Who should not row?

People with heart conditions or other medical conditions including chronic bad backs; people unable to climb a ladder (our normal means of boarding boats); people prone to sea or motion sickness; people who can’t follow instructions.

What should I bring?

A water bottle, clothing and soft-soled shoes or sandals you don’t mind getting dirty or wet, sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat, and a good attitude.

What sort of paperwork is involved?

Each rower needs to sign our insurance waiver, good for the rest of the season. Those under 18 need to have the waiver signed by their parents or guardian; those under 16 normally need to be accompanied by their parents or guardian.

What should I do/know before I get in the boat?

You should select a life jacket from our rack that fits and is comfortable; learn how to connect your oar to the thole pins, or dowels, that we use instead of oarlocks; understand how to use the ladder (two hands at all times) and where to step in the boat (seats and floorboards only, not rail or planks); and appreciate the importance of following orders from your coxswain, or skipper.

How long are the trips?

That depends on the tide, weather and wind conditions at the time of your launch, and the ability and desire of your fellow rowers. Weekday rows typically last an hour or so, while weekend cruises tend to be a bit longer.

What are my responsibilities?

To help launch and recover the boat; to keep your PFD on and fastened at all times; to follow instructions; and to help wipe down the boat and store equipment at the end of the row.

Do you race these boats?

We host and participate in a few events a year, and also form youth teams and travel to regattas in other cities. See our website for details.

How much does it cost?

We do not charge a fee, but we do encourage donations. You can make them online in the Donate page, or by sending a check to Village Community Boathouse, Inc., c/o Ruth Lindner, 230 West 16 St. #2AB, New York, NY 10011. There is also a donation box inside the boathouse.

How can I volunteer?

You can learn to become a certified coxswain, or skipper (we offer a day-long introductory course several times a season, and further training thereafter), and work with our many school groups; you can volunteer in the boathouse as a record-keeper, boat repair-specialist or boatbuilder; you can fund-raise or attend community meetings on our behalf; and you can help us plan and run special events and voyages.