Caroline Lind displays her two Olympic gold medals with Mary and Jim Hollingsworth.
GREENSBORO, NC – Over one hundred rowers and their friends and families from across the Triad, including members of the High Point University rowing team, joined two time Olympic gold medalist Caroline Lind for a ‘Celebration of Rowing’ at the Starmount Country Club on Monday evening.
The banquet, hosted by High Point Rowing Club, was a homecoming for Lind, who is a Greensboro native. Lind won gold on board the United States women’s eight crew at both the Beijing and London Olympics.
Serving as master of ceremonies, High Point rowing coach Allie Davis, introduced varsity rowers Kiana Davis, Aliute Udoka, and Quinn Eury, who sang a moving rendition of the National Anthem to open the evening.
Master of Ceremonies: Allie Davis
Westchester Country Day School sophomore Charles York then gave the invocation, after which guests dined on a sumptuous feast while listening to the talented Rich Richards, also a rower and coach, play on the club’s grand piano.
Coach Davis then returned to the podium to begin the formal ceremonies, which included recognizing several of High Point Rowing Club’s new ‘Masters’ with awards, including Erin Sanders who won ‘Rower of the Year.’
‘Masters Rower of the Year’: Erin Sanders.
Mary Hollingsworth then thanked and recognized former volunteer coach Caroline Howard, former HPRC rower Sarah Catto, and current HPRC rower Margaux Blanchard for their service ‘above and beyond the call of duty’ to High Point Rowing Club. Mrs Hollingsworth is herself a Director of HPRC, a volunteer coach, parent of two rowers (Katie and Jackie) and the parent liaison for the team. To recognize her generous contributions to the club, Coach Gene Kininmonth commissioned an award in her name “The Mary Hollingsworth Cup” to be presented to a parent each year for outstanding contribution to the Club.
This year, the Mary Hollingsworth Cup was awarded to Kathy Howard, mother of High Point youth rowers Colin and Drew.
The evening then took a twist with the arrival to the podium of club founder and coach Gene Kininmonth to introduce Olympic great Caroline Lind. Kininmonth, an Australian native, said the theme of his introduction would be ‘Play, Listen, and Watch.’
High Point Rowing Club founder Gene Kininmonth introduces double Olympic gold medalist Caroline Lind at the Celebration of Rowing banquet.
“Let’s play!” said Kininmonth. “The name of the game is Two-Up, an Aussie game that began in the days of Australia’s Gold Rush and a fitting one to play in the presence of our double Olympic gold medalist, Caroline Lind.”
Kininmonth then explained the game involved tossing two coins in the air with everyone choosing whether they would fall ‘heads’ or tails’ or one of each. Allie Davis returned to the stage to illustrate how folks would indicate their choice by placing a hand on either their head or the ‘tail.’ Those choosing correctly remained standing and the coins would continue to be tossed until only one remained standing – and the winner was Caroline Lind!
After thanking Mary Hollingsworth and Allie Davis for their service and recognizing the club’s youth captains Adam Alt, Colin Howard, Addy Millsap, and Kim Pollard for their team leadership, Kininmonth then invited guests to ‘Listen’ to Victoria Goldin recite “Time: a Rowing Poem” by Celeste Dulillo.
Then it was time to ‘Watch’ as the lights were dimmed and the projector screened Caroline Lind’s USA women’s eight at the World Cup in France this past summer. With Canada out in front by a boat length half way through the race, a technical glitch halted the video at which point Kininmonth exclaimed “Those Canadians!”
But the United States prevailed (click here to watch the race) and Caroline Lind took center stage to great applause. A poignant speaker, Lind held the audience captive as she shared the experience of her rowing journey, with a message emphasizing the importance of living a life of character and integrity.
It was an amazing night for rowing in the Triad and High Point Rowing Club would especially like to thank Caroline Lind, her parents Fred and Mary Lind, and High Point University rowers Zach Astran, Kylie Flynn, Angelica Bryan, and their coach Jessica Mahon for their presence on this occasion.
Starmount Country Club in Greensboro was the venue for the Celebration of Rowing with Caroline Lind.
With Olympic gold in hand, Caroline Lind with High Point rowers (from left) Bethany Brake, Kim Pollard, Sarah Catto, and Emma Lloyd.
Double Olympic gold medal rower Caroline Lind with the High Point Masters and their coaches Gene Kininmonth and Allie Davis.
From left, rowers Adam Alt, Andrew Wright and Charles York pose with two time Olympic gold medal winner Caroline Lind.