Special President’s Newsletter McLean Crew Club What You Need to Know

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Special President’s Newsletter

McLean Crew Club - What You Need to Know

Spring Training at Camp Cooper

McLean High School Crew Club


R M Cooper 4-H Leadership Center

8001 M W Rickenbaker Rd, Summerton SC 29148 

803-478-2105; 803-460-3233 and 803-460-6001



March 15 – March 22, 2008

Fairfax County Public Schools has approved our trip to spring training trip to Camp Cooper, thus our preparations are complete. Now it’s your turn. Rowers and parents should have completed & signed all FCPS forms and returned them by March 5th in order to participate.

Itineraries – Day of Departure – Day of Return – Daily Schedule
Saturday, March 15

6:30 am – Bus Arrives at McLean High School (FRONT entrance)

7:00 am – Bus Departs McLean High School (FRONT entrance) (~7 hour trip)

12:30 pm – Stop for lunch *PRE-ARRANGE STOP IN ADVANCE – included in cost of trip

1:00 pm – Resume trip to Summerton,SC

3:00 pm – Arrive Summerton, SC


Saturday, March 22

11:00 am – Depart Summerton, SC

4:00 pm – Stop for early dinner *PRE-ARRANGE STOP IN ADVANCE – included in cost of trip

5:00 pm – Resume trip to McLean, VA

7:00 pm – Arrive McLean High School (Front entrance)

All rowers must travel either on the bus or with one of the designated chaperone drivers No exceptions. Per FCPS regulations, no rowers will be allowed to drive to or from in a car driven by anyone other than their own parents, by another rower's parents (with written permission from their own parents) or by a vehicle driven by a designated chaperone .Anyone wishing to leave with their own parents, or with another rower's parents, must first speak with chaperones Karen Bush or Marilyn Stewart.  Parents must sign-out the rower with Karen or Marilyn before departing.
DAY OF DEPARTURE - The two charter buses will arrive at McLean High School front entrance promptly at 6:30 am to begin loading rowers and their gear. Students are expected to arrive at 6:30 am, load their own gear into the lower luggage bins and board the bus. Each bus will have 2 or more chaperones on the bus at all times. The scheduled time of departure is exactly at 7:00 am. The chaperones will take roll call before departure. The 7:00 am departure time must be adhered to by all participants, rowers and chaperones, the goal is to arrive at camp in order for the rowers to rig their boats and get on the water before dinner is served in the chow hall. Phone calls will be placed to tardy rowers, with the understanding that it is unfair to hold up the entire team and each rower hold the same responsibility for being on time. The buses will travel together the duration of the trip and the chaperones will have each others’ cell phone numbers to communicate between buses as needed. After approximately 6 hours on the road, we will stop at Fuller’s Old Fashioned BBQ is Lumberton, NC for lunch. If you believe your child will get hungry before the scheduled 12:30 – 1:00 lunch stop please pack some snacks to carry him/her over. Hunger and whining are contagious. Fuller’s will prepare the individual meals (BBQ, White or Dark baked Chicken or salad), have them ready for take out and we will distribute them to the rowers based on their selection. The rowers will eat lunch on the bus to keep the schedule for an afternoon row upon our arrival.
DAY OF RETURN – The rowers will be expected to clean their dorm rooms as a team, with a scheduled inspection by the Camp staff at 9:00 am, as is the facility procedure. We are required to vacate the dorms no later than 9:30 am. The buses will arrive at 10:00 am for the rowers to load their gear. We will eat breakfast at the Camp chow hall, then board the bus, take roll call and depart at 11:00 am. We plan to stop at Subway around 4:00 pm for an early dinner, again ordering prearranged take out and eating on the bus. The chaperones will have the rowers select their preferred sandwich choices on the way to Cooper. When we arrive in the Richmond area the chaperones will call the home contact for a blast email to be sent out to all parents announcing our estimated time of arrival. We expect to return around 7:00 pm assuming cooperative traffic patterns on I-95. The best way to determine our actual arrival will be email and of course your, tired and anxious to get a real shower, children will start calling you as we get closer.



6:00-930 am ROW (Lake Marion)

10:00 am BRUNCH

12:00- 2:00 pm ROW (Lake Marion)

2:00-3:00 pm AFTERNOON SNACK

3:00-5:00 pm ROW (Lake Marion) *study time – on site computer study hall

6:00pm DINNER

7:00-930 pm Evening activities *boat meetings, volleyball, tournament,   basketball,

softball, movie night, dance 8pm, campfire 9pm, BBQ with other schools. 
*One evening activity is pre-scheduled by the camp for each evening.

