With the Curling Association being the only sport to survive budget cuts, students around campus created a Rowing Club that all can join and are using available resources to keep it alive.
“Sometimes we practice in some of the puddles around campus,” said senior President Ima Paddle. “With all the snow melting they’re the size of small lakes anyway.”
The idea for a rowing club came when she sank waist deep into puddle at the end of her driveway. She coordinated with Outdoor Edventures and was able to find some rowboats and start a team.
The club meets outside the Allen Center on Mondays and Wednesdays at 3:30 p.m. From there members trek to the nearest puddle and begin to practice.
“The first day of practice we were able to get from one of the intramural fields to the other. It’s been a little harder to find places of that length to practice in since then, but we make it happen,” said junior secretary Don Tneedamotor.
The club plans to call itself Spring Fever in honor of the thaw that got them started.
One of the toughest things for new rowing members is adjusting to the muscles being used to row.
“I worked out three days a week before I joined the club,” Tneedamotor said. “But by the end of the first week my arms were so sore it felt like they had never been used.”
The club started with a dozen members and has grown to over 50 since it began. However, Paddle and Tneedamotor said the club was open to all students and that there’s no member limit.
“It’s definitely something to try if you haven’t,” Paddle said. “It’s a nice way to spend time outside and cruise around campus.”
Spring Fever is looking into setting up a competition with other nearby UW schools.
“We’re willing to let them borrow our boats and compete out here,” said senior Vice President Rose Boats.
With the loss of their programs, many athletes have joined the Rowing Club and are excited to start competing again.
“I’ve been in sports since I was six or seven,” said sophomore Al Lete. “It’s weird not practicing every day and having games to look forward to. It was such a big part of my life.”
Once the puddles begin to evaporate the club will have to find somewhere else to practice, but Paddle says they have a few ideas in mind.
“We’re looking to get permission to practice in Schmeeckle,”Paddle said. “Otherwise we can go to Iverson.”