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MEETING REQUESTED WITH COUNTY PARKS TO DISCUSS USING SPRAIN LAKE FOR BOATING...
Release Date: July 21, 2008

I am planning to request a meeting with the county to discuss the possibility of using SprainLake as a site for a boathouse for Greenburgh and Yonkers. SprainLake is a beautiful lake – not used by the community. Part of the lake is located within the town of Greenburgh.  I am suggesting that the county open the lake up to rowing, kayaking and canoeing on a trial basis this fall on selected dates. ManhattanCollege is interested in this initiative and might be interested in either purchasing or renting space. This could generate revenue for WestchesterCounty, reduce our taxes and provide enhanced recreation for students and adults. Yonkers City Council President Chuck Lesnick has been pushing for recreation boating on the Sprain for years. I believe that the concept deserves support and follow up. It’s unfortunate that this lake is not being taken advantage of.
PAUL FEINER
Greenburgh Town Supervisor
 
Dear Mr. Feiner.
 
Thank you for meeting with me the other day regarding the use of the Sprain Lake as a site for a boathouse for the Greenburgh and Yonkers communities.  Rowing is expanding exponentially across the country and additional facilities are desperately needed. 
 
When I started rowing at Manhattan College in the late 1970's, college programs and the New York Athletic Club were the only two options for someone looking to row.  I was fortunate enough to earn a spot at the NYAC and was able to continue after college but when I stopped competing, there was no place to row for recreation.  
 
Recently, two new programs have been started, one on the Harlem River and the other on Glenn Island and I have been able to return to the sport.  These programs are open to both high school students and masters level rowers and are having a positive impact for 
many children.  Both of these programs are open to all comers and also provide community outreach programs for children with limited means.  However, these programs are also almost full to capacity in the number of rowers they can accommodate.  
 
The Sprain Lake has the potential to be a world class course.  It is long and wide enough and is not tidal.  I think that the entrance to the lake at Jackson Ave would be ideal since there is ample land available for parking and a boathouse without encroaching on private residents.  Traffic would also not be a big issue especially since most programs are run early in the morning and immediately after school thereby avoiding rush hour traffic.
 
I have spoken to several rowing clubs and they are all excited about the possibility of another place to row and race.  I would like to enlist your help in organizing a mini regatta in the fall to assess the suitability of the course.  The teams invited would provide their own equipment, launches and the officials to create a safe environment for the rowers.  We would also try to get the race certified by the US Rowing Association for insurance purposes.
 
I know that you will do all you can to help this happen and I look forward to working with you to make this dream come true.
 
Sincerely,
 
Vinny Houston
      
 

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