Minneapolis Rowing Club Member Handbook updated July 2003 Inside: General Information History Board of Governors Programs What to Know While on Land What to Know on the Water Regattas Ad. I: River Traffic Map Ad. II: By-laws General Information The Minneapolis Rowing Club (MRC) is a member of the United States Rowing Association and the Northwestern International Rowing Association. The club also has an affiliation with Macalester College, the University of St. Thomas, and the University of Minnesota. The MRC admits members of any race, color, sexual orientation, religion, gender, and national or ethnic origin. Location Underneath the Lake Street bridge off of West River Road in Minneapolis. Mailing Address PO Box 583102 Minneapolis, MN 55458-3102 Boathouse phone: 612.729.1541 Be sure to check out the club website, www.mplsrowing.org, for current information, including: • updates on cold-water rowing • contact information for committees, coaches, and captains • regatta results Waivers All rowers MUST sign a waiver before rowing for the year/season. Waivers are good for the calendar year only; a new one must be signed every year. Not only are waivers essential for the club's insurance criteria, but they are used to update the club's membership information. Dues Dues are based on member type and are due early in the year. Paying dues on time not only saves the treasurer from having to contact tardy members directly, but also allows for the purchase of equipment in time for the start of the rowing season. If you have questions about your membership dues or other fees, please contact the treasurer. Member Type Condition Season Cost Due Date Regular 18 years of age or older Full year $300 1/3 on Feb. 1st 2/3 on June 1st Novice 18 years of age or older and Remainder of 200 Upon complete a Learn-to-Row (LTR) the year after completing session in the current year LTR LTR Full Year Student 19-24 years old, full time Full year 200 1/2 on Feb. 1st student 1/2 on June 1st Summer Only Student 19-24 years old, full time June 1st – 130 June 1st student August 31st Member Type Condition Season Cost Due Date Junior Under 19 years old. 18 year- Full year 130 Feb. 1st olds must be full time students. Coxswains Non-rowing, cox only. Full year Free * At the October 17, 1999, annual meeting the membership voted to approve a $100 annual assessment to all regular members (excluding students and juniors) beginning in the year 2000 and continuing through 2009. All proceeds of the assessment shall be used to finance the construction of the Club's new boathouse, and for no other purpose. Funds raised for the Club by a member through Club-approved fundraising activities in a given year may be credited toward the member's assessment for that year. Thus, dues for regular members are $200 plus the $100 assessment for a total of $300 per year. Learn-to-Row Classes—$150/session (discounted to $125 if participant signs up during walk-down registration) Additional Coaching Fees Occasionally a coach may be willing to conduct additional practices above and beyond the minimum number they are required to conduct under their contract (which varies by program). If a rower chooses to participate in additional coached practices, there may be an added fee required which is paid directly to the coach. Fundraising Every member is responsible for volunteering time to help earn money for the club. Fundraising opportunities will be announced as they are scheduled. Workdays Occasional workdays are scheduled throughout the rowing season to maintain the facilities, equipment, docks, and lawn. All MRC members are expected to participate in workdays so that the burden of maintaining our boathouse and shells, etc., falls equally on everyone. Volunteer Commitment As the number of members has increased to near-capacity, and as the club has upgraded and increased its fleet and facilities, the need has arisen for more participation from club members to complete essential tasks around the boathouse. The volunteer committee has organized a list of various tasks, and each member of the club is asked to sign up to take charge of a particular item. Duties include changing light bulbs, filling gas tanks, washing towels, mowing the lawn, sweeping, teaching Learn To Row classes, and much, much more. Bicycles There should be no bicycles stored in the boathouses—they could cause damage to rowing equipment and are an inconvenience to others who have to move them to get their boats out. Please use the bike racks on the river side of the boathouse. If you have a special situation, see the commodore. Private Boat Storage Policy Members may rent space for privately owned rowing shells in the boathouse at a rate fixed by the board of governors. Fees for rack space are due April 1. Space is rented on a calendar-year basis (January–December). Rack fees for private boats: • single—$135/year • double—$185/year