Olympic level rowing returns to Cincinnati region this summer

Olympic level rowing returns to Cincinnati region this summer
Mark Conwenhoven, of the Vesper Boat Club, celebrates his win in the men's single scull 2000 meter race at the 2015 USRowing Club Nationals at Harsha Lake, East Fork State Park, Clermont County. (Photo: Enquirer file photo)

BETHEL, OH (FOX19) - The Cincinnati region will be the center of attention in the world of rowing this summer when the USRowing National Championship returns to Lake Harsha in East Fork State Park.

The park hosted the championship rowing event 2015 to 2017 and will again July 9-14 and in 2020 and 2021.

The USRowing National Championship will be a special event featuring North America’s top natural rowing course and showcasing the top competitors in America aiming for the Tokyo Olympics in 2020.

The 2017 USRowing event hosted in Cincinnati brought nearly 2,000 rowing athletes to the region representing 114 clubs from 28 states and several international countries.

The championship is expected to bring future Olympians to the region and have an economic impact of $1.5 million to $2 million.

“We are excited to bring our summer national championship event back to Cincinnati’s Lake Harsha,” said USRowing CEO Patrick McNerney in a prepared statement. “Lake Harsha has a long and storied history of hosting some of our nation’s top events. We look forward to working with the Clermont County Convention and Visitors Bureau to put on spectacular regattas for our athletes, coaches and fans, and to continue to invest in a great venue at East Fork State Park.”

The Clermont County Convention and Visitors Bureau will be the primary host of the event, with support from the Cincinnati USA Convention & Visitors Bureau and various regional partners.

The event is expected to fill more than 2,000 hotel rooms in Hamilton and Clermont Counties.

“Clermont County and the Cincinnati region are honored to partner with USRowing in hosting the National Championships for the next three years,” said Jeff Blom, President of the Clermont County CVB.

“Our hotels, restaurants, attractions and retail shops in the region all enjoy increased business during the week-long competition. We look forward to hosting USRowing events for many years to come.”

“Partnering with the Clermont County CVB on this event demonstrates the collaborative spirit and shared vision of our region’s tourism and hospitality community,” added Julie Calvert, President and CEO of the Cincinnati USA CVB. “Our entire region will feel the energy and impact that an event of this caliber can bring.”

Most recently known as the USRowing Club National Championships, the event will drop “Club” from its title moving forward and be re-branded as the USRowing National Championships to reflect the re-integration of the elite-level race categories.

This summer’s events will be expanded to six days and will crown national champions in the U17, U19, intermediate and elite/senior categories.

The Queen City is no stranger to championship regattas. Harsha Lake, which features a 2,000 meter, seven- lane buoyed course, hosted the USRowing Club National Championships from 2015-2017, USRowing Youth Nationals from 1995-2010 and National Collegiate Rowing Championships from 1982-1996.

In addition, this venue hosts the yearly Midwest Junior Championship and Cincinnati Junior Rowing Club High School Championship Regatta in the spring.

Those interested in participating, volunteering or sponsoring the USRowing National Championships, can contact the Clermont County Convention and Visitors Bureau at 513-732-3600 or www.visitclermontohio.com/usrowing.

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