BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Paddleboarding on the Inner Harbor may have been a pipe dream in the past but it is now a reality.

This is something Jessie Benson has dreaming of since she opened B-more Sup seven years ago.

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“You really get the heartbeat of the city in the morning,” Benson said.

The dedicated group gets up with the sun.

“It truly is charming, it’s magical and you just get the sense of belonging towards it,” said Emily Knaus, one of the group’s instructors.

Paddleboarding at the harbor required testing the waters, monitoring its conditions and working with people like Adam Lindquist at the Waterfront Partnership.

“There is pollution that comes off of our land and ends up in the harbor. That’s a fact of life, but we have been working over the last 10 years to improve those conditions,” said Lindquist.

Those conditions for recreation have improved from a mere 50% in 2009 to 85% in 2019.

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“People are ready. The water is ready. The city is ready. Now is the time to try this paddleboarding here on the harbor,” Benson said.

It’s thanks to things like Mr. Trash Wheel and major repairs to the city’s sewer system.

“Because it’s an active waterway, it’s an active ecosystem, water quality changes over time,” Lindquist added.

Sometimes, after it rains, pollution moves from land to sea and it takes time to dissipate.

But when you’re actually on the paddleboard, you’ll probably turn your attention to the iconic Domino Sugar sign, the National Aquarium and the nature that surrounds Charm City.

“I think this is just the beginning and my dream is in five years for it to be a very regular thing that everyone who lives in Baltimore is just out there paddling a couple of days a week,” said Benson.

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B-more Sup suggests that if you’re a beginner at this it’s a good idea to take a lesson at one of its other Baltimore locations so you get a feel for the water and are comfortable on the board.

Rachel Menitoff