10:00 pm CURFEW

Most mornings rowers will be up by 6 am, and, following a light breakfast, will be on the water rowing. Schedules will vary by boat, but everyone will have at least two extensive daily sessions on the water, interspersed by lunch, video review, down time and study time. The coaching staff will be in full force, Chris, Bobby, Morgan, Leah, Austin, Michelle and Zach will be on-site for specialized training and instruction. Although Michelle and Zach have to depart early, the 18th and 20th respectively, the rowing opportunities will be immeasurable. Rowers will receive unique training opportunities, first and foremost being able to get on the water three times a day, as well as one-on-one critique, video review, slide shows, boat bonding, and other opportunities they might not ordinarily try, sweep versus scull, single and double rowing and much more. As with most summer camps, the rowers will be required to bus their dining-hall tables, keep their rooms cleaned and share in additional cleaning duties.
McLean has a dedicated meeting room with TV, VCR and wireless Internet access that will be used for video review, team meetings and homework. Parent chaperones will proctor the homework sessions. If you know that your child has a school project due after Spring Break and feel that informing a chaperone would present a stronger case for student time management please contact one of the chaperones with information on the school assignment. Inevitably when the rowers are asked about academics they stare blankly as if the question was never posed to them before. In the evenings, in addition to boat meetings, the rowers can take advantage of camp activities such as beach volleyball, basketball, softball, ultimate Frisbee, dodge ball, movie night, a dance, and a bonfire. There are hiking trails and opportunities for swimming. Rowers will be instructed to follow the buddy system as well as inform his/her designated chaperone in advance of hiking, swimming, etc.
While at the camp, all meals will be at the camp. If we are plagued with extensive weather that precludes training safely, coaches and chaperones may try to take the rowers off-site for bowling or movies.





Eight parents – 6 women and 2 men – are chaperoning this trip and stay on-site with the kids for the duration. The chaperones divide into teams once we arrive at Camp Cooper – Girls and Boys. Each Team has a designated captain who will coordinate with the coaches and meet their daily requirements, make Walmart shopping runs for gas, water, ice and the very competitive intermittent shopping adventure for the rowers. The chaperones’ rooms adjoin the girl’s and boy’s dorms; chaperones will eat with the kids, and will supervise the evening activities from movie night, volleyball tournament, bonfire, and dance. They will conduct a midweek room clean up check to avoid a 4 hour clean up on the last day of camp last year. (By the way the boys rooms were cleaned up much faster and cleaner than the girls.) The chaperones will have their cell phones with them at the Camp, although coverage depended on the provider last year, with only AT&T (formerly Cingular) getting reception. Chaperones will be able to check their emails at the camp in the Computer Lab/Study Hall. Please keep the contact info below in case you need to reach your chaperone during the week. You know your child the best, if you feel that a discreet communication with one of the chaperones is warranted concerning school work, medications, allergies, dating, or any other concern - please contact any one of the chaperones you feel comfortable talking to or if your child has input on who (s)he may feel more at ease with please reach out to one of the adults caring for your child for 7 days. Each chaperone will be assigned around 10 rowers. On the girls team Karen Bush and Lisa Russell are teamed together to keep watch over the Girls Seniors and Juniors Dorm. Teri Harper and Karen Vamberi are teamed up with the Sophomores and Freshmen Girls Dorm. On the boys team we have Marilyn Stewart backed up by Robin Russell assigned to the 1st8, Robin Russell guiding the Light8, Linda Peterson doting on the 2nd8 and John DaCrema working the Freshmen8.


Girls Chaperone Team                               Boys Chaperone Team

            Karen Bush – Captain                                  Marilyn Stewart - Captain

             Lisa Russell                                                   Robin Russell

             Teri Harper                                                   Linda Peterson

            Karen Vamberi                                              John DaCrema


            Coaches                                                        Coaches

            Chris Gordon                                                  Bobby Meeks

            Morgan Ferguson                                           Austin Middleton

            Leah Silverstein                                              Michelle St. George

                                                                                    Zach Steinmart


Girls Chaperone



Karen Bush



Teri Harper



Lisa Russell



Karen Vamberi



Boys Chaperone



John DaCrema



Linda Peterson



Robin Russell



Marilyn Stewart




The R.M. Cooper 4-H Leadership Center is part of Clemson University’s Youth Learning Institute, but please note that the facility is essentially a summer camp that is set-up to host high school and collegiate rowing teams. Please refer to the attached “what to bring list” to organize your packing. Our team will be there at the same time as Yorktown High crew and other teams, including several colleges.

