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Kayaks on the St. Joseph River with the Ron Venderly Family Pedestrian bridge in the background.

News Release

Purdue Fort Wayne invites students to make it a ‘Day on the River’

When your university in the Midwest sits next to a body of water, you take advantage of it each fall for as long as Mother Nature allows. That’ll be the general idea for Purdue University Fort Wayne students experiencing a “Day on the River” Thursday from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

As most locals know, the river that’s nearest and dearest to Mastodons is the St. Joseph, which forms the western edge of the university’s main campus. Much of the action for this event will launch at the base of the Ron Venderly Family Bridge and parking lot 10.  

Activities in and out of the water have been planned so those who would rather keep their feet on terra firma can still enjoy the scene. Highlights of the day are expected to be kayak races among various PFW leaders, airboat rides, biking, and food trucks.  

A full schedule of activities and newsgathering opportunities, weather permitting, include:

  • Food truck sales; free food for first 500 students | 11:30 a.m.–3 p.m.
  • Tie-dye projects, lawn games | 11:30 a.m.
  • Cabinet member kayak races | 11:45 a.m.
  • PFW cheerleaders arrive at the bridge | 11:45 a.m.
  • Dean kayak race | noon
  • Yoga classes | noon and 1:30 p.m.
  • Airboat river tours | noon-3 p.m.
  • Bike rides courtesy of Fort Wayne Outfitters & Bike Depot | 12:30 p.m.
  • Coaches from Mastodon Athletics kayak race | 12:30 p.m.
  • Chancellor Ron Elsenbaumer airboat ride | 12:45 p.m.
  • Student kayaking opportunities | 1–3 p.m.

Click here for a campus map.

“A Day on the River” is the first of six events being planned and hosted by the PFW Division of Enrollment Management and the Student Experience’s 14-member engagement board during the 2023–24 academic year.