Due to increased spread of COVID-19 in Franklin County, GCRA will remain closed to all rowing related activities until further notice. Thank you for your patience and understanding during this time.

UPDATE 11/19/20

Safety Notice: GCRA Closed Effective Immediately to all Programming

Dear Coaches, Members, and Trustees,

Due to the rapidly rising cases of Covid-19 in Franklin County, Franklin County being elevated to purple designation, and the most recent stay-at-home advisory issued by Franklin County and the City of Columbus, GCRA has decided to close all training and programming effective immediately. GCRA will remain closed to all rowing related activities through the end of the year at which point the situation will be evaluated. For members with private equipment, you may contact Johan to retrieve your shells with a scheduled appointment. GCRA will not be releasing club equipment for private use during this time.

Thank you for your understanding during this difficult and constantly changing time.

Best regards, 

Laurie Gunzelman

GCRA President - 2020

PHASE 3 (added 9/21)

Effective immediately all shells are available to be rowed including 8+, 4+ (stern coxed). It is still recommended that rowing pods are formed that row together for the remainder of the season. We request to limit the number of rowers inside the boat bay to no more than 10 persons. COVID disinfecting protocol is still in effect. Masks or gaiters to be worn when not actively rowing. Effective immediately Phase 1 protocol is no longer in effect and larger shells may be rowed any day of the week. Shell reservations limitations for 2x per week between hours of 6-10 remain in effect. PARP rowing restriction will remain in effect M/TH 5-7 pm.until 10/22. 

PHASE 2: (added 8/23)

Phase 2 will begin Monday 8/24. All protocols from phase 1 still apply, except for the where a phase 2 update overrides phase 1. Please see below for phase 2 updates:

  • As part of the city-approved conservative phasing strategy, the Columbus area rowing clubs are now permitted the use of non-cohabitating 2-, 2x, 4x, and bow coxed 4+'s.
  • The GCRA disinfecting protocol is already in place from phase 1 and shall be maintained.
  • GCRA members shall continue to wear a facial covering when not actively rowing.
  • GCRA members are recommended to create a rowing “pods” that always row together for the remaining of the season. Each member of the crew could effectively row 2-, 2x, 4+, 4X throughout the remaining of the season. Keeping rowing groups small will help limit any potential exposure.
  • As we enter this next phase of re-opening, the officers recognize that our membership may have concerns due to a compromised health condition. Because of this, large boats will have a more restricted schedule to allow for these members to continue to row with Phase 1 protocol. See below for more details.
  • With the phase 2 protocol, the boathouse has been rearranged a bit. Club singles are back on the small boat bay side, with the exception of the Griggs and Wintech 1 which are still located under the 8+'s. All quads and the Kanghua 4+ have been relocated to the south racks of the large boat bay and are all reachable without a Genie.
  • Under the Phase 2 rowing protocol, rowing hours will be as follows:
    • PARP only Mondays and Thursdays 5-7pm
    • Singles and cohabitating doubles may row at any time (except during PARP hours).
    • Large shells and non-cohabitating doubles are permitted to row Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and weekends. Tuesdays and Thursdays will remain under phase 1 protocol with no large boats (singles and cohabitating doubles only).
  • Members should limit their iCrew reservations to two reservations per week of any one shell  as a courtesy to other members.

                  PHASE 1:

                  Below are the new safety guidelines for Griggs Boathouse and GCRA operations under Phase 1 of our reopening, effective Monday 6/15. These protocols will be in place until we are given permission from the city to move into Phase 2. In general, we are asking for patience, patience, patience when returning to the boathouse. We will all be learning the new procedures and want to make sure everyone feels comfortable returning to row. We will adapt and revise these new protocols over the coming weeks as needed.



                  1. All participants, spectators, and employees must adhere to six-foot physical distancing.
                  2. Members must self-evaluate daily for symptoms. Anyone experiencing symptoms or have been around others that have symptoms must stay at home.
                  3. Practice good personal hygiene including washing hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, using hand sanitizer, refraining from touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands, coughing and sneezing into an elbow, etc.
                  4. Members are to follow Columbus Executive Order 2020-08. Masks are required when not actively rowing. (edited 7/3)


                  BOATHOUSE OPERATIONS

                  1. Members are to enter through lower doors on river side only. The main doors to the upper level of the boathouse should not be used, except in cases where it is necessary (for example, ADA access to restrooms).
                  2. Locker Rooms shall remain closed.
                  3. The Scioto room and erg activities shall remain closed.
                  4. Toilet rooms will be open. Members are encouraged to only use the toilet rooms if absolutely necessary.  Access shall be from the lower level and through the stair to main lobby.
                  5. The drinking fountains and water refill stations in the boathouse will be closed.  


