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Community Rowing in Lakewood, Washington

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Do something different this summer.
Get out on the water at Harry Todd Park on American Lake.

Learn to row this summer with Commencement Bay Rowing.
Our Learn to Row classes are open to young people from eighth graders to seniors in high school.
Come join us!

Youth Learn-to-Row Classes

CBRC is a great place to learn to row!

Our sessions:

All classes run from 10:00am to 12:00pm and meet Monday through Thursday at the CBRC Boathouse at Harry Todd Park in Tillicum (Lakewood), Washington.

  • Session One: June 20, 2023 to June 29, 2023
  • Session Two: July 10, 2023 to July 20, 2023
  • Session Three: July 31 - August 10, 2023
The cost for each session is $250.00.

We offer classes that teach the basics of sculling and sweep rowing.

A scull is a thinner, lighter oar. Sculling requires to use of two oars or sculls by the rower and is done in single shells with one rower (Singles), double shells with two rowers (Doubles) or four rower shells called Quads. Doubles and Quads are referred to as team boats. 

A sweep oar is a thicker, longer and heavier oar. Sweep rowing requires the use of one oar per rower with one rower on the port (right) side of the shell and another on the starboard (left) side of the shell. Sweep rowing is done in shells called Pairs (with two rowers), Fours with four rowers and Eights with eight rowers. Fours and Eights also include a coxswain to give the rowing commands and steer the shell. Fours and eights are also referred to as team boats. 

Singles teach balance and patience; team boats teach balance, patience and teamwork.

Safe rowing is the primary focus of Youth Learn to Row. The classes teach all of the following and more:

  • The rowing motion, usually taught on a rowing machine (erg) in our boathouse.
  •  The commands to lift and carry a shell from the boathouse either to canvas slings for adjustment, or safely to the dock to set it in the water. And, of course, remove the shell from the water and carry it safely back to the racks in the Boathouse.
  •  The proper method to attach the sculls or sweep oars to the oarlocks.
  • The proper method for entering and dismounting a shell.

All participants are required to be able to swim any stroke for 10 minutes and then immediately tread water for 10 minutes. This is to ensure a rower's safety should their shell capsize.

Please download and complete the CBRC Declaration of Swimming Ability and give it to the instructor on the first day of your session.

We encourage youth to learn both sweep rowing and sculling to get a good foundation for joining our Juniors program.  Young people who complete one of our introductory classes, or have previous rowing experience, are welcome to join. The Juniors Club trains year-round. Information about the summer program and program costs can be read on our Juniors Summer Season page. 

Select a session from the registration section above to start your summer rowing adventure.

Support CBRC by donating here.

Contact Us


Facebook: @combayrow

Instagram: @combayrow

Twitter: @combayrow

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 99512
Lakewood, WA 98496

Boathouse Address:
8928 N Thorne Lane SW
Lakewood, WA 98498

Contact Us


PO Box 99512 
Lakewood, Washington 98496

Email: [email protected]


PO Box 99512 
Lakewood, Washington 98496

Email: [email protected]
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