Winter Workshops Keep Things Warm at NBBC

We’re whiling away the winter with a wide array of workshops at NBBC!

It’s a problem as ancient as boating and cold weather: what to do until it is warm enough to get back out on the water again! This winter, we’ve filled the cold days with workshops, classes, and other activities in our new enclosed space, the Crystal Shed. Built by NBBC member-volunteers, the Crystal Shed is warm and welcoming when the winter winds blow!

The NBBC Nautical Knitters have made the Crystal Shed their home this winter!

Nautical Knitting in the new Crystal Shed, January 2018

Their pattern (ahem) is to meet every two weeks, steered through the winter days by Monica and Heather. In the Crystal Shed, they have found new ways to combine their interests:

Keep an eye on the NBBC Calendar for more chances to join Nautical Knitters in action!

Build Your Own Rescue Gear Workshop

On a cold February Saturday, the wood stove in the Crystal Shed was fired up to keep warm a group of trip leaders and trip assistants as they expanded their kits by crafting rescue gear.

Led by Chris Raab of Tuktu Paddles, who has also worked with NBBC’s Canoe Committee as a trainer for trip leaders, the group constructed contact tows, stirrup rescues/short tows, and tow bags.

These items become important pieces of trip gear and complement the intense training undertaken by the member-volunteers who lead NBBC’s many canoe and kayak paddles during the season. Plus, they just look cool!

Brad will save you!

As serious and important as rescue gear is, of course, the day was also a pretty great excuse to use a heat gun!

Heat gun!

And building paddling gear felt like taking one step closer to spring!

More Member Workshops Coming Up!

On February 11, Monica and Heather will hold the first installment in their suite of classes designed to help NBBC members advance toward Official Paddler status–and hopefully trip leader, too!

This first class, Marine Radio and Weather for Boaters, offers important information for the urban paddler. Next to your life jacket, a marine radio is your most important piece of safety equipment. Become one of the few people in the Five Boroughs to be in the know of how to use a marine radio according to FCC and Coast Guard regulations. This class will also cover the basics of weather for boaters.

This is the first of a series of five classes that provide crucial information for those seeking to to become an NBBC Official Paddler.

  • Marine Radio
  • Everything Local
  • Trip Planning Part 1: Theory
  • Trip Planning Part 2: Practicum
  • Nautical Knots

These classes are for NBBC members–another reason to join the club!

It’s Almost Paddling Season — and It’s a Perfect Time to Join NBBC

All NBBC parties and events; member trips by canoe, kayak, and rowboat; and Environmental Education activities are run by our member-volunteers and funded mainly by membership dues. NBBC members make everything possible. Membership in the North Brooklyn Boat Club is a way to tell the world that you are committed, caring, and adventurous — and the perfect way to find meaning and adventure in the midst of the urban grind.

Coming back from Wallabout Bay, October 14, 2017. The Bone Shore. Photo by Holger Neuhaus

The benefits of becoming a North Brooklyn Boat Club member are many:

  • More chances to paddle with trained NBBC trip leaders! (See our calendar)
  • Learning paddling, navigation, and safety skills to assist trip leaders and help get more people involved and on the water
  • The opportunity to complete our Official Paddler process, which permits use of club vessels and equipment outside of organized paddles
  • Access to our cabin at ACA Camp Lake Sebago on a beautiful lake in Harriman State Park. (NOTE: You must also join the ACA to use Camp Lake Sebago)
  • Attending the annual NBBC meeting
  • Involvement and investment in NBBC’s work to advocate and facilitate water access, human-powered boating, and environmental restoration of the waterways of North Brooklyn, including outreach to other community organizations

The 2018 Membership dues are still just $40! That’s less than two weeks of a Metrocard because we want to include as many people as we can as NBBC members.

But how do you join such a wonderful club?!

A holiday URL

Just use our online membership form. And when you join up or any time afterward, adjust your Member Profile to specify what kinds of club activities you want to hear about via e-mail and what volunteer opportunities most interest you. You can also print out a customized membership card and use it to show people that you are committed to adventure, fun, advocacy, stewardship, and all the good things in life!

A fire lit to guide us home . . . Manhattan Circ, October 7, 2017. Photo by Holger Neuhaus

North Brooklyn Boat Club uses membership dues to fulfill our mission: enabling and advocating for human-powered boating on the waterways bordering North Brooklyn. The organization enables local citizens to be effective stewards of the ecology and so preserve the recreation and freedom that the waterways engender.

Membership puts the power in human-powered boating!

If you don’t like to pay for things online, want to discuss a sliding scale for dues, or have any other questions, check out the options on our membership page or e-mail us at

Renew your membership or join today!