The allotment of rack space is made by the commodore, who will consider the nature of the equipment to be stored, the ease of access, the frequency of use, and the members’ contributions to club. If a boat is rowed a minimum of six time per year (as reflected in the log book), the boat owner will be entitled to renew his or her lease for the next year. The commodore may, in his or her discretion, renew a lease if a boat has not been used a minimum of six times a year. Members may store privately owned sculls, oars, or slings in the boathouse without charge, space permitting. Members are urged to store all other equipment (such as covers and boat racks) off-site, but may in certain circumstances keep such items at the boathouse with the express permission of the commodore. The commodore will maintain a waiting list of people who wish to rent boat racks. Waiting list positions are not transferable. As rack space becomes available, the commodore will give preference to people who have been on the waiting list the longest. However, other factors may also be considered, such as the number of rack spaces an owner has already rented, the frequency of use of the equipment to be stored, and the owner’s contributions to the club. Members renting rack space may transfer the space when selling the boat berthed in that space. Notification of any such transfer must be given to the commodore. The board of governors may deny space in any case considered to be contrary to the goals of the organization. The board may terminate any rental agreement with good cause. The Minneapolis Rowing Club is not liable for any damage, theft, or personal injury resulting from the placement of private equipment in the boathouse or from its use. It is suggested that members storing equipment in the boathouse insure it against any loss. MRC History Wishing to improve their physical condition as well as their social advancement, fifteen young men founded the Lurline Boat Club in Minneapolis, Minnesota in July 1877. They began rowing on Lake Calhoun with a four-oared gig purchased from the St. Paul Boat Club. With an admission fee of $10 per year and a $1 monthly fee, they quickly enlarged their navy by purchasing two new pair oared shells. According to newspaper accounts of the time, the rowing club was the most exclusive in the city. Their Fourth of July regattas in 1879 and 1881 had as many as five thousand spectators lining Lake Calhoun's shores. In 1885 the club hosted its first international regatta on Lake Minnetonka with the Minnesota and Winnipeg Rowing Association. This association was the forerunner to the present- day Northwestern International Rowing Association (NWIRA). As the turn of the century approached, the Lurliners were affected by a series of setbacks. They were forced to move their facility several times, their aging membership was developing an enthusiasm for golf and service organizations, and interest waned to such an extent that they considered withdrawal from the Minnesota and Winnipeg Rowing Association. Rather than withdraw, they reorganized, inviting any male paying $5 to join the newly named Minneapolis Rowing Club. The Spanish American War and World War I, though, were the death knell for the once prestigious club. Between 1901 and 1903 the navy was sold to the Minikahda Club, which in turn sold it to the Minnetonka Yacht Club. After WWI, in 1928, the Calhoun Beach Club advertised for rowers. Lee Miller and Scott Duncan responded. Initially naming themselves the Calhoun Beach Rowing Club, then the Minneapolis Crew Club, they finally restored the historic link to the original Lurliners by choosing Minneapolis Rowing Club as their new name. World War II and city expansion forced the closing of the Calhoun rowing facility. From 1958 through 1965 the members of the MRC were landlocked. They may not have rowed, but they planned and constructed the Duncan-Miller Boathouse on the west bank of the Mississippi River. The distinctive A-frame Duncan-Miller Boathouse tragically burned down September 28, 1997. Everything in the house was destroyed, including club boats, private boats, oars, coaching launches, ergometers, weight equipment, and regatta equipment. Though the exact cause of the blaze was never determined, the fire was ruled an arson. Despite the overwhelming loss, the club came together to plan, raise funds for, and break ground on a new boathouse on the same site. The distinctive parabolic roof, intended to mimic the motion of an oar pulling through water, as well as the distinctive wood ribbing in the interior, garnered a Progressive Architecture Award from Architectural Record magazine for Vincent James Architects. The new boathouse opened for official use during the 2002 rowing season. Board of Governors The board of governors consists of seven officers and anywhere from four to eight members at large. The club