|Buildup begins at Benderson Park for 2017 World Rowing Championships.|
Are you a rowing aficionado?
Join the club, although its membership will surely dwindle as the 2017 World Rowing Championships draw ever closer at Nathan Benderson Park.
Four years from now, we'll all probably understand the sport more than we do now.
Appreciate it more even.
Osmosis, you know.
We will not become know-it-alls about rowing, thank you
There will be enough of them as it is.
If you encounter one in the meantime, pop this question on them:
What is Vanuatu?
Bet they won't know.
It is not a newly discovered planet in our solar system.
It is not some exotic, wildly overpriced perfume.
It is, in fact, an island nation located in the South Pacific, an archipelago a little more than 1,000 miles east of northern Australia.
It was one of six new countries competing for the first time at the 2013 World Rowing Championships that just concluded in Chungju, South Korea.
The other newbies in the 75-nation field were Ghana, Ivory Coast, Libya, Namibia and Qatar.
Bound to be a bunch more when the main event takes place here.
Which is what has all the folks in our hotel/restaurant/tourist industry salivating.
They've already gotten a taste of what the sport does for business from the college rowing teams that come south in winter to train at Fort Hamer Park.
Ferraro's Italian Grille owner Frank LoGrande, who makes some of the best pizza around here, can vouch for it.
Although you should take the numbers with a grain of salt, the 2017 championships are projected to mean between $25 million and $100 million in business.
No matter how you slice it, that's a lot of pizza.