Author Archives: M. H.

Meet the Paddlers, Part 2

In the last post, we presented two of the volunteers who make everything that happens at NBBC happen! From sunset paddles to bridge-shaking parties, what we do is powered by our amazing member-volunteers. On and off the water, our trip leaders, trip assistants, and program volunteers make it possible for NBBC to fulfill its mission: enabling and advocating for human-powered boating on the waterways bordering North Brooklyn.

Now meet a couple more: our two Klauses (in German: zwei Klauseln)! If you see Klaus, Klaus, or any of our trip leaders and volunteers around the club or out on the water, say hi, and thank them for lending their time and skills to keep North Brooklyn boating!

And visit the new Trip Leaders and Volunteers page on the NBBC website to learn more about them!

Klaus R.

Safety Committee coordinator
Canoe trip leader
Kayak trip leader

Klaus R. meets the winter head-on

Klaus R. meets the winter head-on


Q. What kind of background and experience with paddling did you have before you joined, in general and in NYC specifically?
A. Born in North Germany right between the Baltic sea and Atlantic, I grew up with fishing boats, racing one-man sail boats and rowing sculls. Ten years ago, I discovered NYC waters with the Manhattan Sailing School, getting certified for keelboats, but I actually never thought of paddling the East River in kayaks or canoes until I joined NBBC.

Q. Tell us one of your favorite stories about a particular club trip.
A. I recently joined a winter paddle to look for seals. Paddling out from Coney Island creek, it started to snow, and at some point the only sight of land left was our destination, Swinburne, a tiny artificial island south of the Verrazano Bridge. The horizon was hidden by a white curtain, and the water completely calm, when a group of seals popped up, curiously watching us. We navigated back by compass.

Klaus steers the Public Paddle

Klaus steers the Public Paddle

Klaus S.

Canoe trip leader
Kayak trip leader

Q. How did you first find North Brooklyn Boat Club? What’s your origin story as a club member?
A. I live ten minutes away — so gaining access to a fleet of sleek decked ocean kayaks made my becoming a NBBC founding member a total no-brainer. I hugely enjoy the vastness of personal space our local waterways have to offer. And if that sounds like I’m of solitary inclination . . . well, maybe, but being a trip leader over the past four seasons has certainly kept me in touch with a great community and hugely motivates me to keep learning and to share the wonderful experience.
Q. Tell us one of your favorite stories about a particular club trip.
A. So my favorite paddle is quite reliably the one I’m on right now — no matter how long or short. But one of the best things at NBBC is hanging out at the fire pit after the paddle (or even instead of a paddle). Ask me there, and I’ll be more inclined to recapture a story or two…

Klaus S. at Liberty

Klaus S. at Liberty

Meet the Paddlers, Part 1

Everything that happens at NBBC, from sunset paddles to bridge-shaking parties, is powered by our amazing member-volunteers. On the water, our trip leaders, trip assistants, and program volunteers make it possible for NBBC to fulfill its mission: enabling and advocating for human-powered boating on the waterways bordering North Brooklyn.

We want you all to know who they are! If you see any these people around the club or out on the water, say hi, and thank them for volunteering their time and skills to keep North Brooklyn boating! So there’s a new Trip Leaders and Volunteers page on the NBBC website. Here are a couple of the fantastically skilled and generous people that you can learn about there:

Patterson

Canoe Programming Coordinator
Canoe trip leader

Patterson shows wildlife thriving in the Living Dock to a class from St. Joseph College

Patterson shows off the wildlife thriving in the Living Dock

Q. How did you first find North Brooklyn Boat Club? What’s your origin story as a club member?
A. I discovered the Club at an art event in Whale Creek, called the Newtown Creek Armada, and picked up a card. I joined as some of the last containers were being delivered and found a lot of trips to join, both kayak and canoe.

Q. What kind of background and experience with paddling did you have before you joined, in general and in NYC specifically?
A. Zero, pretty much. As a paddler, I am a happy product of NBBC.

Learning is good!

Q.Tell us about a favorite route or trip that you like to use for club paddles.
A. I am one of those who like going places where you can get out of the boats and do something. Going to Costco or the Greenmarket at Socrates Park embodies everything good about human-powered boating. Hallets Cove beach is an easy pick for that.