holds an annual general membership meeting, usually in October, to elect new officers. All regular members in good standing may participate in the election. The term for each officer position is one year. Members at large serve on the board for two years. Four new members at large are usually elected by the new officers each year to add to four second term members at large and complete the board. Board meetings are held once a month, with agendas e-mailed to the membership ten days prior. Meeting minutes are likewise sent via e-mail to club members. All club members may attend the board meetings and submit issues to be added to the agenda for discussion at upcoming meetings. Officers President—the chief executive officer of the board of governors; heads board meetings and drafts meeting agendas Vice-President—performs all duties of the president in the president’s absence Secretary—custodian of all the records, books, and documents of the club Treasurer—custodian of all funds of the club Commodore—custodian of all the boats, oars, buildings, grounds, docks, and other equipment Men’s Captain—acts as liaison between crew members and coaches Women’s Captain—acts as liaison between crew members, coaches, and rest of club • See the club by-laws for a more detailed description of each position [ATTACHED? WHERE?] • See the website for a list of the current board members and their contact information Committees Any club member may participate in the committees below—in fact, it is highly encouraged for members to be involved. A board member typically holds the position of chairperson for each committee. • Capital Improvements—directs development of boathouse facilities and grounds • Coaching—identifies and approves coaches for all club programs • College Liaison—acts as conduit for contracts and information between MRC and college affiliates • Communications—routes information throughout club, publishes Currents • Equipment (traditionally run by the Commodore)—oversees distribution of equipment to club programs, equipment upkeep, and equipment sales and purchases • Finance—oversees club financial matters • Fundraising—determines funding goals and methods • Learn-to-Row—organizes registration, session schedules, and coaching • Policy—reviews club rules and procedures • Safety—reviews club safety standards • Volunteer—maintains list of volunteer duties, organizes volunteer efforts • Way to Row—operates, advises program Programs Learn-to-Row Classes Six learn-to-row sessions are offered per season for persons 18 and older. Each session—two each in June, July, and August—consists of eight two-hour classes that meet three times a week over the course of roughly two and a half weeks. Approximately ten people are introduced to the basics of sweep rowing, rowing terminology, safety, and introductory sculling. (Following completion of a learn- to-row session, students are able to register as a member of the club and participate in novice rowing.) Juniors Learn-to-Row Classes Roughly two learn-to-row sessions are offered per season for persons between the ages of 14 and 18. Each session consists of a single day spent introducing students to the basics of sweep rowing, rowing terminology, and safety. (Following completion of a learn-to-row session, students are able to register as a member of the club and participate in the juniors rowing program.) Juniors Program This is a coached program for students between the ages of 14 and 18. Participants are required to attend four to five practices per week during the competitive season. Junior rowers will compete in several regattas over the course of the season, which generally lasts from June until the end of August. Parents of junior rowers are strongly encouraged to be involved with their children's competitive events and other rowing activities. Way to Row The Way to Row program is a specialized rowing course directed at teaching rowing to at-risk youth between the ages of 14 and 18. The MRC partners with an established local entity that works with this population of youth to provide a recreational and instructive element for participants. Practices are held once to twice a week from June through August, and, depending on the season, may culminate in participation in a regatta. Rowers are welcome to join the juniors program upon completion of Way to Row. Novice Program The Novice Program provides coaching in sweep rowing and sculling three days a week for adult rowers who have recently completed a Learn-to-Row course. Rowers will gain essential experience and hone their skills in rowing technique, coxing, bowing, river navigation, equipment care, and boat handling. Novice rowers can only take out MRC equipment independently after the Novice coach has verified their competency with the aforementioned skills. (See information about the bow list under the "Safety" section.) After completing a season