                  BOAT BAY OPERATION

                  1. Members shall reserve and check out shells using new online reservation application.
                  2. We are asking that only one member be inside each boat bay at a time. We recognize there are times you may require help from another person with your shell. That is ok. However, if you are simply waiting to retrieve your shell, please wait outside the boat bay.
                  3. Slings are to be maintained on the exterior at 6’ increments. The city is asking that we do not block the third boat bay after 8:30 am in case they need to access the third boat bay. Please do what you can to accommodate this request after 8:30am. (revised 6/21)
                  4. All equipment including slings and lights must be wiped down and sanitized after every use and before being stored.
                  5. Athletes shall not touch other athlete’s equipment, water bottles, or personal items.
                  6. Oars shall be disinfected and returned to storage by the member checking out that set of oars. (ie. Teammate should not carry your oars for you)
                  7. All shells are to be fully wiped down with disinfectant by members including seat, oarlock, and shoe inserts.
                  8. If a Genie is used to retrieve a shell, the Genie is to be wiped down with disinfectant.
                  9. The rolling racks have been moved to the big boat bay. All club singles are in the big boat bay. A few are on the racks where the 8s were. The rolling racks should not have to be moved to retrieve any shell. Please do not move the rolling racks.


                  ROWING OPERATIONS

                  1. 1x rowing only at this time, and co-habitant doubles/pairs (revised 6/21).
                  2. Members rowing club shells may reserve a shell during peak hours (5am-10am (revised 6/21)) only twice per week. Outside of peak hours, members can reserve as many times as they want. This is so that we can make sure everyone gets an opportunity to row. We will reevaluate this rule based on shell usage.
                  3. Members wishing to scull alone MUST have passed the intermediate sculling test. Please see sculling eligibility rules for all other cases.
                  4. Oars shall have their handles dunked in the club provided disinfectant solution by the member who used the oar prior to returning oars to the rack.
                  5. Lights shall be wiped down after use and before returning to the charging station.
                  6. 5-7pm on Mondays and Thursdays is reserved for the PARP program only. Members not participating in the PARP program are prohibited from rowing during these times.
                  7. Launching  - members are not to touch other member’s equipment. Members are requested to launch on the south end of the dock and to not cross other rower’s areas to retrieve equipment. Boats are to not enter dock area until other members have launched when dock is full. Members shall make effort to limit cross traffic.
                  8. Recovery - Rowers are to recover on north end of dock. Recover in a timely manner to slings. Slings shall be 6' from each other. Equipment being removed from boathouse has priority over equipment being returned to the boathouse. All shells shall have the seats, oarlocks, slides and seat area fully wiped down with club supplied disinfectant after each row. All members shall use hand sanitizer or wash hands after equipment is put away.


                  PARP OPERATION

                  1. Phase I will be singles only, and the use of ergs and skierg. PARP will tape off areas in the boat bay and/or hallway to set up the equipment and ensure social distancing rules are kept. (PARP will not have access to the Scioto room. All practices will be conducted on the lower level).
                  2. Participants will be asked to wear a face mask while not rowing. PARP will have masks available for the participants and volunteers.
                  3. PARP coaches and volunteers will be trained and reminded to uphold the social distancing rule. For situations that require transfer and/or close assistance to the athlete, the coaches and volunteers who are involved will wear goggles and/or facemasks and gloves.
                  4. When possible PARP will assign equipment to the individual athlete that will not be shared with other participants. PARP will label the piece of equipment with the athletes name. All equipment will be wiped down and disinfected before and after each use by PARP coaches and staff. Equipment that will be assigned to the individual include oars, seats, cushions, and straps.
                  5. Shared equipment, i.e. shells, will be sanitized between uses.
                  6. PARP coaches and/or volunteers will take the oars, seat and shell to the dock. They will also assist setting up the equipment. Touch points on the equipment will be wiped down by a volunteer.
                  7. PARP rowing will operate during a rowing window of 5-7pm on Mondays and Thursdays. This window will limit the use of the boathouse to only athletes, volunteers, and coaches associated with PARP. Other GCRA Members will not be permitted to row during these scheduled times.


