911 Hero & Olympic Gold Medal Rower Jason Read Inspires 200 Guests at Celebration of Rowing Banquet

Greensboro, North Carolina – American hero and Olympic gold medal winning rower Jason Read gave the keynote address at the 2017 Celebration of Rowing banquet held at Sedgefield Country Club on Saturday night and he did not disappoint.

Kiwi Mike Hitchcock

Almost 200 rowers, parents and friends from across the Triad gathered into the Sedgefield Country Club ballroom for what has quickly become the most prestigious social event on the rowing calendar.

High Point Masters rower ‘Kiwi Mike’ Hitchcock, serving as Master of Ceremonies, opened the evening by introducing Greensboro youth rower Benjamin Huitt to give the invocation.

After enjoying a delicious feast, Kiwi Mike then returned to the podium to begin the formal ceremonies, which began with High Point rower Charlotte Curri, who recited “The Oarsman’s Poem” by legendary rowing coach Steve Fairbairn.

Mary Hollingsworth then presented the High Point Parent of the Year award to Conni Curri for her service to the crew. Greensboro parent Julie Higgins then presented the Greensboro Parent of the Year award to Sara Nichols.

Jackie King, last year’s Masters MVP winner and this year’s chair of the Celebration of Rowing banquet, was then invited to the podium to introduce the 2017 recipient – ‘Girl Jeanne’ MacPherson. Congratulations Girl Jeanne – Masters Rower of the Year! Unfortunately, Jeanne could not be at the banquet due to work commitments.

Greensboro coach and 2004 Olympian Lisa Schlenker then talked about the progress of Greensboro Crew and concluded by presenting the Katherine Dickson Award for youth service to Greensboro Crew to MaryBlake Murphy.

Maddie Mullins then presented the Caroline Howard Cup for youth service to High Point Rowing Club to Junior Ognovich. Words can not do justice to the inspiration that Maddie filled the ball room with her theme of excellence and giving to your team mates

Jason Read

Jason Read was then introduced to guests by club founder and High Point Coach Gene Kininmonth, who shared his own personal experience of 911: “As we wondered how we would flee this madness, elsewhere a small number of others were heading straight for it….driving directly into this abyss with full expectations in that moment that the horror would only get worse. Jason Read was one of those few. I am looking forward to hearing Jason’s story from tragedy to triumph this evening.” 

And our keynote speaker did not disappoint.

A volunteer rescue squad fire chief from the age of 21, Read received the call to Ground Zero on the morning of September 11, 2001 shortly after the first plane hit the World Trade Center in New York.

Just three years later Jason Read represented his country again, bringing home the Olympic gold as part of the men’s eight rowing crew at the 2004 Athens games.

After his speech, which received a standing ovation from the 200 guests, rowers and parents alike approached the rowing legend to thank him for sharing his story of inspiration.

Greensboro Crew rowers with Jason Read at the 2017 Celebration of Rowing banquet at Sedgefield Country Club.

Julie Higgins (left) presented the cup for Greensboro Crew parent of the year to Sara Nichols (Ella’s mum) at the 2017 Celebration of Rowing banquet.

(left to right) Claire Howard, Eduarda Blaschke, Olympic champion Jason Read, Maggie McIntyre, and Kate Messick at the 2017 Celebration of Rowing banquet.

Katherine Dickson with Greensboro Crew coach Lisa Schlenker and MaryBlake Murphy at Sedgefield Country Club.

200 rowers, coaches and family members attended the 2017 Celebration of Rowing banquet at Sedgefield Country Club to hear guest speaker Jason Read.

Greensboro Crew Combines with High Point to Win Medals at Head of the South in Georgia

Augusta, Georgia – Greensboro Crew teamed up with High Point Rowing Club  to race as HPG Rowing at the Head of the South regatta over the weekend.

The combination proved to be a powerful one-two punch for HPG with the combined squads coming away with two victories and multiple other medals on the Savannah River.

HPG won the men’s youth lightweight single sculls and then the women’s youth quadruple sculls title at the prestigious season capping event.

All up thousands of rowers of all ages raced in 725 boats raced down the 5,000 meter Savannah River course in Augusta.

Anna Lewis, Lindsay York, Molly HIlemn, and Emily Winberg won bronze in the women’s quad sculls on the Savannah River in Augusta at the 2017 Head of the South.

William Hundley made history for his HPG club in the opening race of the day when he won the youth lightweight singles title. Hundley sculled his shell with ease down the 5,000m winding river course, finishing in the time of 19 minutes 2 seconds, well ahead of Stanton River Boat Club’s Sanjay Mohka.  Atomic Rowing Club’s Benjamin Marshall rounded out the medals. finishing almost 90 seconds later.

