Royal Canadian Henley Course Ready to Shine

nancy storrs


Nancy Storrs with Pachi during the recent Pan Am Torch Relay which passed through the City of St.Catharines.  

One of the major rowing courses of North American is receiving a facelift in anticipation of the Pan American Games that are coming to Toronto next month.

The Royal Canadian Henley Rowing Course, site of 14 men’s and women’s rowing events at the Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games, has received funding from the federal government as part of their $500 million commitment to the Toronto 2015 Pan Am and Parapan Am Games.

The Government of Canada has committed more than $714,000 towards renovations to the facility with the City of St. Catharines contributing a total of $364,883 to the project.

“It’s an honour for our city to be hosting the rowing competitions at the Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games,” declared Rick Dykstra, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Member of Parliament for St. Catharines.

“The Government of Canada is proud to have invested in this historic course which will not only allow Canadians to compete here at home during the Year of Sport in Canada, but also enable them to continue to train for decades to come.”

The mayor of St. Catharines, Walter Sendzik, also expressed his support for the government’s commitment saying that the investment will carry a legacy value for generations to come.

“This is an historic event for St. Catharines,” Mayor Sendzik continued. “With some of the world’s best rowers visiting our hometown this summer, this is an opportunity to showcase our city and the Royal Canadian Henley course as a world-class sports tourism destination.”

The improvements, which include the installation of a new lane marking system (buoys), the replacement of a bridge linking the rowing facility to the mainland, and improvements of the entranceway to the spectator grandstands, will not only benefit the Pan Am regatta, but all of the regattas that call Henley Island home on a yearly basis.

With a busy summer underway, the city of St.Catharines is abuzz with excitement, especially in anticipation of the upcoming multi-nation Games.

Contributing to the excitement was the recent Pan Am torch relay that reached the city on June 20 during its cross-country tour.  Many notable members of the St. Catharines rowing community were torchbearers, including Nancy Storrs, longtime coach (pictured) and Bill Schenck, who, along with Tim Rigby, has been volunteering much of his time as Co-Chair of the Pan Am Regatta. 

The Pan American rowing regatta is taking place in St.Catharines, Ontario from July 11-15.

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