A Rowing Season to Remember

We’d like to take a moment today to celebrate our adult rowing community. Despite a pandemic and strict new safety guidelines, our adult rowers were able to have a shortened yet wonderful season. Whether it was for Tuesdays’ advanced Rowing for Racing club, Thursdays’ relaxed Community Rowing club, or special outings, this group found a way to exercise outside together, welcome new rowers, and revel in the beauty of Lake Champlain and local waterways. We couldn’t be prouder to have them representing the Museum’s Champlain Longboats community out on the water.

Scroll down for an overview of this year’s adult rowing season and photos from rowers. Click on images in each photo gallery to see the full, larger image. Many thanks to Ben Mayock, Andrew Rainville, Lisa Percival, Emily Weber, and Holly Weber for sharing their photos from the season!

June: Season Starts!

While our rowing season usually starts in May, rowers had to wait until June for the Stay-Home Advisory to be lifted and COVID-19 outdoor sports safety protocols from the state. We developed new safety guidelines with the primary goal to ensure the safety of rowers and coxswains. Once we had a good system in place and rowers felt comfortable about their health and safety, these awesome people were out on the water as much as possible!

August 22: Skiff Trip to Lake Dunmore

In August, a group of our adult rowers took the Museum’s St. Ayles Skiffs to Lake Dunmore to showcase open-water rowing and these unique skiffs on a different lake. 

September 5: Row to Westport

An annual trip, rowers journeyed across the lake to Westport Marina for lunch before returning to the Museum campus.

October 1: The Annual Moonlight Row

An annual favorite, the moonlight row is held in October on the night of a full moon. Rowers waited until slightly before dusk to row across the lake to a lean-to site. A bonfire was lit as the group watched the setting sun, snacking on individually-packed snacks, and finally enjoyed the moonrise. It was large and bright over calm waters. As one of our rowers says “People were transfixed by the quiet, the beauty, the sense of peace. There was a palpable sense of community and hope.” With the lake well-lit, headlamps and boat lights on, the group returned back across the lake to the Museum campus.

November 7: The last row of the season

To mark the end of the season, rowers met and rowed 7 miles on Otter Creek; from Tom’s Marina to Lake Champlain and back. The weather was uncannily perfect for November, with temperatures in the mid-60’s, sunny skies, and little wind. As our rowing liaison and all-star, Lisa, tells us:

“Saturday was a day for celebration and joy. All summer we rowed every week and we have all been safe and healthy. We are so thankful for this opportunity to row, to be together, to talk and laugh. And we are equally grateful to the staff, students, and volunteers who have built these beautiful boats. Winter is coming but we each have these special memories to carry us through the dark nights ahead and the promise of a new season next spring!”

Have a great winter, rowers, we look forward to seeing you back out on the water in the spring!