LANGLEY, SC (WFXG) - Four hundred rowers came out to Langley Pond this weekend for the 29th Annual Southeastern Regional Championship Regatta.
Rowers Marissa bell and bailey wood came from Tennessee for the races, and say they love competing outside of their home state.
"We can be competitive with other crews within our club, but then coming here you get to see crews from all over, and what their ability level is and then competing against them. So it's kind of fun to broaden the field," Bell says.
Athletes from ten states across the southeast came in for this weekend, including Tennessee, Florida and Alabama.
Chief referee Sam Dempsey has officiated rowing races for over 30 years and says the atmosphere is part of the reason people keep coming back.
"This is an area that people are glad to come into and enjoy the weather, the amenities, the conviviality, and basically the open hospitality of the area," he says.
And for the rowers, these people aren't just teammates, they're like family.
"I have seen people here for more than 20 years, the same ones coming back to compete and they really know each other," Dempsey says.
"Rowing is a sport is like a really small world. It's funny how many connections there are in the rowing world, and how many people you know that know other people that you know, just because it's such a small world," says Wood.
"The comradery is the part that makes you want to stay," Bell says.
The race is held the weekend after Father's Day each year, and these rowers already have the date marked on the calendar for the trip next summer.
For information on rowing in the CSRA, click here.