On Saturday June 29th, community from around Vermont and New England gathered at the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum to raise money and awareness for teen suicide prevention this past Saturday. This first “Hope for TomorROW” rowathon was a collaboration between Project HOePpnEr and the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum in honor of Paul Hoeppner, a Hinesburg resident and Champlain Valley Union High School rower who took his life last fall. Paul was a devoted member of the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum rowing program for all of his high school career at CVUHS.
Over 200 participants and over 100 spectators showed up to support this life saving adventure, raising a total of over $18,000 for the cause. Participants rowed a total of two nautical miles to New York and back coming up with creative team names and remembering Paul along the way. That morning, the forecast looked forbidding, but the thunderclouds miraculously held off, exceeding all expectations.
When all made it back to shore, prizes were awarded to the most successful fundraisers and the teams with the most team spirit. The Lake Champlain Maritime Museum is honored to have been a part of such an incredible, community event.