Sunday, April 6, 2014

Donate Your 2013 Refund to Racer Rowing

This year, the IRS is expected to refund an average of $3,000 to tax-paying Americans. With e-filing options and money direct deposited into taxpayers’ personal accounts, 9-out-of-10 refunds are expected to be completed within about 21 days from the time tax returns are processed. With all the money you have coming back to you from 2013, what are you planning to do with it?

Please consider donating a portion of your tax refund to Racer Rowing. With the team’s sprint season kicking into high gear in less than two weeks, your generous donation can go a long way in terms of helping the teamnot only manage its expenses for this seasonbut make long term investments that are badly needed to help Racer Rowing move forward as a competitive club. 

The team needs approximately $5,000 to cover parts and labor to install a new gangway and dock,  $5,000 for replacement parts (e.g., foot stretchers, shoe plates, seats, ergometer monitors etc.) and $1,600 for new sculling blades.

Athlete’s dues and the generous contributions from their families and a few select alumni have covered the lion’s share of the team’s expenses for the 2013-2014 season. But the team’s problem isn’t solvency…it’s liquidity. As coach Weaver observed, too frequently the club has “been robbing Peter to pay Paul”; cannibalizing parts from older boats and equipment to keep newer boats moving. But all of Racer Rowing's equipment is fast approaching the end of its useable life. The time is fast approaching when our boats will not be capable of going fast. Scrounging for serviceable parts to keep aging equipment afloat is not a sustainable practice—especially if Racer Rowing hopes to compete at the high level of competitiveness we all know it is capable of.

Keep in mind also, the stipend that Matt Weaver and Sarah Marshall take for their long-term commitment to coach an intercollegiate rowing club is a pittance compared to what they deserve. With their combined knowledge and experience, we’re damn fortunate to have them! 

Wouldn't it be great if the Racer Rowing Society could raise enough money to cover the costs of new facilities and equipment? Wouldn’t it be great if The Racer Rowing Society could raise enough money to establish a trust through which the club’s coaches are awarded compensation that is more fitting for all that they do? Wouldn't it be great if Racer Rowing could reward its top student athletes with scholarships that are at least comparable to what was offered when rowing was part of the MSU athletic department?

In making a decision to contribute to Racer Rowing, don’t forget: giving at the Bronze ($250-499), Silver ($500-$999), and Gold ($1,000+) levels entitles you respectively to the  naming rights to an oar, seat, or a boat. Each homecoming, we are reminded of our Alumni friends by the sight of their names on these pieces of equipment. But as the team enters the spring of its 18th year, remember that there are far more alumni out there than there are people currently rowing; subsequently, there is a lot of equipment in the boathouse that has not yet been named by the many who once rowed for Murray State. Don’t let the rest of us forget you!

So, when that extra $250 or more shows up in your bank account after April 15th, please consider making a generous donation to Racer Rowing! For details on how you can support the crew, click here.

Help us Hunt a Whale!

We’re seeking leads and/or advice for identifying and contacting a significant benefactor; a person, company, or institution that might be willing to make an extraordinary donation to Racer Rowing. Wouldn't it be great if we could find someone who might write us a check for at least $1,000,000 to (1) cover the costs of new equipment, (1) provide  competitive compensation for the coaching staff, and (3) offer scholarships for student athletes that are comparable to what we lost when Rowing was cut from the MSU Athletics Department in 2008? If you've got any tips, please send an e-mail to this site’s moderators.

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