And by far the majority of my trips are on Newtown Creek, where the Club is ideally situated as a launch point. The best trips are our weekly Summer Birdwatching trips, definitely. I have become a citizen-scientist and learned enough to be a tour guide — I’m no Mitch Waxman or Willis, but I can introduce people to the Creek if they haven’t been before. Newtown Creek is my backyard, and it’s an endlessly fascinating place to visit.

Vincent

Vincent B. in his kayak

Vince in his kayak


Kayak Programming Coordinator
Kayak trip leader

Q. What kind of background and experience with paddling did you have before you joined?
A. I had kayaked and canoed before in the Adirondacks with my family as well as fished from a kayak in the Long Island Sound. I had never had any skills training but, being a surfer from Long Island, I grew up loving the water and picking sand out of my ears. I was looking for group of people that shared a belief in environmental protection of our marine ecology. I found it paddling in Brooklyn, NY!

Q. How did you become a trip leader?
A. I wanted to take on a leadership role to bring kayaking to more club members. The trips leaders started me as a trip assistant familiarizing myself with the local waterways. I took it upon myself to get American Canoe Association trip-leading training and started planning and leading trips with other trip leaders until I was able to do it on my own.

Vince surfs it in!

Vince surfs it in!


Learn more about Patterson, Vincent, and other super-skilled and endlessly enthusiastic NBBCers on the Trip Leaders and Volunteers page!

Patterson, Willis, and Brian with a visiting class

Global Canoe Action at the Convention on Biological Diversity

In April 2016, the North Brooklyn Boat Club joined Global Canoe and Alianza Mesoamericana de Pueblos y Bosques (AMPB) in an action on the East River to tell the world leaders who had gathered at the United Nations to sign the Paris Climate Accords that they must not forget the voices and lives of the indigenous peoples of the world. In preparation for COP13, the Convention on Biological Diversity to be held next month in Cancun, Mexico, Global Canoe has released a video from the Earth Day Global Canoe action:

For COP13, Global Canoe has released this statement:

December 11, Cancún, Mexico
Join the Global Canoe!

We, indigenous peoples and local communities, come to the Biodiversity to tell world leaders that we are the #GuardiansOftheForest and Biodiversity.

Because of this, we demand to be part of the strategies, public policies and programs of defense, conservation and protection of forests and life.

Join the Global Canoe, along with leaders and representatives of indigenous peoples and local communities in an action that seeks to highlight the important role of communities in the protection of biodiversity.

Help us by sharing our video. If you are in Cancun you can be part of the Global Canoe action.

More info here:

This action is organized by AMPB, Greenpeace México, and Coica Amazonía
#GuardiansOfTheForest ​#WeRWarriors

North Brooklyn Boat Club is proud to have been a part of the Earth Day Global Canoe action in New York and stands beside AMPB, Greenpeace México, and Coica Amazonia in Cancún.

Listen to indigenous voices

Listen to indigenous voices


#GlobalCanoe

#GlobalCanoe

NBBC Annual Member Meeting: Wednesday, November 30, 7:00

Big canoe at sunset, July 2014

Paddle down to the Annual Meeting!


The North Brooklyn Boat Club’s Annual Member Meeting is this Wednesday!

North Brooklyn Boat Club Annual Meeting
Wednesday, November 30
7:00 PM!!
The Wythe Hotel Basement Screening Room
Free
Cash bar
80 Wythe Avenue at N. 11th St.
Williamsburg, Brooklyn
Map

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The North Brooklyn Boat Club has had a wonderful year. There have been more than 120 different paddles, some as short as down to Bushwick Inlet and some as long and adventurous as our annual circumnavigation of Manhattan. The club has invited the neighborhood to environmental-education events and to party the night away in the Broadway Stages Boatyard. We have paddled with the public and repaired the paddles that needed it!

And all these things are possible only because of our members. Indeed, NBBC exists only through its members. And the Annual Meeting is every member’s chance to find out about what has gone on all year and talk about what the future holds. Come add your voice to the conversation.

Hope to see you there!

Williamsburg sunset paddle, September 20, 2016

The meeting is *that* way!