University Barge Club, the second oldest rowing club on Philadelphia’s historic Boathouse Row, was organized “for the purpose of instruction and improvement in, and enjoyment of, the art of rowing, and the cultivation of a friendly feeling in all of those who participate in this amusement and exercise.”
We have done that for more than 150 years.
Today’s active male and female masters rowers range in age from the late 20s to the mid 80s. Roughly half of the approximately 150 regular rowers do so competitively, some training for Henley, the San Diego Crew Classic, the Head of the Charles. the World Rowing Masters and many regattas on the Schuylkill River. The balance are dedicated recreational rowers, for whom neither rain, nor snow nor the dark of an early winter morning is a reason to sleep in.
We take great pride in our fleet of top quality high performance boats, professionally maintained and repaired in-house to a standard of excellence, and renewed on a regular basis.
There are regular formal and informal (row and breakfast, row and dine) social events and gatherings, as well as member opportunities for volunteerism and stewardship to fulfill our responsibilities to the Club and the larger rowing community.
The boathouse is one of the original occupants of Boathouse Row, which was designated in 1987 as a National Historic Landmark. Built in 1871, it was substantially expanded in 1893 to accommodate eight-oared shells. Maintenance of the historic structure is entrusted to the UBC 1871 Foundation, a 501(c)(3) public charity.
From 1971 through 2008, UBC hosted the Thomas Eakins Head of the Schuylkill Regatta. The Regatta became an independent 501(c)(3) public charity in 2009, with Club members continuing to play a major role in its financial and on-water operations.
The Club is home to the Springside/Chestnut Hill Academy crew.