It's been more than 30 years since the Oxford Boathouse at Lake Ridge Golf and Marina was originally built. It had seen a lot of wear and tear over the years. Work needed to be done to stabilize the building and bring it up to county code; and that work has now been completed.
Pat Williams, the president of the Prince William Crew Association, said the refurbishment — which included reinforcing the footings, floors, ceilings and walls — will extend the life of the boathouse that is home base to six high school rowing teams. "It's a much stronger boathouse. It means 30 more years of rowing at least," Williams said.
Occoquan District Supervisor Ruth Anderson spoke to parents and students at a recent ribbon cutting ceremony marking the completion of the project. The ceremony coincided with the first day of the rowing season and Anderson told the teams, which were gathered at the boathouse before heading out to compete in their first regatta, that it was clear that the boathouse needed repairs.
She also said she was glad the work was finished in time for the new season. "We're so proud of this new Oxford boathouse," Anderson said. "We are very proud of the rowing clubs that you have and of all of the high schools that participate."
Chairman of the Board of County Supervisors, Corey Stewart, told the crew members who were at the ceremony to keep up the good work. "I just want to wish you all good luck this season."
Prince William County Department of Parks and Recreation Director, Seth Hendler-Voss, said the public-private partnership between the county, Prince William County Public Schools and the crew association made the crew program in Prince William County possible over the years. "If we can replicate partnerships like this into the future, there's nothing that we can't do in terms of providing more recreational opportunities for our community."
Money for the project came from the county's capital maintenance fund, which is in place to maintain county buildings and assets.