HPG then won a pair of silver medals in the middle school boat races. Silver medals could easily have been gold but for the eight being trapped by the earlier masters singles event and forced to stop on the race course. “The crew raced so fast we caught up to the previous event,” recounted High Point’s skillful navigator Collin Greene after the race. “We were forced to stop. It was either that or mow them down like road kill on the Savannah River.”

Greene commended his crew of stroke Matthew Hronich, Ben Huitt, Stratton Murphy, Keagan O’Connell, Ethan Mangum, Abigail Higgins, Samantha Hogsett, and bowseat Hannah Tooley for remaining cool under the pressures of boat racing on a fast flowing river due to the current. 

HPG Rowing’s middle school four-oared crew enjoyed their best race of the Autumn season to also win silver on Saturday morning. Ellie Schroeder set up the perfect rhythm from stroke seat for her crew of William Thompson, Charles Richards, and Savannah Royals. “We had a great race,” said Charles after the race. “We passed some of the middle school eights so we knew we were in serious contention for medals.”

Katherine Messick, Grace Denenny, Eduarda Blaschke, Corinne Alt, Eva Keel, Claire Howard, Holly Spong and Anna Hicks teamed up to win silver at the 2017 Head of the South in Augusta, GA.

HPG’s next medal was won in the women’s junior novice eights event. The all-Greensboro crew of Margaret McIntyre, stroke Katherine Messick, 7 Grace Denenny, 6 Eduarda Blaschke, 5 Corinne Alt, 4 Eva Keel, 3 Claire Howard 2 Holly Spong, and bow Anna Hicks showed poise and grace as they swept their 60 foot long shell with the river current passing half a dozen other crews during the race. 

“It was an incredible feeling rowing so fast down the Savannah with such strong, powerful young women,” said Eva Keel. “It feels like yesterday that we introduced rowing to Greensboro. Now we are introducing Greensboro rowing to the world.”

HPG’s next medal came from an all High Point cast of masters rowers in the Masters women’s eight-oared event. HPG finished third in the age handicapped fleet of crews.

Medals for Masters: Mandy Greene steered straight and true to help her crew win bronze at the 2017 Head of the South. The crew was comprised of Jackie King, Erin Sanders, Shelli York, Alexis King, Laura Tanley, Traci Loria, Jeanne MacPherson, and Beverly Snively.

High Point-Greensboro’s next medals were won in the women’s youth quad sculls event. HPG entered two boats in the event, which finished with the first and third fastest times on the day.

High Point has announced plans to send a women’s quad sculls crew to England’s Henley Royal Regatta in 2018 and competition for seats in the boat has lifted the team to winning standards.

Charlotte Curri, Ainsley Fox, Ashley Walker and Junior Ognovich were in the winning crew, setting the fastest time of any female quad scull on the day. The feat earned them the Igor Grinko Plate, which they were awarded ahead of collegiate and adult crews.

High Point quad scullers Charlotte Curri, Ainsley Fox, Ashley Walker, and Junior OGnovich with Kira Grinko (center) widow of the late great sculling coach Igor Grinko, who coached the United States to silver at the 1996 Olympic Games. The High Point scullers were presented with the Igor Grinko plate for posting the fastest women’s sculling time at the 2017 Head of the South.

Emily Winberg, Anna Lewis, Lindsay York, and Molly Hilemn won bronze in the same event, an indication of the strength of the High Point sculling program.

HPG rowers then won bronze in the mixed U16 eight-oared event and in the last race of the day for HPG William Hundley lead his fellow scullers Harry Capizzi, William Scarpa III, and Govind Harish to bronze in the men’s youth quad sculls event.


The club would like to express its gratitude to Holly Messick and Shelli York for their service as parent chaperones to the team during its weekend travels.

HPG’s novice boy’s eight at the 2017 Head of the South regatta in Augusta, GA.

Greensboro Crew Wins Inaugural Duel With High Point

Lake Brandt, Greensboro, NC – Greensboro Crew showed speed and form on a glorious spring morning to win the inaugural cross-town duel over High Point today.

After racing most of the spring season under the combined HPG Rowing umbrella, the squads broke up by training base location for the two clubs’ first official racing encounter.

With Greensboro still in its first year of racing it was agreed that the races would be between middle school and novice rowers, who are in their first year of rowing. Greensboro Crew boated two crews for the race while High Point had one.

The distance was 1,250 meters.

All three crews jumped out quickly and evenly of at the start. However, within 200 meters one of the Greensboro Crews experienced a near boat stopping crab, which all but ruled them out of contention.

The other Greensboro Crew, coxed by Ella Nichols, did not miss a beat and capitalized on the distraction by taking a enthusiastic move on High Point and pulled ahead to a half boat length lead.

The margin between High Point and Greensboro stayed relatively the same as the crews raced down Lake Brandt toward a rapidly approaching finish line.

