For two decades I've been hearing from friends in the
gondola business that we needed to have some sort of "convention",
or better yet, a "regatta".
Then last year a bunch of gondoliers in Rhode Island did it.
They held the first ever gondola rowing competition.
I can not articulate with words - how huge that is.
They made history.
It was the very first event of it's kind in the U.S.,
possibly in all of the Americas.
The bold-thinking gondoliers in Providence will always be credited with this "first". I wished I'd been there to be a part of it.
Yesterday we saw another one:
It seems that our event was appealing enough to the folks at
the Orange County Register (a well-known newspaper in the region).
I woke up to see that our story had made it to the paper.
This isn't the first time I've seen gondolas make it in the papers,
but what caught my eye was where the story ended up:
The Sports Section.
Yes, to those of you who were there, you know we were rowing as athletes,
it's just that most of the press we see in the gondola business ends up in the Lifestyle section or the Entertainment section.
This time it was a sport.
I, for one, felt profoundly validated.
I'm really not sure if this was the first time gondolas ended up in the Sports Section, but the guy who put it all together (Tim Reinard) pointed something out that I believe is true:
"For the first time in the history of the United States, the results of a
gondola race were printed in the sports page of a major newspaper"
The statement caught me off guard.
I'd honestly never thought of it.
But there it was, printed in ink down the right hand side of the page:
And yes, you can click on it to see a much larger version.
Not as big as the one in Providence, but still a milestone we can all look back at for years to come - one I'm thankful to have been a part of.