Having gathered a hefty list of prospective oarsmen and women, the next priority was to put on great taster sessions to give them a first taste of rowing and get them hooked. Given the bigger than expected turnout, extra sessions were planned, with a carefully planned pipeline of tour of a boat, stretching, demonstration on ergs followed by a coached session on the water.
With all members of the club chipping in and manning the stations (or boats), the gates swung open in anticipation of swarms of fresh-faced newcomers. Conditions were kind to us. The water was calm, wind was light and skies were blue.
As attendees began to arrive and feed into the pipeline, crews were formed and Novices were sent on their maiden paddles. Averting any disasters and with plenty of enthusiasm from coaches and Novices alike, the day was a complete success. Bringing boats back in at the slip and being met with broad smiles and sweat-streamed brows was immensely satisfying.
After weeks of planning and effort, worry and panic, recruitment was officially a success. In the subsequent sessions, attendance has remained much higher than in recent years, giving us both the numbers and talent to begin forging strong competitive crews for the season ahead.