in the novice program, rowers are welcome to transition into the Sport or Competitive Program. Sport/Recreational Program This program provides coaching in sweep rowing and sculling three days a week for rowers who want to row recreationally as well as for those who want to compete but cannot commit to the required practice schedule of the Competitive Program. Competitive Program Experienced adult rowers can participate in either the Men's or the Women's Competitive Team. Members are required to attend at least four to five of six scheduled practices per week during the summer season (June through August) to participate in this program. Coaching for sweep rowing as well as sculling in all boat sizes is provided. WHAT TO KNOW WHILE ON LAND Choosing a Boat Beginning rowers need to get permission from their coach to row a boat unsupervised or to use certain types of boats. Permission is, however, contingent on appropriate water conditions and club safety rules (see "What to Know on the Water.") See your coach for more information on what boats you can take out. At times, particular boats need repairs; these boats will be marked with an orange "Do Not Row" sticker. It should go without saying, but do not row a boat with a "Do Not Row" sticker affixed to it. Comic mishaps—or worse—could occur. Even without the sticker, some boats need maintenance. Before hitting the water rowers should check for missing seats, incorrect rigging, and loose foot stretchers. If any piece of equipment is questionable, bring it up with your coach before heading to the water. Reserving Boats Club boats may be reserved two days in advance on a weekly calendar posted near the door in the boathouse. Boats reserved for coached practices for all programs are also indicated on this calendar. Please be courteous about showing up when you have reserved a boat or erasing your name at least half a day in advance if you need to cancel your reservation. Log Book Before taking any boat out, either a club boat or your own private boat, you MUST sign out in the log book. This holds true whether the boat is being removed from the boathouse for a row, to go to a regatta, or to be sent away for repairs. This is mandated by our insurance policy, and the consequences for having an accident on the river in an un-logged boat are great. The log book is located near the door in each boathouse. If you are taking a boat from the new boathouse, sign the log book from that boathouse. If you're headed out of the old boathouse, sign that log book. When signing the log book, write the date, time, names of all rowers in the boat, and your intended direction (down river or upriver). When you come back from rowing it is VERY IMPORTANT to sign in with the time you returned. Failure to do so may result in a search party trolling the river in search of a missing rower. Bow/Cox List Since, in all sculling and some sweep boats, the rower in bow seat is responsible for navigation, bows (as well as coxswains) must have a solid knowledge of and comfort level negotiating the various hazards of the river. To ensure this, all rowers must obtain permission to bow or cox club boats. Concern for the safety of MRC members is the primary purpose of the bow list. Occupying a position on the bow/cox list entitles a rower to sign particular boats out to row [UNSUPERVISED BY A COACH]. This individual thereby accepts full responsibility for the condition of the boat and safety of the crew while the boat is signed out. Membership in the MRC does not confer a place on the bow/cox list. Only the commodore or a coach may add a person to the bow/cox list or change an individual’s place on the list. The head coach of each program typically maintains a bow/cox list that identifies which rowers are recommended to bow or cox a particular type and level of boat, and the commodore approves the recommendations. A rower initially gets on the list, and moves up to higher levels, by gaining experience in bowing or coxing under a coach's supervision. Beginning rowers interested in bowing or coxing can request practice under a coach's tutelage. The MRC bow/cox list identifies a hierarchy of club equipment and the people who may sign out equipment at each level. There are four levels of equipment (assignment of specific boats to each of these categories is an annual responsibility of the commodore): 1) Novice 2) Recreational 3) Experienced 4) Advanced In general, the Novice group includes wherries and other boats that relatively inexperienced rowers may use safely; the Advanced group includes the newest, most competitive hulls the MRC owns that can be signed out by those MRC members most experienced in rowing, boat safety, and boat handling. A rower’s position on the bow/cox list is in an indication of a rower’s ability to operate the equipment; knowledge of the river and rules of navigation; good judgment in the use of