Our boys will be housed in their own dorm with 3 rooms that house up to 14 persons per room in twin bunk beds with mattresses. They will share a common bathroom located in their dorm. One male parent chaperone and two male coaches will be staying in an adjoining unit in this dorm. The girls will be in a separate all-girls dorm, divided into two rooms with similar bed and bathroom set-ups. The girls will have two rooms that sleep 28 each in each room. Four female parent chaperones will be staying in the adjoining unit on this dorm.
ROWERS NOTE: Curfew each night will be at 10 p.m. Chaperones will conduct bed checks. Your coaches, your parents and the McLean High administration expect you to respect your teammates, abide the curfew and be where you are supposed to be at all times.
PARENTS NOTE: McLean Crew is and has been blessed with student/athletes who have demonstrated maturity, responsibility and accountability. Our expectation of this year’s team makes us confident that this tradition will continue. However, should a rower violate curfew, be caught with alcohol or drugs, or violate any camp, club or school rules that call for immediate expulsion, we are prepared to follow McLean High School policy up to and including driving that rower to Charleston, putting him/her on a plane, calling his/her parents with the flight information and billing the parents for that ticket.
Camp rules include expulsion for being in unauthorized areas and reimbursement for damage ($250 for a TV, $45 for a mirror, $115 to replace a door, etc.)


We urge rowers to minimize the amount of valuables taken on this trip. The only spending money needed will be for souvenirs, and there will be minimal opportunity and selection. During dinner time the camp sells Eat.Sleep.Row t-shirts for around $10 and water bottles for about $8. The tees were very popular last year. We make every effort to secure your child’s valuables but ultimately the primary responsibility lies with your child. The McLean Crew Club and the R.M. Cooper will not be financially or otherwise responsible for a rower’s personal belongings.
Only bring a laptop if it is necessary for homework. The coaches have told the rowers not to bring video games. iPods are fine. All laptops, iPods, etc. will be stored in the locked chaperone vehicles we’ll have with us. Note in the packing list that we ask each rower to have a small backpack for his/her valuables that can be locked in one of the cars and easily accessed when needed.

Prescription Medication

If your son or daughter must take prescription medication while at Camp Cooper, it would be wise to provide a written prescription that we can refill if necessary. If you believe your child might benefit from some discreet monitoring regarding his/her meds please feel free to contact a chaperone for assistance. Camp is exciting, independent and a different rowing experience. The daily schedule can make even a very responsible adolescent forgetful. The chaperones can monitor discreetly and respectfully with your child’s best interests in mind.

The camp has very basic first-aid facilities. Coach Meeks is certified in CPR & First Aid, and we will have our Club first aid gear with us. A hospital is 15 minutes from the camp.
PARENTS NOTE: We must have a copy of your family insurance card with us to ensure your rower will receive prompt medical treatment should it be necessary.

ROWERS NOTE: Be sure to bring a photo ID (drivers license, learner’s permit, school ID) and store it in your valuables bag to ensure you receive prompt medical treatment should it be necessary.

Weather Forecast

Mar 15  Saturday Hi 78 - Low 47 - 30% chance of precip

Partly cloudy, chance of a thunderstorm. Highs in the upper 70s and lows in the upper 40s.

Mar 16  Sunday Hi 70 – Low 43 - 10% chance of precip

Sunny. Highs in the low 70s and lows in the low 40s.

Mar 17  Monday Hi 72 – Low 51 - 20% chance of precip

Considerable cloudiness. Highs in the low 70s and lows in the low 50s.

Mar 18  Tuesday Hi 76 – Low 53 - 20% chance of precip

Mix of sun and clouds. Highs in the mid 70s and lows in the low 50s.

Mar 19  Wednesday Hi 75 – Low 40 - 60% chance of precip

Showers. Highs in the mid 70s and lows in the low 40s.

Mar 20 Thursday

Averages Hi 69 Low 44 Records Hi 84 Low 21

Mar 21 Friday

Averages Hi 69 Low 44 Records Hi 85 Low 23

Mar 22 Satuday

Averages Hi 70 Low 45 Records Hi 90 Low 23

What to bring:

√ Sleeping Bag/bed linens

√ Pillow

√ Bath Towel

√ Toiletries

√ Down time activities/hobby

√ Homework that is due right after spring break

√ Clothes – very casual low 40, high 70

√ Flashlight

√ Bug Spray & Sunscreen

√ Electronics – ipods, dvd players, games, laptops welcome

√ Beach Towels

√ Socks and more socks

√ Money for Cooper Tee Shirts – $10 (optional)



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