                  SCULLING ELIGIBILITY

                  1. Members wishing to scull alone MUST have passed the intermediate sculling test.
                  2. Members who have taken the GCRA small boats class and have passed their flip test may do buddy rows with a member who has passed their Intermediate sculling test.
                  3. Members who have not taken a GCRA small boats class or have not passed their flip test may contact a coach to get them started in small boats. The list of approved coaches and their contact information is below:
                    1. Julio Sanchez (239-244-4908)
                    2. Johan McGwire (614-906-1474)
                    3. Kristina Hallof (234-564-7814)
                  4. New members who have significant sculling experience may request to take the intermediate sculling test. Members who have gotten in the required number of buddy rows may request to take the intermediate sculling test.
                  5. The three new singles (The two Fluiddesigns and Hudson) are more fragile than our other shells and we hope to keep them in good racing condition. We are requesting that only those who have significant single rowing experience (two years or more) use these shells. Additionally, we are now requiring that all members that wish to row these shells complete a short on-land orientation/refresher course on boat handling. This brief orientation will cover proper carrying of the boats, best practices with navigating in and out of the racks, and dock safety. We will hold a group session Sunday 6/28 at 10am, or please contact Julio (239-244-4908), Johan (614-906-1474), or Kristina (234-564-7814) to schedule a private session free of charge. This class is mandatory for those wanting to row the new club shells, however we recommend that all members participate as it will be a good refresher for all members of the club. Beginning Monday 6/29, those who have not completed the class will not see the new boats available for check out on their iCrew app. (revised 6/21)


                  1. Anybody who was a member last year may resume rowing on Monday 6/15 without paying dues at this time. There will be a future deadline for dues payments.
                  2. (added 6/21) The finance committee has met and provided the following adjustment for membership fees. The reduction is to reflect the boathouse closure as well as limitation on equipment access. You should see your balance due on the website corrected by the end of the week. Payments must be made by July 1st to continue rowing. Please contact Kyle Smith if there are questions. 
                  • $250 for the Adult Regular Membership and Collegiate Membership
                  • $200 for the PARP Membership
                  • Boat storage fees remain unchanged ($250 for 1x, $350 for 2x)
                  • These fees will remain as stated regardless of whether team boats are allowed later in the year.


                  1. Members are required to use the iCrew mobile app / website to reserve and check in/out shells. There will be no paper log at the boathouse. There will also be no iPad, etc. to use at this time. Members should use their personal devices to access the app.
                  2. A new digital display at the boathouse will show who is on the water and display any boats that are reserved. 
                  3. Use of the system is required for both club and private shells. For safety reasons, we need to know who is out on the water. It will also be used to track private boat rows for the year.
                  4. Members must sign the liability waiver on iCrew before they are allowed to row.
                  5. If you experience problems with the iCrew system, please contact Johan McGwire or John King.
                  6. ***Please watch this video to learn how to sign up and use the iCrew system. The video demonstrates using a web browser. You may choose to use a web browser as well, or you can download the mobile app. The mobile app may look a little different, but overall process is largely the same.***
                  7. Referenced in the video is a registration link and registration code. 

                  POSITIVE CASES IN OUR COMMUNITY (added 6/25):

                  1. In the case of a positive COVID-19 test result (regardless of symptom vs no symptom), individual is to 14 day quarantine and retest. We request that any individual who tests positive notify an officer with the dates they were last at the boathouse.

                  2. Those with close contact of a positive COVID-19 member are also required to quarantine for 14 days. Close contact is defined as those who were less than 6’ for more than 10 min. Officers will attempt to notify anyone who may have been at the boathouse at the same time as a positive testing individual and the general membership will also be notified.

                  3. GCRA will have a 72 hour shutdown after COVID-19 positive individual was at premises. After 72 hours have passed, then a complete wipe down of surfaces with disinfectant is required and all boathouse bay common surfaces will be sanitized.

                  NEW MEMBERS

                  1. New members joining after 6/30 will have the following additional restrictions, due to the heightened demand on the club singles:
                  • New members will have no boat reservation privileges for 1x’s before 10am.
                  • For 2x’s (anytime), or 1x’s after 10am, new members may make 2 reservations per week.
                  • There are no restrictions on rows per week, only the reservations. New members may show up and row an unreserved boat whenever they are available.

                  FAQ – We will continue to add to this list as more questions come in.

