“Steeped in History and positioned on the Banks of the river Shannon sits a club that has grown through time since first founded in 1837”
Saturday, 29th April 2023, saw our unique rowing club of 140 members, share in celebration it’s official opening surrounded by both young and old, past and present members, invited guests, sponsors and the wider rowing community all supported by our town of Athlone..
After decades of planning, committee room meetings and development teams putting in long hours of hard work, Athlone Boat Club finally officially opened its doors. The entire membership was delighted to welcome Rowing Ireland’s back to back World and European Champion and Olympian Sanita Puspure to officially cut the ribbon on the day. The time that Sanita gave to our membership, most especially our junior teams, will live with them for a long time. Thank you Sanita..
The weather was kind on the day and one might say the child of Prague was a club member of Athlone Boat Club as the sun shone for the entire occasion. Our club’s President, Paul Donovan, his supporting committee and coaching team were delighted to welcome all that travelled from far and wide to be part of this historical piece of history for the club. To feel the energy and see the emotion from those that had waited years to see this day was moving. Both young and old shared an occasion that will be talked about in the clubhouse for many years to come.
Recognising years of commitment to Committee and Board Members, Paul Gallen and Eamon Fahy were welcomed and acknowledged by all, which was truly deserved for the hours and hours of painstaking work both have given to the club. Both of these gentlemen will be spoken about for decades to come on their commitment and dedication to Athlone Boat Club. Rowing Ireland’s President, Neville Maxwell, applauded the work that had been done by all involved in delivering such an exceptional facility to the community of rowing in the midlands, and shared what he witnessed as a club at regattas where Athlone Boat Club members race hard but equally have lots of fun. Complementing the success of our club on the national and international stage, Neville noted that the club was a credit to all involved and looked forward to seeing the next part of our journey.
Westmeath Cathaoirleach, Cllr Aengus O’Rourke, paid tribute to the vision of those involved in taking Athlone Boat Club to another level with the delivery of an exceptional building that he sees each day as he passes in the car and committed to proposing to the Council, a civic event to celebrate all that Athlone Boat Club offers to the town of Athlone. A rewarding occasion that yet again places our sport in the limelight of sport within Athlone.
To everyone that has been part of supporting this historic occasion, on behalf of our membership, our committee, our coaching team and all that support our club, thank you so much.
We look forward to 2037 where we will celebrate 200 years in Rowing..
Nick Friel – Athlone Boat Club Captain