Award made as part of Climate, Access, and Resource (CAR) funding from the state
March 22, 2023
WEST SACRAMENTO — The Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Conservancy Board on Wednesday approved a new multimillion-dollar planning project that aims to bring a world-class water sports facility to the city of Stockton, bolstering recreation and tourism opportunities in the community.
The Board approved $2.5 million in grant funding for the Delta Aquatic Center of Stockton planning project, which was proposed by the San Joaquin Community Foundation and received dozens of letters of support from institutions and community members.
The grant funding from the Delta Conservancy was made possible by the Budget Acts of 2021 and 2022, which provided the Delta Conservancy with one-time general fund allocations of $5,250,000 and $6,125,000 for projects that support climate resilience, community access, and natural resource protection activities that benefit the Delta (collectively known as Climate, Access, and Resource (CAR) funding).
The Americans with Disabilities Act-friendly facility on the Delta will make it possible for all, regardless of ability or means, to access Delta waterways in small, human-powered watercraft. The award of up to $2.5 million will go toward project design, planning, and outreach, which will enable the project to be shovel-ready immediately upon completion of the planning phase.
“We are pleased to sponsor the Delta Aquatic Center of Stockton project, and grateful for the support and partnership of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Conservancy,” said Moses Zapien, CEO of the San Joaquin Community Foundation. “Once completed, this public investment will bring much-needed hands-on education and employment opportunities for our region and dramatically improve access to the Delta waterways for recreation and tourism. Stockton is one of the most diverse cities in the nation, and the Delta Aquatic Center of Stockton will be impactful to the quality of life for residents and visitors alike.”
There are four properties being considered as site locations for the Delta Aquatic Center, which will include a building, docks, and parking lot. Additionally, the project will house the Delta Sculling Center, which will conduct programs for disadvantaged, disabled, and youth populations. The project will also partner with other community-based organizations to promote activities such as urban gardening and provide space for educational programming for youth. The cost of construction to build the facility is estimated at $15 million. During the planning phase, the project will seek community input on programs to be offered onsite, and look to the public, private, and corporate sectors for charitable support to build the aquatic center.
“Stockton is surrounded by 700 miles of interlacing waterways, and if we take care of it, we will all reap the benefits. It has been our dream to find a bigger and safer place to enjoy the Delta and to offer the entire community access to this amazing waterway,” said Dr. Pat Tirone, director of the Delta Sculling Center, and advisory board member for the Delta Aquatic Center of Stockton. “This award from the Delta Conservancy is a major step in moving closer toward making access to the Delta available to everyone, regardless of their ZIP code.”
Hope Miller, Communications Analyst, email@example.com, 916-375-2091
To attend future informational sessions on the project, contact Louis Ponick, director of donor relations at San Joaquin Community Foundation, LPonick@sanjoaquincf.org, 209-943-2375
ABOUT THE SACRAMENTO-SAN JOAQUIN DELTA CONSERVANCY
Working collaboratively with local communities, the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Conservancy leads efforts to protect, enhance and restore the Delta’s economy, agriculture and working landscapes, and environment for the benefit of the Delta region, its local communities, and the citizens of California.
ABOUT THE SAN JOAQUIN COMMUNITY FOUNDATION
The San Joaquin Community Foundation (SJCF) partners with donors to advance the public good through philanthropy. SJCF is committed to building a healthy and prosperous community where all can thrive by promoting equity and supporting community connectivity. For more information about the Community Foundation, visit www.sanjoaquincf.org.
The Virtual Mainline Slide regatta was a great first-time competitive 1 km race for our Middle School scullers. All seven of them set personal records, besting the times they had in practices! All but two logged sub-5-minute times, and those two finished at 5:01 and 5:02!
Adult and youth participants from 7 states competed, but Delta Sculling Center athletes were the only ones represented in the girls and boys middle school 1000-meter events.
Hallie Ragsdale and Dezmond Momon will receive certificates from the regatta organizers for their first-place finishes in the girls and boys Middle School events.
We were very pleased that all our participants’ parents joined us after the event, when we presented their children with Certificates of Accomplishment for their dedicated work during the Winter land rowing program.
Abigail Munoz is a member of the DSC youth program. She has committed to raising funds to support USRowing's STEM to Stern program. You can support Abigail and her team by visiting their fundraising page.
Here's a message from Abigail:
We can't imagine not having the opportunity to row. Rowing has brought us friendship and opportunity and we are excited to work together to ensure more kids can join this great sport!
Together we are raising funds to support USRowing's STEM to Stern program. STEM to Stern helps clubs attract more athletes that might not otherwise row by helping organize things like swim lessons, transportation and other support that gets kids to the boathouse and helps them succeed.
