March 21, 2012
SEATTLE - The Washington rowing season kicks off this Saturday with the 111th annual Class Day Regatta. It's an event long woven into the fabric of the Husky crew program, featuring races between boats filled with oarsmen and oarswomen representing their graduate classes.
But the action down on the Montlake Cut is not the only thing on the docket. The weekend begins on Friday at 12:30 p.m. as the Washington program will remember a fallen student-athlete in William Peter Allen, who passed away last September while rock climbing with friends at Snoqualmie Falls. The Puyallup, Wash., native will have a racing shell dedicated in his honor and the boat will be raced by his classmates at Class Day. The Allen family and the Washington Athletic Department extend the invitation for all to attend the event at Conibear Shellhouse.
Later that evening, the Huskies will host the Varsity Boat Club banquet on Friday, March 23 at 6 p.m. inside the Conibear Shellhouse dining room. More information is available by contacting Katherine Gardner at firstname.lastname@example.org.
On Saturday, the racing begins at 8 a.m. when the Husky women's alumni set fire to the Montlake Cut. The 1,000-meter race will feature former student-athletes from several generations, and fans are encouraged to head down to the Cut early to watch from the shore. For more info, please contact Denni Nessler at email@example.com.
While the Cut is a great place to watch the Class Day Races, it pales to the experience of enjoying the action from an Argosy cruise boat. The Class Day Cruise will depart the Waterfront Activities center on Saturday at 8 a.m. On board, fans and parents can snack on refreshments and listen to Husky coaches Bob Ernst and Michael Callahan offer race commentary from the stern of the boat. The cruise will return to shore following the races, right before the team holds its post-race barbeque and awards ceremony. The BBQ is free for all to enjoy. More info is available by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
The official Class Day races begin promptly at 10:00 a.m., starting with the Women's Varsity/Novice Challenge. Up next is the men's Varsity/Freshman Challenge at 10:10, followed by the Seattle Times women's Class Day race at 10:20. The last race of the afternoon is the George Varnell men's Class Day race at 10:30.
The last event following the races is a christening of another racing shell - the Margaret Gillen. The boat, a women's four, is a gift courtesy of John and Jean Anne Dobrowolski, parents of two Husky rowers. Finally, the Huskies will unveil the Gil Gamble `75 coaching launch, which was donated by alums who rowed for Gil Gamble as freshmen. Gamble has been fighting cancer, and his former athletes wanted a dedication to preserve his name with Washington rowing.