Members of a Greenpoint boating group kayaked and canoed from their dock on the Newtown Creek all the way down to Governor’s Island for a competition and camp-out on July 18, and organizers said it was an oar-some adventure.
“It was a really great trip overall,” said North Brooklyn Boat Club member Brian Quinn, who arranged the expedition.
Quinn said the group navigated the first leg of the journey through the Creek’s toxic water with caution. The club employs a practice called the “j-stroke” — a paddling action in the shape of the letter J that he says minimizes splash-back. Rowers also wash their hands once they hit land, Quinn said.
Upon arriving at Governor’s Island, the 20-member crew joined other boat clubs from around the city to compete in the annual “Cardboard Kayak” race, where the nautical hobbyists design and race disposable kayaks they have to construct on the spot.
The team placed third in this year’s event, a slip from last year’s second-place standing, but the members are already planning a more streamlined boat design for next year’s contest, Quinn said.
“We’ll make it a longer and narrower boat next year,” he said.
After the race, the contestants had a cookout and spent the night camping on the island. Quinn said the yearly rowers’ rally is a great opportunity to meet up with fellow sea dogs.
“It’s sort of like a boat club jamboree,” said Quinn. “It’s the one event that gets all the boat clubs together — it’s a nice experience.”