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  • Writer's pictureMobjack Rowing- CP Tomcany

Row the Chesapeake!

On Saturday, July 13, rowers Matt Muffelman of Mathews, and James Dietz of Springfield, Massachusetts, are teaming up for a row across the Chesapeake Bay to highlight public recreational opportunities of the local waterways. “This event is a way to bring attention to the beauty of our local waterways and raise awareness of the efforts being put into the growth and potential of Williams Wharf Landing,” said Muffelman, vice president of the Mobjack Rowing Association. The event centers around a 16-mile journey across the Chesapeake Bay starting from Cape Charles on the Eastern Shore and ending at the historic Williams Wharf Landing on the East River in Mathews.

Williams Wharf Landing is a public access waterfront site owned and operated by Mathews Land Conservancy. MLC was formed in 1994 to protect the site from destructive industrial use and to return this pristine section of the Mobjack Bay back to the community. MLC’s mission is to preserve and protect waterway access for public use, benefit, and education. Joining the event as keynote speakers will be Rep. Rob Wittman (R-Montross) and Joel Dunn, CEO of the Chesapeake Conservancy. Wittman is co-chair of the Chesapeake Bay Caucus, co-chair of the Congressional Chesapeake Bay Watershed Caucus, and author of the 2015 Chesapeake Bay Accountability and Recovery Act. Dunn leads Chesapeake Conservancy’s efforts to increase public access for everyone and strengthen the connection between people and the Chesapeake Bay watershed to promote a greater appreciation for the need to conserve the Chesapeake’s landscapes and special places.

Williams Wharf Landing and Mobjack Rowing are near and dear to Muffelman’s heart—it is where he learned to row in 1995. His rowing career continued at Dartmouth College and then with the U.S. National Team (2005-2010), winning gold at the 2008 World Rowing Championships. Muffelman is now the Business Manager for HUDSON Boat Works, USA. Dietz is a professional rower who works for Hydrow, a Live Outdoor Reality workout company that brings video of outdoor, onwater rowing to members in their home. Dietz has represented the United States in many competitions and has finished top six in the Olympic trials on multiple occasions. Premier rowing manufacturer HUDSON Boat Works will be providing two newly designed one-man open water rowing shells for the event. The HUDSON Coastal SHARK has a dynamic and durable design for the rower who wants to explore bodies of water larger than in the traditional flat-water sport.

Located at Williams Wharf Landing is the Owens Maritime Center which is designed to be the preeminent waterway access, education, and events center in the region, combining its natural ecology with stunning East River views and providing an exceptional venue for rowing. Once completed, the building will house education and research facilities, an elegant indoor/outdoor event space with catering kitchen, and training facilities for local, regional, and national crew and water-based activity teams. Mathews Land Conservancy relies solely on private donations, grants, and use fees for general operations as well as maintenance, improvements, and project construction. The public is invited to celebrate the final leg of the journey up the East River. Williams Wharf Landing will be open at 3:30 p.m. and the rowers are expected to cross the finish line about 4:30. Spectators are invited to come, enjoy food from local food trucks Creekside Catering and Backwoods BBQ, and music from Last Minute Grass. For more information or to donate, go to

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