47th CCA Downriver Race

-- by Star Mitchell

Sycamore Islander, July 2002


Peter Meleney and Larry Heilman, in their open C-2.
For the forty-seventh year Sycamore Island hosted the CCA Downriver Race on June 15, 2002. Tired racers were greeted at the take-out by Marcia and George Loeb and offered delicious cookies and ice-cold lemonade. Larry Heilman and his friend Peter Meleney ran the race as non-competitors in a tandem canoe.

David Winer scurried about taking pictures with his trusty camera. Carl Linden, Marcia and George Loeb awarded racers medals and certificates. Our interim caretaker, Victor Crook, did an excellent job of ferrying hordes of people across the river and filling in for all odd assignments.

A C-1 at the finish line (our ferry rope).
John F. Stapko did his usual behind the scenes problem solving of any and all loose ends that needed to be fixed, while his son, John G. spent a great deal of the day relieving Victor on the ferry. At the take-out, Phoebe Hamill (waiting list) retrieved racers' bibs in exchange for a race T-shirt. Sherry Pettie (waiting list) worked at Great Falls prior to the start of the race, as well as coming to the island for more assignments.

Fifteen dedicated people volunteered to be safety boats on the river. They were: Gus Anderson, Peter Dragon, Steve Ettinger, Frank Fico, Michael Hoon, John Lentz, Jim Long, Jim Mallard, Jean McAulay, Judy and Rod Pitts, Diana Rodum, Craig Rovelstad, Kathleen Sengstock, and last but not least, Dave Smith, owner of Potomac Outdoors, who ran safety and also provided us with four Marine Band radios.

Robin Siegel and Bob Bofinger started racers at Great Falls. Ernie Katz, Steve Seeber, Bob Bofinger, and Donna Perlmutter worked tirelessly timing and calculating racers’ runs. Cathy Collins, Darrell Helton, and Brian Krasney signed in racers at Great Falls, as well as coming to the island for more assignments.

The Loebs dispensed much needed sustenance to contestants.
Donna Perlmutter did an excellent job as Race Chairperson with all of the many behind-the- scenes jobs involved in organizing the race and planning numbers for T-shirts and lunch.

I wish to thank all of the dedicated people who took their time to come and help with the race. If I have failed to mention anyone by name that helped, I deeply apologize. The BCE and CCA coordinators and I especially wish to thank the Sycamore Island Club for playing host for the 47th consecutive running of the CCA Downriver Race from Great Falls to Sycamore Island.