Getting to Practice

The boat house is about a 10 minute drive from Pioneer. We will make every effort to facilitate coordination among parents some sort of carpool, especially for novice rowers.  We understand that this is critical for some families, and encourage parents of younger rowers to contact one another as soon as they can.   The roster will be distributed as soon as possible at the start of the season, which you can use to identify those in your neighborhood.  You may also send a message to the group email list noting your location and the days you can drive, to find compatible drivers.   It is also useful if a novice parent steps in organizes the practice carpooling, using the aforementioned rosters and email lists to get the ball rolling.

Rowers driving to practice by themselves (non-carpool) should park in North Bandemer off of Barton Dr and walk the path in (3minutes). This is to free up space and encourage carpooling. Huron is already doing this, so we can help out by doing the same. It will be enforced with erg work if the procedure is abused.

Athletes that do not have a 7th hour can also utilize the AATA bus services.  The buses from Pioneer to Blake Transit Center downtown are the 7 and 16, and they run every 15-30 minutes, a few minutes apart.   From Blake, the 13 heads toward (but does not go all the way to) the boathouse; get off at Summit and Main and walk the remaining few blocks.  It is also possible to jog or run from Blake Transit Center and make it to practice on time, fully warmed up.

Note: The Regatta Carpool Coordinator seasonal volunteer is responsible for local regatta carpooling only, not carpooling to practice.

Regatta Travel

Anytime we travel, the team is the responsibility of PRC, and to that end we oversee and transport the entire team as a group. For bus or carpool events, the basic protocol is the same:

  • The event begins when rowers show up at the pickup location (typically the Pioneer flagpole entrance, unless the lot is in use for a U-M football game or other large event, in which case the alternative location will be announced) and ends at drop off.  All members of the team must be present for the entirety of the event, per AAPHSC Code of Conduct, paragraph 3.
  • All team members must report to the transport location within the arrival and departure window, generally a fifteen minute time frame, and check in with the team captains (for carpool) or chaperones (for bus travel). ANYONE WHO MISSES THIS WINDOW IS THEN RESPONSIBLE FOR THEIR OWN TRANSPORTATION. We will not wait. If a rower misses the bus/carpool, it is more than likely they will not be allowed to participate in the event.
  • Conversely, you must plan for a timely pick up of your child.  It is extremely discourteous to force chaperones to remain at your convenience until you collect your child.

Carpooling to Regattas

For local events, we use organized carpools as an economical method to transport the team.

  • Regatta carpool driver signups are posted on the hotel/travel page and emailed to parents. These signups allow parent drivers (never students) to indicate how many team members they can take, including their own child (if desired). The regatta carpool coordinator will ensure that this total number of available seats is enough to transport the whole team.
  • On the morning of the event the team members check in with team captains at the pickup location and sort themselves into groups of riders. Sometimes they will sort this out ahead of time so they are certain to ride with specific people. EVERY team member is to show up at the pickup location.
  • Carpool drivers check in with the carpool coordinator within the arrival and departure window, find the correct number of riders (EXACTLY the number you signed up to take, unless the carpool coordinator asks you to do something different), report the names of riders and your cell phone number to the coordinator, and drive to the regatta.   Note that your child may be riding with someone else.
  • At the end of the event, after the coach has dismissed the team, take the SAME group of athletes back to the Ann Arbor pickup location, asking them to call ahead for rides home from the pickup location.
  • When carpooling, every team member must travel both TO and FROM the event in the SAME vehicle.  The driver must remain at the regatta site until all their riders are present and accounted for.  It is NOT ACCEPTABLE for riders to decide to ride home in different vehicle and ask someone else to tell their driver.  Such a switch can occur ONLY if the two drivers speak directly to each other.  Otherwise, the chance of leaving someone behind is too great.

Busing to Regattas

For regattas that are more than an hour or so away, we use charter buses for all team members and chaperones. Spectators and volunteers (other than chaperones) do not ride the bus, and must transport themselves to and from the regattas.

  • Team members check in with chaperones, stow luggage where directed (usually underneath the bus), and board the designated bus.
  • Follow chaperone instructions at all times.
  • Be courteous to those who wish to sleep or study.
  • For multi-day events, the bus will be used to transport the team between the hotel and regatta site.  You must ensure that you are in the right place at the right time so that you are present for your events.
  • Keep the bus clean, including a final clean-out at the end of the trip.

Exceptions to Team Transport:

  • Exceptions from team transport can be made by prior coach notification only (2-3 days preferred), and for limited and extra-ordinary reasons (testing, marching band, post-regatta engagements). These exceptions must also be brought to the attention of the lead chaperone (for bus travel) or carpool coordinator (for carpool travel), as well as individual carpool drivers when relevant.
  • The answer to the following questions will always be No:
    “Can I just take my child home straight from the regatta?”
    “Can I take my child home once they are done racing?”
    “Can I bring my child later since they don’t race until the afternoon?”
  • The answer to the following questions will likely be Yes:
    “My child has an ACT/SAT/AP test that morning. Can I bring them afterward?”
    “We have another event in [regatta location]. Can I take my child after the full completion of the regatta so that we may attend?”
    “We will already be in [regatta location] for another event. Can I bring my child to the regatta at the time when the team is scheduled to arrive?”
  • We will be cooperative with extenuating circumstances. If something comes up which poses a problem, please let us know so we can work with you.

I hope this gives you insight to the method behind our madness. This procedure is done largely to simplify the cat-wrangling of moving 90 teenagers, but also to instill in them the solid team work ethic that these regattas are gradually teaching them. We absolutely have your child’s best interest in mind.

We travel as a team, we work as a team, we bond as a team.

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