equipment under differing conditions; and ability to abide by MRC policies. Lifting and Carrying Boats Before you even attempt to pick up and move a boat, make sure that you have the appropriate slings set up to set the boat in once you're outside the boathouse. Check that you are using MRC slings, not personal slings (they are labeled). Pay attention to removing boats from the racks, as the boats are stored in rather tight confines along the walls. It's tricky to avoid rigging and rack beams, but it can be done. Be sure to confer with a more experienced rower or your coach if you are unsure as to how to maneuver a boat from its storage space. Above all, don't be afraid to ask for help, even if you merely need a spotter to watch and make certain that the procedure goes smoothly. Rowers should never attempt to carry a fully rigged boat with less than the number of rowers the boat holds (i.e.: eight people carry an eight, four people carry a four or quad, etc.). If you are uncertain about how to properly carry any boat, especially doubles and singles, ask for assistance. Wiping Down Boats After rowing, all club boats must be wiped down with a towel before being put back in the boathouse. If water is available, wet the boat and wipe down to remove river scum. Re-rigging Boats If you had to re-rig a boat in order to row it, you must return the rigging to the state that it was in before you used the boat. This is important for boats that are used by multiple groups, as it ensures that a boat is ready for the next group that has scheduled to use it. Replacing Boats on the Racks Before bringing any boat back into the boathouse, make sure that the correct end of the boat will be going in first. All the boats in the boathouse should have the bows and sterns facing the same direction—bows upriver and sterns downriver. Take as much care in replacing boats on the racks as you did removing them, especially with tired arms. Bringing in Slings If you know there are other boats still on the water when you come in and there are not many sets of slings setting out, it is ok to leave some out. However, if you are one of the last to come off the water and you know there aren't any other boats still out, please bring in all slings even if you didn't set them out yourself. To determine if there might be boats still out on the water, check the log book or look for empty racks in the boathouse. Reporting Damage When equipment is damaged, major or minor, on or off the water, the incident must be reported. There are forms in the boathouse to fill out when a boat is damaged. On the form, identify the location of the damage, how it was incurred (if known); the date and time that it was observed, and your contact information. If the damage renders the boat unfit to row, you must also tag it with an orange "Do Not Row" sign to prevent anyone else from taking them out until it is repaired. Ideally, the Commodore should be informed of damage to any club equipment, but if he or she is not available a coach may also be informed. Anyone responsible for damaging equipment is also responsible for helping to repair it. Closing the Boathouse Doors If you are the last boat to go out on the water and no one is left at the boathouse, close the doors. If you are the last boat to come in, close and lock the doors before going home. (Some doors are a bit tricky to shut all the way—make sure that they do.) Anyone who has a key to the boathouse is responsible for locking the doors before leaving OR making sure that someone else with a key is still there. Coaching Launches The rowers in each program are responsible for bringing down and putting away their own coach's launch. The rowers are also responsible for making sure the gas tanks are full for the coaching launches. Gas expenses will be reimbursed by the club Treasurer. Our outboard motors are two- stroke motors; be sure you add the appropriate amount of two-cycle oil to the gas. Do not leave unmixed gas at the boathouse unless it isa clearly marked as such; accidental use of gas without two- cycle oil will cause serious engine damage. WHAT TO KNOW ON THE WATER Traffic Patterns In general, MRC shells should row down river on the Minneapolis side of the river and upriver on the St. Paul side. (The MRC boathouse is on the west bank of the river.) Boats should never proceed on the wrong side of the river unless directed to do so by a coach or race official, or under emergency circumstances, such as an approaching barge, which must stay within the confines of the navigation channel. The river's navigation channel is marked by red and green buoys, or, in the absence of buoys, by daymarks (which are the reflective, diamond-shaped symbols on shore). Facing downstream, red buoys mark the port (left) side of the channel, and green buoys mark the starboard (right) side of the river. All motorized river traffic, including