                  1. Q. Are larger boats permitted for co-habitants of a household (ie. couple living in same household rows 2x)?   A. Yes, this is permitted effective 6/22. Members must live together in order to row a 2x.  (revised 6/21)
                  2. Q. On the iCrew system, do I need to make a reservation to row?  A. Yes and no. You do not have to reserve a shell ahead of time to row. However, you must go through the reservation page on iCrew every time you want to row. At the bottom, there is a checkbox that says 'Check out on to water immediately'. Members should use this option in the case where they just show up to the boathouse to row, and don't reserve a shell ahead of time. This applies to both club and private shells.
                  3. Q: I removed my private shell from the boathouse and would like to bring it back. When can I do that?  A: If you need to bring your car down in front of the boat bays for this task, you'll need to do this during non-peak rowing hours. We will not allow cars down in front of the bay doors while there a lot of slings out. If you choose to unload in the upper parking lot, that can be done at any time.
                  4. Q: I do not bring my phone into the boathouse with me. How can I use the iCrew system?  A: Our long term plan is to install an iPad for use with the iCrew system. However, we are not doing that right now to eliminate that touch point. Please sign out using your own device. You may sign out before leaving your vehicle if you would like to leave your phone in the car.
                  5. Q: Please clarify the two times per week rule on club boats.  A: The intent of this rule is that we have a lot of members that row club shells and only so many club singles. We want to make sure everyone has an opportunity to get into the boat that they would like to row. Each member may make 2 ahead-of-time reservations per week for a club boat. It is not two reservations per each shell, it is two total reservations per member. If the member wants to just show up to the boathouse and take out an unreserved shell, this does not count towards the two. There is no limit on number of rows per week for members rowing either club or private shells. The limit is on ahead-of-time reservations of club shells. We will be reevaluating this rule based on demand.
                  6. Q: Please explain more about the coached sessions for those with no small boats experience.  A: Sessions with a coach are meant to be in place of the small boats class. They will include basic skills and also the flip test. 2-3 sessions with the coach are likely necessary to cover all the information and to learn the basic skills. Please consult with the coaches directly about their cost of each session. Once the coach feels the member is ready for buddy rows, the participant will be able to do buddy rows with any member that has passed the intermediate sculling test.
                  7. Q: Will there be a small boats class this summer?  A: We are still determining this. We have a wide range of members with different needs. We would like to provide classes that meet the most needs. Some members may have experience but want a refresher, others need to learn altogether. If you may be interested in a class, please put your name on the google doc linked here. We are simply gauging interest at this point.
                  8. Q: Where can I keep my personal items while I am rowing?  A: We recommend that you keep as many things as possible in your vehicle. However, the cubbies and coat hooks are still available for use. We are looking into options to create more storage so we can spread out more.
                  9. Q: Will there be disinfectant spray at the keypads for door entry?  A: Yes
                  10. Q: I know someone with sculling experience who wants to become a member of GCRA. How can I get them started?  A: Please put them in contact with an officer. We will aim to get new members on the water as quick as we can but we are focused first and foremost on making sure our existing members are able to row and return to the boathouse safely. New members will be allowed to begin rowing July 1st.
                  11. Q: I would like assistance arranging for a buddy row.   A: Claire will be helping to organize buddy rows for members returning to sculling after having been off the water for such a long time. Please contact Claire (650-776-7438) if you would be interesting in doing a buddy row or being a buddy to someone needing assistance. Or, please see this list of members who are willing to help with buddy rows.
                  12. Q: What is the row requirement to keep my private rack space this year?  A: The yearly row requirement in order to keep your rack space has been changed to 21 rows for this year due to the missed time from the boathouse closure. A row is defined as one loop to at least the wall and back. Prior reservation is not necessary but you must check out to water and check in for the rows to be accurately counted on iCrew. 
                  13. Q: Will there be a coached row program this summer?  AWe will not be resuming our formal coached row program at this time. Julio Sanchez is available for individual coaching sessions for those who are interested. Contact Julio at 239-244-4908 or julio2row@gmail.com for availability and pricing.
                  14. Q: I am not familiar with the weight classes on the singles. How do I know which would work for me? A: If you navigate to the Shell List on iCrew, you can see the weight class of each shellHere is also a list:  
                  • Flyweight: Wintech Flyweight
                  • Lightweight: Wintech #4, Yang, Yin
                  • Midweight: Gray Fluid, Hudson, Schuster, Wintech #2, Wintech #3
                  • Heavyweight: Griggs, Orange Fluid, Wintech #1 

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