Sensing the thrill of victory in the final 200 meters Greensboro Crew raised their cadence in a brilliant burst of speed to win by open water.

The winning Greensboro Crew boat was comprised of coxswain Ella Nichols, stroke Ryan LaPierre, Hadley Cowan, Corinne Alt, Kate Messick, Kennedi Ratcliffe, Kate Cole, Grace Denenny, and Keagan O’Connell,

Greensboro Crew snatches victory over High Point in the inaugural duel on Lake Brandt.

After the initial race all three crews turned around and competed for an additional race over 500m. The winning Greensboro Crew from the previous race locked oars with High Point in the first 10 strokes but the coaches allowed the race to continue.

Ella Nichols’ Greensboro Crew was the quicker boat to recover and soon both crews were quickly making chase against the other leading Greensboro Crew.

Ella’s crew found the speed needed to win the race with the second Greensboro Crew in second place in an almost dead heat with High Point.

The inaugural duel between High Point and Greensboro was all for fun…OK and maybe a little pride as well : )

Greensboro Crew Hosts High Point for Straw Boat Regatta


High Point rowers rig their boats for the Straw Boat Regatta at Lake Brandt.

Greensboro, NC – Greensboro Crew hosted High Point Rowing Club for a series of straw boat races on Lake Brandt on a chilly Saturday morning.

What was initially billed as the inaugural duel between rowers from the two clubs was transformed into a series of races between middle school, high school and Masters rowers racing in crews ‘drawn randomly from a hat.’

“This was a wonderful way for our community of rowers to come together and get to know each other,” said Mandy Greene, who coxed the winning Masters boat.


The winning high school crew were so confident they had their photo taken prior to racing.



The winning middle school crew at the Straw Boat Regatta at Lake Brandt.



The winning Masters Crew at the 2016 Straw Boat Regatta for Greensboro and High Point rowers on Lake Brandt.


The Rowing Clubs of the Triad Cordially Invite You to the 3rd Annual Celebration of Rowing Banquet



Jackie King
Caren York

Michael Brown
EJ Caughlin
Sam Dempsey
Morgan Epling
Gene Kininmonth
Chelsea Klein
Elizabeth Knorr
Maddie Mullins
William Scarpa, III
Charles York

Refreshments with Hors d’oeuvres, Auctions, Dinner, Keynote Speaker, Award Presentations & Triad Rowers’ Hall of Fame Induction

Cocktail attire with ‘team colors’.

B U Y   T I C K E T S

The rowing clubs of the Triad are pleased to announce the 3rd annual Celebration of Rowing banquet, scheduled for Saturday, November 19, at the High Point Country Club.

Co-hosted by High Point Rowing Club, High Point University Rowing, Wake Forest Rowing Club, and Greensboro Crew, the Celebration of Rowing banquet is in its third year of recognizing an appreciation for our sport and our local rowing community. Celebration of Rowing is the one time each year when the Triad rowing community gathers to honor its own and enjoy hearing from a keynote speaker who has made a national impact on the sport of rowing.

This year the banquet will also serve as the occasion to induct Greensboro’s double Olympic gold medalist, Caroline Lind, into the Triad Rowers’ Hall of Fame.

rowing+blazersJack Carlson, author, archaeologist, and national team rower has accepted an invitation to speak at this year’s prestigious gala. Jack is a three-time member of the United States national rowing team. He is also the author of the acclaimed book Rowing Blazers. 

Jack Carlson continues a banquet tradition of introducing world renowned rowing leaders to the Triad. Cutting edge rowing boat maker, Misha Joukowsky, spoke in 2015 and Caroline Lind was the 2014 guest speaker.

B U Y   T I C K E T S 

From left, rowers Adam Alt, Andrew Wright and Charles York pose with two time Olympic gold medal winner Caroline Lind at the 2014 Celebration of Rowing banquet.

From left, rowers Adam Alt, Andrew Wright and Charles York pose with two time Olympic gold medal winner Caroline Lind at the 2014 Celebration of Rowing banquet.

Greensboro Crew Opens First Ever Racing Season at High Point Autumn Rowing Festival with Historic Wins

Greensboro Crew's novice girls crew are all smiles at the 2016 High Point Autumn Rowing Festival.

Greensboro Crew’s novice girls crew are all smiles at the 2016 High Point Autumn Rowing Festival.

High Point, North Carolina – Greensboro Crew marked its first ever Opening Day of a season at 2016 High Point Autumn Rowing Festival in front of thousands of rowers and spectators at Festival Park on Oak Hollow Lake on Saturday.

After a brief delay to the start of racing due to early morning fog, spectators thronged the banks of the lake to watch almost 450 rowers in 151 boats from 20 different clubs, universities and high schools from as far away as Annapolis, MD to Atlanta, GA.