barges and tour boats, are confined to this channel. With a few exceptions, THE SAFEST PLACE TO BE WHEN BARGES ARE COMING IS OUT OF THE CHANNEL. A map of the “pool”—the rowable stretch of river upstream from the Ford Bridge to St. Anthony Falls—is posted in the boathouse. Adhere to the navigation channel as marked by the buoys whenever possible. (See also Ad. I: River Traffic Map.) Boats should never stop in the water positioned perpendicular to the shore. When stopped for any reason, boats must maintain an orientation parallel to shore. Things to Watch Out for on the River • Buoys—These do get moved sometimes, especially in the spring and fall, so don't assume their location. They come up on you quickly as you move downstream, especially when the current is strong. • Bridges—Never turn a boat around near, under, or immediately upriver of a bridge. The current can push a turning boat right into a bridge piling, so make sure you are far enough away or down river of a bridge before turning. Another hazard comes from certain individuals who feel compelled to hurl items (firecrackers, rocks, insults, etc.) from atop the bridges we row under (especially the railroad bridge). It is best to ignore these folks, avoid passing directly under them, and, if a cell phone is handy, call the police department. • Sandbars—You may want to study the river map to see where sandbars are located. Although these are generally not a problem, when the water level is especially low you may need to row closer to the middle of the river. • Debris—It's a shame, but our Mississippi is often marred by trash and other flotsam. Pop bottles, plastic bags, and dead fish pose few problems, but logs and branches of varying size can cause considerable damage. They sometimes float just under the surface of the water, so bows and coxswains need to pay considerable attention to spotting them and steering clear. Debris tends to be worse in the spring and after it rains. • Deadheads—Deadheads are what happens when a free-floating log becomes mired in the riverbed, usually with one end pointing up toward (and sometimes through) the surface of the water. These can be very difficult to see and extremely damaging to boats. They can also occur almost anywhere in the river, near shore or smack in the middle of the channel. Bows and coxswains, again, need to watch closely for them. • Other Watercraft—We share the river with motor boats, jet skis, canoes, other rowing shells, paddlewheels, and barges. Legally, motor boats and jet skis are required to decrease speed so as to cause a minimum wake when coming upon rowers. This doesn't always happen. Stop rowing if necessary to wait for motorized watercraft and the ensuing wake to go by. Barges and paddlewheels, however, need not stop for rowers and have the right of way. And their wakes have been known to swamp shells of any size. See more on barges below. • The Ford Dam—Downstream from the boathouse is the Ford Dam, and it's the main reason we learn to row upstream. If anything happens to boats that are rowing downstream, they may not be able to get to shore before going over the dam. This is especially important to remember in faster water. • Sunbathers and Other River Denizens—You may chance upon the odd nude sunbather sunning on the shore, or a camper setting up on the riverbank. They are harmless and sometimes friendly. It's advisable, however, to ignore them and continue rowing. Barge Traffic Foremost to remember: Barges can't stop. It's your job to stay out of the way. That said, here are a couple things to counter that heart-pounding feeling you get when a barge sneaks up behind you. • ANY time is barge time—they move along the river at all times of day and night. • Barges travel up and down the main channel of the river, between the green and red buoys. • If a barge sounds its horn, it means you're too close. Don't panic, just move to one side of the river as quickly as possible. You may sometimes need to cross to the wrong side of the river to temporarily get out of the way of a barge. Make sure you also watch out for other rowers when doing so. Point your boat so that it is parallel to the wake, ride it out, and wait for the barge to pass. Launching and Docking Always push off and come into the dock with your bow pointing upriver. If you plan to row upriver first, quickly row to the St. Paul side after pushing off. If you plan to row down river first, row away from the dock into the middle of the river and turn around. Then move toward the Minneapolis side as you head down river. When docking or preparing to launch be very aware of other boats that are coming in or going out. At times, it's most feasible to wait for a smaller boat to land and get off the water, rather than making it wait for an entire eight to load, tie in, and launch. Certain times of the day feature more rowing traffic than others, especially early