NEWMARKET — They say that standup paddleboarding has one of the quickest learning curves of all recreational activities and that was certainly on display last Thursday.

A dozen somewhat tentative and wobbly-kneed Hampton residents disappeared down the winding Lamprey River, only to reappear less than two hours later standing tall and with a new favorite mode of transportation.

“Just seeing people light up and catch that spark is honestly why I do it,” said Shaun Quinn of the Wandering Paddler in Rye.

Wandering Paddler in Rye and Hampton Recreation have teamed up for the paddleboard course that runs for four Thursdays in June. Those participating will get the chance to effortlessly glide through some of the most scenic fresh and salt water on the Seacoast with Quinn and his son, Xander, right by their side. The course sold out quickly and Hampton Recreation’s Beth Dupell says there are already plans to team up with Quinn’s company to offer another course this summer.

Olivia Levitsky, Emily Dyer, Mary Winter and Maddie Jasina were all smiles at the Lamprey River boat launch in Newmarket, one of four locations for the new paddleboard program that is being offered by the Hampton Recreation Department.

Stained feet? What’s happening to southern Maine beachgoers? DEP officials investigating

Hampton Recreation outdoor offerings

Dupell says the new offering, much like the department’s thriving adult kayak programs, is another example of the department’s attempt to add more non-traditional outdoor offerings to the town.

“I think COVID opened us up to markets that we never had programming for before,” Dupell noted. “We also got the sense that families are a little bored with the pre-packaged, canned parks and recreation programming.”