Donation Page: https://give.usrowing.org/team/435242. Ends August 31, 2022.
June 3, 2022 - Arshay Cooper, Founder of A Most Beautiful Thing Inclusion Fund, and his high school teammate Alvin Ross visited Stockton on June 3 & 4, first at Edison H.S., then for DSC’s “Teamwork Makes the Dream Work” fundraiser/acknowledgement of partnerships event, and finally for a rowing experience with 6 Edison youth at the boathouse (with 2-time Olympian David Banks, Arshay, and Alvin plus DSC coaches and youth rowers working with them).
Special thanks to San Joaquin County Office of Education, Dignity Health, and Adventist Health - Lodi Memorial for substantial sponsorship of the June 3rd event—and, to many private donors. We are very grateful to the Stockton Sailing Club for letting DSC use their outdoor venue to host that event. We are so lucky to have such supportive neighbors on the waterway.
I had the JOY of renewing our "Athlete of the Quarter" award - one we hadn't bestowed since prior to Covid - on Sheila Arnold who travels from Volcano to row in our adaptive row every Tuesday.
All of the volunteer coaches picked her unanimously to receive this recognition. Sheila drives the distance whether it's through wildfire smoke and she's without electricity or Covid is raging or whatever else is conspiring to block her! In more than a year she has almost NEVER missed. We could count her absences on one hand!
Sheila inspires us with her progress - remembering and coordinating are challenges but she never gets frustrated and never lets herself feel defeated. She really is an inspiration to us all.
Jeff and Annie are two of the volunteers who have rowed with her as doubles partners. (Missed getting Linn and Marie in the picture.) And we celebrated Jeff's and Sheila's birthdays during that week. Happy Birthday and CONGRATULATIONS Sheila for all you teach us!
- Pat Tirone
Spring Sample Sculling Sessions
Stockton, CA - Six adult newcomers successfully and joyfully learned to scull in a 3-hour Sample Sculling session at DSC on April 30th. DSC’s experienced scullers were thrilled to see how quickly and happily they took to our sport. We look forward to meeting a second group of Sample Scullers on May 21st.
Stockton, CA - Earth Day was a busy day for DSC at Victory Park in downtown Stockton. Education and exercise were paramount as visitors kept our youth scullers/instructors, adult DSC volunteers and coaches, and rowing machines going all day long. And our posters provided detailed environmental facts and visuals about how to be stewards of the Delta waterways.
DSC is grateful to receive the offer of a very generous dollar-for-dollar matching grant from the Brian M. Stocker fund!
This means that all donations made to Delta Sculling Center through 209Gives on April 12th will be fully matched up to a total of $5,000!
We are so grateful to receive the support of this generous legacy gift. Making this match means we could afford to help at least five young people participate in our after-school programming!
About The Brian M. Stocker Fund
The Brian M. Stocker Fund is a fund held at the Community Foundation of San Joaquin that was established through a generous legacy gift from the estate of Brian M. Stocker. The mission of the Fund is to support Brian’s lifelong passion for recreational programs, wellness and healthy living among children and youth in Northern San Joaquin County, with a preference given to Lodi and Stockton.
Delta Sculling Center is privileged and excited to participate in 209Gives - San Joaquin County’s annual fundraiser for community non-profits – sponsored by the Community Foundation of San Joaquin. The event offers donors an opportunity to engage with local causes through an exciting day of participating in locally driven philanthropy. More than $555,000 has been raised since 209Gives launched in 2020!
With the support of DSC participants in all our programs & their families, friends, and the broader community, 209Gives has enabled DSC to welcome new scullers, helped keep our doors open through the pandemic and provided approximately a third of our youth and many of our adult athletes with disabilities with financial assistance so that ALL can participate. We invite you to join our community in support of all area nonprofits on April 12, 2022 and we ask you to remember Delta Sculling Center.
Throughout the spring and as 209Gives approaches, please follow us on Facebook, Instagram, or check out our Donate Page for ways to get involved today!
On Sunday, January 23rd, 2022 members of DSC’s high school team traveled to Marin Rowing to participate in USRowing’s U-19 Identification Camp. The camp was open to all junior rowers in Northern California and was an opportunity to learn from the national team coaches and the top local athletes.
Our rowers learned new drills and got good feedback from some of the top junior coaches in the country. They represented Stockton and DSC well!
- Coach Jane Mcclellan
Visit Record Net for the article.
Check out our recent feature in The Stockton Record! Thank you Clifford Otto for taking the time to cover our work!
Has the Rowing Bug Bit You Yet?