Greensboro Crew, in its first season of rowing boated a larg fleet of crews in youth novice and middle school events and Masters (adults) eights events.

The head racing course for the Festival is one of the most unique in rowing in that it requires the crews to steer around multiple turns including a 180 degree turn ‘Around the Duck.’ The ‘duck’ is an inflated rubber duck almost as tall as a three story building. Unfortunately, the duck tipped over for afternoon racing but this didn’t diminish the enthusiasm of the rowers.

HPRC – 2016 Fall Regatta from Carolina SkyWorks on Vimeo.

Greensboro began its day with Masters racing, where High Point (average age of 50) showed a dashing display of skill and stamina to win the Burton Whicker Cup over Greensboro’s less experienced oarsmen (average age 38). Greensboro’s Masters women (average age 47) finished in a close 5th place in a strong field of crews from High Point, Raleigh and Belmont.

With some racing experience under their belts, Greensboro Masters then turned around later in the afternoon session of boat racing to win the Mixed Masters eights, and the Masters Maiden Eights events in convincing fashion.

Greensboro Crew founder Gene Kininmonth said he was extremely proud of the accomplishments of the squad. “In 7 weeks these rowers went from not knowing how to row, to completing a 3 mile race course.  They took home medals in the Mixed Masters 8+ and the Mixed Maiden 8+ and should be commended for their efforts!”

Greensboros masters mens crew rowed in the clubs first race at the 2016 High Point Autumn Rowing Festival.

Greensboros masters mens crew rowed in the clubs first race at the 2016 High Point Autumn Rowing Festival.


Greensboro Crew Sets Fall Race Schedule


Lake Brandt, North Carolina – Greensboro Crew has set its Fall boat racing schedule, the program’s founder Gene Kininmonth is pleased to announce.

“Our future rowers and parents should particularly take note of the two important upcoming events, which are the Open House and subsequent parent meeting at Lake Brandt,” Coach Gene. These two events will play a vital, informative role for our new families.”

Greensboro Crew is a community rowing program open to adults of all ages and youth ages 12+ attending any Triad area high school. The team is currently accepting new members. 

Crew Open House
Saturday, August 13, 9am-12pm.
Lake Brandt, Greensboro

First Day of Autumn Rowing
August 15, 2016
Lake Brandt, Greensboro

Crew Parent Meeting
Saturday, August 20 at 10am
Lake Brandt, Greensboro

Greensboro/High Point Rowing’s Anniversary Row
Saturday, September 10 at 8am
Bridge to Bridge Race & Potluck Brunch
Oak Hollow Lake, High Point

High Point Autumn Rowing Festival
Saturday, October 1st
Oak Hollow Lake
High Point, North Carolina

Head of the James
Saturday, October 8
Robious Landing
Midlothian, VA

High Point V Greensboro
Saturday, October 22
Lake Brandt
Greensboro, North Carolina

Note, the clocks change 1 hour on Sunday, November 6 and midweek afternoon practice is moved to the Jamestown Indoor Rowing Studio after this date.

2016 Head of the Hooch
Saturday & Sunday, November 5-6
Chattanooga, Tennessee

Head of the South*
Saturday, November 12
Augusta, GA
*select crews only


Rowing is Coming to Greensboro

Greensboro, NC – The founder of High Point Rowing Club is working with Greensboro city officials to start a new rowing program at Lake Brandt for adults and youth ages 12-18. Gene Kininmonth, who founded High Point Rowing Club in 2012 says the new rowing program will be called ‘Greensboro Crew’ and is expected to kick off in just a few weeks.

“Lake Brandt is an ideal venue for rowing and it is within close proximity to a significant number of private and public schools in Greensboro,” says Kininmonth. “Many of High Point Rowing Club’s members are residents of Greensboro and nearby Summerfield and Oak Ridge, so clearly there is demand for the sport. It makes sense for the city to have a rowing program.”

Factor in that since Title IX, the sport of choice of college athletic directors to counter football is women’s rowing. So, there is huge demand at universities for high school students with rowing experience and until now Greensboro high school students have been denied access to one of the most lucrative sports for getting into college.

“Rowing coaches from across the nation are already visiting Greensboro high school athletes that are playing sports such as swimming and track and trying to recruit them to row,” says Kininmonth. “The demand for athletes is huge. Imagine how many more opportunities for Greensboro students there will be with an actual rowing team in the city.”

Greensboro Crew will be open to students age 12 – 18 attending any public or private school in the Greensboro/Summerfield/Oak Ridge areas.

Here’s a look at what rowing looks like in High Point.

Parents or students interested in rowing should contact Gene Kininmonth at contact@greensborocrew.com or by calling (336) 257-9009.

Note to High School Students





email contact@highpointrowing.com