Hurricane Ida Recovery
UPDATE 1/15. Boats are back and up on the racks! January saw us not only surpass our goal of $20,000 for emergency fundraising, but we were able to receive back all of our repaired or replaced boats. While our singles are well known to us and look great with their new paint, all of our eights were financially beyond repair, so we looked about to acquire newer versions of the weight classes needed for the same prices. We now have a range of eights that brings our fleet replacement plan at least three years ahead of schedule, and can fit rowers from all weight classes and age ranges. We also picked up a replacement double for the venerable Ed Karp that can be converted into a pair, giving the program doubles and pairs in all weight classes as well. The flexibility under this fleet for training and programing will allow rowers of any age, size, or ability to flourish. The support from our friends and community made this happen, and we're forever grateful to everyone involved.
UPDATE 11/15. With another month and a half gone by, we've been able to get so many things in motion. Our boats were trailered up to the repair shop in Baltimore, and are in the midst of being refurbished, or in some cases, replacements sourced that can be suitable for our club. We also were able to get the racks rebuilt, going from 80lbs of concrete in the base to a whopping 550lbs for each stand. Considering the racks that stayed up all were at 400lb for the small boat racks, we're satisfied with the new build!
All of this was made possible by the time of our rowers, and the generous support of people like you! Our friends, family, and supporters who know the value of our program and support the mission we work on every day.
UPDATE 10/1. Fours weeks into our recovery and we are three quarters of the way to being able to fully repair our boats and Boathouse. We are so thankful for the support from our local, national, and international community! The past weekend our Master and Junior rowers did the hard work of cleaning out all the organic debris after the electrical wire was safely secured, and we hauled over 40 wheelbarrows of fallen trees and moved multiple tons of building debris that had to be cut and hauled by hand within the tight spaces of our boathouse. Our eights are stripped down and ready for repair and the rowers are back out on the water hitting the workouts to prepare for our home races and the Head of the South Regatta.
While doing all this, the team has been cheering on our teammates John and Hannah Huppi as they continue to compete for the United States in the Coastal Rowing World Championships. We can't wait to get them back out with us and continue building a world-class program!
On August 29th, the 16th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane Ida made landfall at Port Forchon, Louisiana approximately 63 miles south of New Orleans. Wind speeds were 150+ miles per hour, making it a Category 4 storm. While New Orleans Levees and Floodwalls held, the winds, flooding, and storm surge caused catastrophic damage to many parts of the Greater New Orleans area. This same storm then continued up to the northeast United States, damage boathouses along the way, including many in Philadelphia, New Jersey, and New York.
Unfortunately, the NORC boathouse was hit hard. Our most immediate concern preventing any activity is the power line down in our boathouse. Club leadership is in contact with Entergy to get it taken care of but until then our boathouse is closed for all rowers and workouts.
While we have not completely inventoried the damage, we stabilized the boats and structures to prevent further damage as safely as possible. Our 8s rack fell over, likely destroying all four of its shells. Our doubles rack was hit hard, and multiple boats came off the rack. The roof of a storage structure was blown off into our singles and oar storage, damaging most of the singles kept there. There is damage to our dock from tree limbs and flooding. While this is a devastating blow to our club and rowing in New Orleans, we are resilient. The good news is that we believe our clubsingles, oars, and the oars rack are okay.
We anticipate insurance covering damage and repairs to many of our boats. But, we will need to pay for transportation to a repair facility as well as heavy equipment to remove the large building debris, fix the fence gate and any other fencing affected by the downed limbs of trees from the home next to the boathouse, as well as supplies to rebuild the 8s rack and stabilize the others. Some boats may not be economical to repair and will require replacements.
How can you help?
Our goal is to raise $20,000 to supplement what the Club can finance. Whether you can donate with $15 or $500, every bit helps us get our Juniors, Masters, and Learn-to-Row classes back on the water.
Monetary donations can be made:
Through our club's PayPal
By check (made out to NORC, subject Hurricane Ida Recovery, mailed to 3 Versailles Blvd, New Orleans, LA 70125)
Other ways to help:
Gear - You can also support the club by purchasing gear through our Squad Locker Store. For the next 30 days 15% of all spending in the store will go towards funding for repairs.
Volunteer - You can join us in the clean-up (times & dates TBD). We will need heavy machinery and a large crew to remove debris from the boathouse.
Other Donations - If you know of any clubs, companies, or organizations that are willing to donate equipment, we greatly appreciate the help. Equipment donations will help us accelerate the timeline to get our junior, masters, and LTR programs up and running again.
Any funds that go unused for repairs and bringing the fleet back will be put toward our RowNOLA Initiative and youth scholarship fund.