More than 20 years ago, Washington-Lee High School's renowned rowing
coach, Charlie Butt, began advocating the construction
of a boathouse on the Virginia shore of the Potomac. He sparked an effort
which continues today.
is no question about the need for a new boathouse. Currently over 1,600
local high school students participate in competitive rowing, making this
one of the largest rowing communities in North America. Over 500 of those
students, representing fourteen schools, row out of the Thompson Boat Center in Washington,
D.C. Severe overcrowding in the boathouses on the D.C. side of the river
has forced many water enthusiasts -- from high school crews to kayakers
and canoeists -- to seek distant launching sites, some more than an hour's
An impressive array of talent came together to create a coalition that
has been working toward the creation of a rowing facility since 1991.
Their work resulted in the citizens of Arlington voting to support a
$1 million commitiment of bond funds to establish the facility. The Arlington
Boathouse Foundation is working to raise funds to ensure that the boathouse
becomes reality. The project will be constructed using the best environmental
practices, and one of its major goals is to increase awareness of the
The Arlington Boathouse Coalition is a local citizen group comprised
of alumni of the Arlington high school rowing programs, their parents
and neighbors, and others who believe in the idea of Arlington access to the Potomac River.
The Arlington Boathouse Foundation, registered with the State
Corporation Commission in 1991, is a legal entity that has been established
to receive and disburse money in support of an Arlington Community Boathouse.
The current Directors are:
- Erik Meyers- President
- Paul Holland- Vice President
- Ann Tuntundjian- Treasurer
- Jerilyn Levi- Asst. Treasurer
- George Kirschbaum- Secretary
- Carole Robinson
- Robert Swennes
- Edward Holland
- Vaughan Bowen
- Nancy Butt Packard
- Charles Veatch
current effort for an Arlington boathouse was inspired by the vision of
the late Charlie Butt to build a boathouse for school and community rowing
on the Rosslyn shoreline. Charlie began the crew program at Washington-Lee
High School in 1949. During the 42 years of his coaching career there
he turned out 35 national championship crews, including 13 in the boys
varsity eight. Charlie took eight of his crews to the Henley Royal Regatta
at Henley-on-the-Thames, England, winning the Princess Elizabeth Cup in
1964 and 1969. In 1991 Charlie organized a group of rowers, parents, coaches
and other supporters into the Arlington Boathouse Coalition.
In addition to building Washington-Lee's program, Charlie was instrumental
in starting crew programs at numerous other area high schools and helped
establish programs at Georgetown and George Washington Universities in
the late 1960s.
Over the years, Charlie coached the summer youth program at the Potomac
Boat Club, coached US Junior teams and helped to establish the Sandy
Run Regional Park rowing facility on the Occoquan Reservoir. He brought
his love of rowing to countless students and has inspired many to coach.
Charlie Butt himself was a great coach, and a tireless friend and asset
to the rowing community.
a question or comment?
Please contact us at the address below.
Arlington Boathouse Foundation
P.O. Box 7458
Arlington, Va 22207
or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Arlington Boathouse Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
A financial statement is available upon written request from the Virginia Office of Consumer Affairs.