Central Alberta Rowing Club volunteers were hard at work on the dock and boat shelter at the club’s site on Lacombe Lake on Saturday to prepare for the rowing season. (Photo contributed)

Rowing club gets five-year occupation licence

Central Alberta Rowing Club prepares for the season

Central Alberta Rowing Club has a new five-year licence to really settle into the north end of Lacombe Lake.

Last week Lacombe County Council approved the licence of occupation for an undeveloped road allowance as a staging area for the club’s activities.

Previously the club held a one-year licence for the same location on the lake, located between Lacombe and Blackfalds.

Club president Andy Nokes said support for the five-year licence was reassuring.

“Council realized the lake has great potential. It’s good news,” Nokes said.

He said allowing the rowing club access is in line with the county’s long-term development plan that includes the recreational use of county land.

For about a decade, the club used a Lacombe Lake owner’s property to launch their boats but outgrew that site.

He said the new location will give the club an opportunity to grow.

“A lot of people don’t seem to realize the lake is there. It’s a beautiful location. It’s ideal for canoeing, kayaking, rowing.”

And power boats are forbidden, he added.

Nokes said it’s taken almost two years to relocate and the plan is to have everything completed by the end of summer.

“The boat house is up. Yesterday we put up boat racks and oar racks inside.”

Work on the floating dock will be complete in time for the club’s annual Learn to Row event on May 26 and 27.

A new youth camp will also run July 3 to 6 for ages 10 to 14.

He said after acquiring a couple smaller boats that have been refurbished and ordering a new small boat, the club now has equipment for younger rowers.

With the focus more on relocating and less on recruiting, membership is at an all-time low of about 15, he said.

“(Rowing) doesn’t seem to be that well known in Central Alberta.”

But it’s really a sport for almost anyone, Nokes said.

“You can keep rowing up into your 60s.”

For more on Learn to Row contact Emily Stapley at 403-597-9011 or email info@centralalbertarowing.com. For information on Central Alberta Rowing Club and its events visit www.centralalbertarowing.com.



szielinski@reddeeradvocate.com

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