Here is a recent Q&A with novice rower, James, who just joined our Freedom Rows: Delta Heroes team, a program formed by active duty US Military and veterans with disabilities. James rowed with us during the summer for several months but because he works an 8pm to 3am shift in Lathrop and lives in Tracy, he eventually had to interrupt his sculling lessons with us. He later rejoined our team for some fabulous indoor rowing. Please read on . . .
“I'm part of the team now!!! This is going to be super fun!”
Throughout the year, Delta Sculling Center remains active in San Joaquin County. Whether at community fairs or hosting Sample Sculling sessions out on the Delta waterways, our goal is to make the sport of sculling accessible to everyBODY. We are able to adapt our boats and instruction to accommodate any physical or cognitive challenge one may face. Our adaptive rowers find “the run of the boat” with just as much ease and comfort as those that are able-bodied.
Our hearts are filled with joy every time we meet with a novice sculler, one who experiences rowing on the water for the first time. We get the opportunity to CONNECT! And in rowing, “connection” is everywhere. The biggest and best is, of course, connecting with one another. But there are metaphors for connecting throughout the most elemental parts of rowing. All the time we are in our sculls, we are thinking about the connection of our feet with the foot stretchers, our hands with our oar handles, our bottom with the seat, our blades as they drop in the water and the connection that is created as we drive the boat past where our blades lock onto the water. Connection is everywhere in our sport!
That’s why when one of our new athletes decides to take the leap and join our center, we get super excited! James is one of our novice scullers at Delta Sculling Center. Right before spring, James took on the World Erg Challenge, an indoor row competition hosted by Concept2. In just 30 days, James clocked in at 220,069 meters on his erg (indoor row machine) and took the bronze medal on our team! That is nearly 137 miles rowed in one month…not bad for ANY rower let alone a total novice!!
Here’s a few thoughts from James, who just caught the “rowing bug” as we like to call it. We cannot wait to see James and all of our DSC athletes back at our boathouse at RiverPoint Landing Marina soon!
DSC: James, how did you start your indoor row training this year?
James: I had a great experience at The Row House Gym. The instructor told me I had great technique, thanks to the instruction I received from DSC so far. I was so proud to hear that! This was what sparked me to buy an erg. Maybe one day I'll be a Row House franchise owner. I know it'll do well because people are now realizing how good rowing is for the body.
DSC: Concept2 hosts an indoor rowing challenge each year. You’ve been such a huge part of our World Erg Challenge team, Team Delta. Wish we could have ranked a little higher on the team leader board!
James: Winning comes in different forms. Being on Team Delta is a win for me! I was on a soccer team once where most of the team smoked marijuana and drank beer before, during and after the game and didn't care if they won or lost. That's a losing team. This team is doing the best they can. The win for me is that I am learning and getting stronger. I'm sure if we weren't so nice, we would limit the number of spaces and instruct the rowers in how much they need to do to be in the top 5.
Anyway, I'm going to try and do the best I can to get some big numbers for the team for the challenge. I'm having a great time doing this, and I'm really enjoying this new world I am in!
DSC: How do you feel about the 220,000+ meters you accomplished in 30 days?
James: When I finally saw all of the rowers and teams on the Concept2 website, I felt this immense motivation to row my a*# off! So, if my calculations are correct, had I not been so slow to realize what I had to do to set up the challenge on my computer, I could’ve ended up with at least 420,00 meters.
DSC: How has your on-water practice helped with your land rowing?
James: On land, I gave full effort in trying to stick to the technique you taught me. I feel that I was able to row longer on land at higher watts when I incorporated them. In the last week and a half, I have seen improvements in my mental state and fitness.
DSC: What do you think you still need to work on?
James: Currently (and probably forever), I am working on technique and form. I would like to get to a point where it would be hard for me to deviate from good form. I think I am pretty close considering how long it takes me to understand new things. After that, I can concentrate on time, power and stamina. The club’s mission, the vibe, and the people are all great, so I’d like to stay involved.
DSC: Where do you see rowing fitting in to your life from here on out?
James: I honestly think this is the tip of the iceberg. My mind has been going crazy in wanting to go to the next level. I know that I am new, but I do want to compete, I just don’t know how to go about it. Also, I know that I am still dialing in technique and form, but I definitely want more!
All of this is making me feel that saying thank you is not enough to describe my appreciation of what you have done for me. I love rowing. The people, the challenge, the fitness, the beauty, the suffering… everything associated with rowing. I can’t wait to experience the next level. Thank you, Pat. Thank you, DSC!
Thank YOU, James! Rowing is for everyBODY, and we are SO thrilled that you have found a passion in the sport that we all hold so dear to our hearts! Next time, we’ll see you on the water!