a sense of scale and location, ask questions about the future of our waterways, and receive a little Riverfront SWAG. The 45-minute tours will depart from the Headwaters Park West dock four times this summer. Riders will learn about Fort Wayne’s past while sharing our rivers’ possibilities. This experience is fully accessible. Reservation deadlines: July 14 and August 8. Fee: $30 adult, $15 children 10 and under. Location: Headwaters Park West Dock. Register at www.FortWayneParks.org
Riverfront Fort Wayne Paddle Socials
Paddle socials are a fun way to meet new people and learn more about our rivers while canoeing or kayaking on our own three downtown bodies of water. We will host three paddle socials each week on Sundays, Wednesdays and Fridays (with some exceptions) from June through September. Each social will have a different theme and purpose. Our staff will lead the group on an approximately one-hour paddle outing. Each participant will receive Riverfront swag and a snack and drink at the end. All socials meet and depart from Fort Wayne Outfitters at 1004 Cass Street. Participants may bring their own kayak or canoe, in which case the program fee is $10. Or, participants may rent a single kayak for an additional $15. (If desiring to rent a canoe or tandem kayak, please call Megan Butler at 260-427-6248 to make arrangements.) Ages 18+. See www.FortWayneParks.org for paddle social days/times and to register. Registration deadlines are one week prior to each social. Min. 5. Max. 30. Call Megan Butler at 260-427-6248 for more information.
4th Annual Fort Wayne Dragon Boat Races
presented by Parkview Regional Medical Center
Saturday, June 23, 8 am – 4 pm
Athlete’s Village, Headwaters Park West Amphitheatre
Race Course: Harrison Street Bridge to Headwaters Park West Amphitheatre
Riverfront Fort Wayne and Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation invite you to the 4th Annual Fort Wayne Dragon Boat Races! Dragon Boat racing originates from China and features 21-person teams paddling down the rivers towards victory as the drums beat out their frenzied rhythm. This thrilling, family-friendly spectacle offers something for everyone with an Athlete’s Village for socializing, local food vendors, free children’s activities, and of course, the races! Team registration is underway. For questions regarding team rules and regulations and to create your team, contact Megan Butler at 427-6248 or megan.butler. All events at the race site are free and open to the public; registration fees apply for competing teams. This event is rain or shine. The FW Dragon Boat Races are presented by Parkview Regional Medical Center and sponsored by Steel Dynamics Inc., Lincoln Financial Corp, ABC21 WPTA and Majic 95.1 Visit www.RiverfrontFortWayne.org/dragonboatraces for additional information.
Young Paddlers Club
Riverfront Fort Wayne and the Northeast Indiana Water Trails are proud to partner on the Little Paddlers Club, new to our rivers this year! The Club offers several opportunities for children to engage with the rivers over the summer break. Little Paddlers will choose five activities to complete. Once completed, Paddlers will earn a badge, discounted boat rental at local liveries, and admission to the end of year Little Paddlers party. Examples of qualifying Riverfront Fort Wayne activities include: paddle socials, dragon boating, boat tours, and walking tours. Visit www.NEIWaterTrails.com for more information and to get signed up!
Star Parties on the Riverfront
June 8, 10pm; July 13, 10pm; August 10, 9:30pm; September 14, 9pm
Meet near playground in Lawton Park, Clinton & 4th Streets
Riverfront Fort Wayne is excited to partner with the Fort Wayne Astronomical Society to present Star Parties on the Riverfront. School’s out for the summer, so stay up past your bedtime and join us as we view stars and planets right in downtown Fort Wayne. FWAS will provide telescopes and show you how to use them. You will receive a light snack and free Riverfront SWAG. This program is free and open to all ages. With a playground and free parking nearby, this is a program for everyone! Call or email Megan Butler at 260-427-6248 or megan.butler for more information. In the event of inclement weather, please check the Riverfront Fort Wayne Facebook page for cancellations.
Be a Tourist In Your Own Hometown
Sunday, September 9, noon – 5pm
Riverfront Fort Wayne invites you to learn more about your rivers and the exciting project happening right in your hometown. We will be doing short 15-20 minute walking tours along the riverfront. You will learn about the exciting history, wildly diverse ecology, and ongoing visionary Phase 1 construction plans of your riverfront, as well as plans for future phases. We will also talk about upcoming events and programs and share how you can get more involved with your rivers, all while enjoying the gorgeous vistas along our flowing waterways. You will leave inspired by the future of your city and see why we’re: Always moving.
Riverfront Film Series
July 28, August 24, September 29
Calling all cinephiles and good-time-lovers! Riverfront Fort Wayne is thrilled to again offer the Riverfront Film Series—which takes place in the great outdoors. Grab some friends and join us for three throwback movies this summer. Each movie features dinner or snacks and several activities related to the movie’s theme. Ages and prices vary. Riverfront staff are also on hand to keep you updated on the progress of this project that is Always Moving. Call or email Megan Butler at 260-427-6248 or megan.butler for more information. In the event of inclement weather, please check the Riverfront Fort Wayne Facebook page for cancellations.
Young Naturalist Series
June 16, July 21, August 18, September 15, 10 -11am
Meet near playground in Lawton Park, Clinton & 4th Streets
Join us on the third Saturday of the month for our new Young Naturalist Series for an hour of learning, crafts and fun themed snacks. We’ll start the summer off by celebrating National River Month on June 16 learning about river biomes. On July 21, we’ll dive into the world of busy beavers. The August 18th class will be about our feathered friends—birds. We’ll finish off the summer on September 15th learning about bugs. All these river themed classes start at 10 am and will certainly appeal to your young naturalist. With free parking and a playground nearby, we know your entire family will have fun! The program is limited to 20 children plus their grown-ups. Deadlines to sign up are June 8, July 13, August 10, and September 7, respectively. This program is free, but you must sign up with Kim Weldon at kim.weldon. In the event of inclement weather, please check the Riverfront Fort Wayne Facebook page for cancellations.