One of the best things OKC did through the MAPS program was build up the Riversport area south of downtown. The Oklahoma River was a sludge filled, drug addled hell hole of a bottomless pit before the city decided to kick it up a notch and turn it into a world class rowing and riversport community. I say world class because the entire area has turned into an Olympic training center for river sports. In addition to rowing and paddle sports, there are four boathouses, rapids, a zip-line, a pump track, and various other features. That makes it totally kick ass, IMO.
I was fortunate enough to get to participate in the ACA National Championships held on the river Wednesday through Saturday this week. The volunteer coordinator put out a call for boat drivers to handle any accidents and haul officials around. I got an official on my boat and got to rescue three athletes who dumped their boats during the race.
And yes, we wore lifejackets! No, I didn’t drown anyone.
To say this was a blast is an understatement! I will definitely be back to enjoy this event in the coming years. I met an amazing official from San Diego named Steve whose daughter was competing in the championships. And by the way, the placed on the podium on seven of nine races she entered. And she’s only fourteen years old!
I only managed a handful of pictures because I was on the boat for most of the day, but here are the few I shot. Enjoy!