morning on weekdays and weekends, and after work during the week. The bustle in the boathouse as folks get ready to launch is amplified in the traffic on the water. Pay attention to what's going on in both areas, and be respectful of others needing to move more quickly or slowly than you. Flipping a Boat Before you even set out from the dock, BE CAREFUL NEVER TO TIE YOUR SHOES TOO TIGHT. Also, make sure that the heels of your shoes are tied to the footstretchers. In the event of a flipped boat, you need to be able to get your feet free quickly. If you should flip or fall out of your boat, remain calm and STAY WITH THE BOAT. It will float. The oars are certified personal flotation devices—they will float, too. [THIS TRUE???] Wait for the launch to arrive, or try to kick your way to shore and get back in the boat there. Ask an experienced rower or coach for other techniques for getting back into a flipped single. Cold-Water Policy When cold-water rowing conditions exist, defined as water temperature below 55 degrees Fahrenheit as determined by the commodore, club equipment will only be used as described below so as to be in compliance with USRA guidelines. A) When the water temperature is below 45 degrees, all club-owned boats must be accompanied by a launch and must remain within 500 meters of that launch. The boats must be signed out in the log book, listing the name of the launch driver who is accompanying those boats. B) When the water temperature is between 45 and 55 degrees, club-owned boats must stay in groups of two or more and must remain within 250 meters of all other boats in their group. The boats must be signed out in the log book, listing all other boats in the group. Owners of private equipment are strongly encouraged to follow the above guidelines, and are expected to make responsible and mature decisions in an effort to promote safe and responsible rowing for all club members. These guidelines establish a minimum safety standard. All rowers are encouraged to use extreme caution in any conditions that pose a risk of hypothermia. This policy is usually only necessary in the spring and late fall. Bottom Line: Ask the commodore or your coach before using club equipment when the cold-water policy is in effect. Lightning Policy NEVER launch a boat if you see lightning! According to USRA guidelines, rowers must wait 30 minutes after lightning has been sighted, and no new lightning bolts have been seen, to launch. If lightning is sighted while you are already on the water, you must return to the boathouse IMMEDIATELY and wait for conditions to clear. Low-Light Policy All boats rowing after sunset or before sunrise are required by Minnesota law to display a white light that is visible from a distance of at least two miles. In addition, all club-owned boats that are rowing more than thirty minutes before sunrise or more than thirty minutes after sunset must be accompanied by a launch unless specifically exempted by the commodore. The boats must be signed out in the log book, listing the name of the launch driver who is accompanying those boats. Sunset and sunrise times are to be determined by the commodore, and are published in the Department of Natural Resources' publication "Minnesota Boating Guide." Owners of private equipment are strongly encouraged to follow the above guidelines, and are expected to make responsible and mature decisions in an effort to promote safe and responsible rowing for all club members. These guidelines establish a minimum safety standard. All rowers are encouraged to use extreme caution in low-light conditions, including those that exist due to weather conditions. Other Adverse Conditions Under certain adverse conditions, you should decide against going out on the water. These include excessive heat and humidity, high wind, downpour, horizontal rain, rough water (marked by whitecaps), strong current, excessive debris, or ominous weather. Not only do these conditions make rowing dangerous, but incredibly frustrating and not much fun. Regattas Regattas that competitive members typically attend throughout the year: San Diego Crew Classic (San Diego, CA) April Great Plains Rowing Chmp. (Topeka, Kansas) April Midwest Sprints (Madison, WI) April Pull for Leukemia (St. Paul, MN) June Canada Day Regatta (Thunder Bay, Ont.) June Duluth Invitational Regatta (Duluth, MN) July American Rowing Championships (traveling) July/August NWIRA Championships (traveling) July or August Royal Canadian Henley (St. Catherine, Ont.) August Masters Nationals (traveling) August or September Death Row (Duluth, MN) September Head of the Des Moines (Des Moines, IA) September Head of the Mississippi (Mpls, MN)* October Head of the Charles (Boston, MA) October *In the past this regatta has been hosted by MRC as a fundraiser for Cystic Fibrosis. The HOTM has recently been organized and held by the University of Minnesota.