Every year, mesothelioma survivors and supporters kayak the Hudson River to fundraise for mesothelioma research. Kayaking for Meso is a non-profit organization dedicated to raising awareness and supporting research for mesothelioma. This year’s event is on September 9th.

Kayaking 4 Meso 2017

kayaking 4 meso logoKayaking 4 Meso is an annual kayaking event to raise funds for mesothelioma research. The first year of the event in 2011 there were only 3 people kayaking. Last year there were over 200 paddlers. This year they hope for 300.

The event attracts supporters and also survivors. Mesothelioma survivors are able to ride on a pontoon boat alongside the kayakers. Last year there were 7 survivors participating.


Participants all get color-coded t-shirts. Survivors get one color, family members get another, and supporters get another. This way, everyone at the event knows a little about the people they meet and can socialize about their shared experiences.

Kayakers on the Hudson River during Kayaking 4 Meso

The paddle is about 8 miles from Stillwater, NY to Halfmoon, NY. It goes through 3 locks and takes about 3 and a half hours. After the long paddle there is a party with food and refreshments.

The money raised by the fundraiser will benefit the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation. Last year Kayaking 4 Meso raised $23,000.

Inspiration for the Cause

Mark Wells organized the event in honor of this daugher Linda. Linda Wells was diagnosed with peritoneal mesothelioma at the unusually young age of 16 years old. Most mesothelioma patients are much older because of the latency period associated with the disease. It often takes 20-40 years for mesothelioma to develop after asbestos exposure.

“I always wanted to raise awareness but I didn’t know where to start or what to do, and I had a couple months earlier started kayaking myself. So, I thought that might be a good venue to create,” Mark Wells said in a recent interview.

Now, Linda has been diagnosed with mesothelioma for about half her life. Last year she was feeling well enough to participate in the paddle and was able to complete the entire course. She has been through several rounds of chemotherapy, several major surgeries, and has had two HIPEC treatments.

How to Join the Kayakers

If you live near the event or want to travel to it, here is some information on how to participate:

Mark hopes the kayakers will register for the event as early as possible. Registration is $30 in advance and then $40 after August 18th. There will be kayaks for rent at the marina but you must make a reservation for them in advance.

The event will take place on September 9th, 2017 from 7:30AM-1:00PM.

Event Start

The event begins at Admiral’s Marina in Stillwater, NY where the kayaks will launch.

  • Check-in time: 7:30-9:15 AM
  • Kayak launch: 9:15-9:30 AM

Finish Line & Festivities

Kayakers finish at Halfmoon Lighthouse Park in Halfmoon, NY where there will be a party including food and refreshments.

  • Finish paddling: 1:00PM (approximately)
  • Group photo: 1:30PM
  • Festivities: 1:00-4:00PM

If you have any more questions please contact Mark Wells at markwells@Kayaking4Meso.org.

    Sources & Author

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About the Writer, Jamie Iovino

Jamie Iovino is the senior writer at Mesothelioma Guide. She creates and edits pages to make sure mesothelioma patients and their families receive the newest and most accurate information about mesothelioma.