Minutes for Annual Board Meeting – December 6th, 2021
Present: Erin Andrew, Mary Haffner, Drew Story
Meeting started at 4pm
1. Financial Status
The club has received several donations of equipment this past year including new racing boats – both kayaks and a sprint canoe – and many brand new sprint kayak paddles. Additionally, the club has had success with financial fundraising and currently has enough savings to cover the basic operating costs of our club for at least two years with our current overhead.
We have had close to 30 different people come to our beginning paddler classes since March of this year. Four people, all adults, appear interested in membership and have made many repeat visits on Saturdays. (Some of our paddlers from this past summer may also be interested when the water warms up again.) The club also had a new member join in January who has had experience at the 2007 Junior Worlds paddling kayak.
We’ve learned a great deal from our first paddling classes including the need to keep the number of beginners to not more than two per experienced paddler/coach. Rick and Joanne Diebold helped with some of our larger classes this summer, along with Ian Ross from the Washington Canoe Club.
The club website now has an appointment application that allows for anyone to sign up for a Saturday “Beginning Paddler” session on weekends when one or both of the coaches are available. The sessions are limited to a maximum of four people at a time, and while our classes are offered free of charge, we do now require a $10 deposit which is refunded upon attendance. Without the deposit, we had several people sign up for a session only to not show up. Come March, we will begin recruitment in earnest of local youth again and hopefully also gain additional adult paddlers.
3. New Harbor Access
With the assistance of the Ventura Harbor Master, and the strong support of the Portside Apartment and Marina, we have a new access point for paddling. There is a small craft dock on the southern side of the Portside Apartment complex at the end of Navigator Drive we now have permission to use. This location could well be a home for us long term as it provides a sheltered pool and quiet dock to launch from in addition to free parking. Many thanks to the folks at Portside!
4. Status of the American Canoe Association
There has been a great deal of – for lack of a better word – drama from the American Canoe Association (ACA) this past summer with a Board member attempting to force the sprint and slalom community from the organization. The reason for this push was largely due to the need to increase athlete representation on all empowered policy and funding committees due to changes with the Ted Stevens Act. This ACA Board member’s efforts were not successful and he has since resigned and left the organization.
This drama has increased the involvement and desire to be better organized of both the coaches and officials associations. Drew has been very active with the Sprint Coaches Association and will continue to do so in the coming year. Nationals will be held near Cincinnati, Ohio the first week of August in 2022. (World and Junior World Team Trials will likely be held at Lake Natoma near Sacramento in April.)
5. Questions and Comments from the Board
Erin asked if we might consider having an AirBNB experience which would include a paddling session for a fundraiser in the future. Sounds interesting – certainly! AirBNB may be an Olympic sponsor, too.
Board members wanted to know if the growth of the club is going as the coaches would like it to. For the most part, yes. While it would be great to have additional paddlers, especially U18, U16, and even U14 age groups, with the pandemic still very much alive, we would rather grow slowly and safely. So long as we continue to move in the right direction as an organization, things are good – and we are moving in the right direction.
Meeting adjourned at 4:38pm.