Thursday, February 10, 2011

Celebrate the history of the UNCW Crew Club!

To a former UNCW Crew Club member not many things sound quite as appealing as being back in the waters of Wilmington. Climbing into your boats and slicing through the picturesque Cape Fear River brings feelings of nostalgia. On February 26, crew club alumni will gather in Wilmington for their annual reunion.

To truly understand the significance of this club we found pieces of the club's history in the Randall Library Archives. The earliest mention of the team is from 1969. Professor John Anderson, with the help of Bob Walton, formed and coached a team that first raced for the Feast of the Pirates celebration at Wrightsville beach in May of 1970. In this first race they went up against UNC-Chapel Hill and The Citadel.

They gained support and equipment through congressman Alton A. Lennon, who managed to obtain military-school cast-offs for the team to practice with. The team participated in their first intercollegiate match in 1976 against UNC-Chapel Hill and achieved victory. Throughout the 1970's, the team participated in the Azalea Festival Regatta under the guidance of their coach Professor Anderson.

In 1986, the application was filed and approved for the official formation of the UNCW Crew Club under the leadership of club President Ted Uhlman. From there the club continued on to 25 years of fun and hard work in the waters of Wilmington, carrying on a rich legacy of rowing at UNCW.

UNCW welcomes former crew members back for a day of rowing, reminiscing, food, and old friends during the annual Crew Club Reunion on February 26. The day will begin with the annual Fun Row at the Wilmington Marine Center. The group will then head to lunch and later reconvene at the Wise Alumni House for dinner and celebration.

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