Polar Bear Regatta
- Hosted By: Virginia Scholastic Rowing Association
- 2020 Registered Regatta
SANDY RUN REGIONAL PARK
10450 Van Thompson Road, Fairfax Station, VA 22039
The park is open to the public for the purpose of education, training, practice, and racing for competitive and recreational sculling and rowing. Only shells and other boats authorized by the Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority (NVRPA) may be launched from the docks or shoreline of Sandy Run. The park manager can be contacted at 703-690-4392.
REGATTA DAY FAQ's AT SANDY RUN REGIONAL PARK
1. Is there a fee to come to the regattas?
There is a fee required to park at Sandy Run on a Regatta day; this charge will vary depending on the event sponsor. For High School Scholastic regattas this fee will be $20. Please car pool and save money.
2. Can I park anywhere when I come to a regatta?
Please follow the parking crew directions. There is no parking along the road in the neighborhood. Parking in a manner that blocks the safe movement of vehicles or shuttles could get your vehicle towed. Police are on site for the regatta.
PLEASE RESPECT THE NEIGHBOR ALONG VAN THOMPSON ROAD!
3. How much time should I allow to get to the grandstands?
You should give yourself an hour before your rowers race to be safe. You will have to wait for the money collectors and wait to be parked. After you park you will have to find you way to C lot to walk the trail or take the shuttle to the grandstands. Later in the day it may even take longer if you are parked in the outer lots that require you to take a shuttle or walk to the main park.
4. How is the parking money used?
Half of the money goes to the Park Authority that helps cover services and staff throughout the year. The other half goes to the regatta sponsor to cover their expenses.
5. Why should I have to pay if my tax dollars pay for the park?
The Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority owns and operates Sandy Run. The Park Authority is made up of six jurisdictions that contribute 18% of tax dollars to ouroperating cost. The other 82% is generated through user fees throughout our whole system.
6. Do rowers have to pay to park?
Everyone has to pay, unless you are Sandy Run staff, regatta staff, officials or coaches. We encourage car-pooling as much as possible. For High School Scholastic regattas there is free shuttle service from the drop of point in the Van Thompson Lot.
7. Do I have to pay the fee to drop a rower off?
For High School Scholastic regattas you may drop you rower at the Van Thompson shuttle location without paying for parking. It you plan to proced beyond the Van Thompson lot, even to just drop off your rower, you will pay as if you are parking.
8. Where do I drop my rower off if I'm not staying?
For High School Scholastic regattas you may drop you rower at the Van Thompson shuttle location without paying for parking. It you plan to proceed beyond the Van Thompson lot, even to just drop off your rower, you will pay as if you are parking. After the money collectors, you will follow Van Thompson Road into the park. Inform the parking crew that you are dropping off a rower and they will direct you into C-Lot where you will drop off your rower and then exit the lot. It is too busy below that point with pedestrians, rowers and boats for you to go any further.
9. If I need to leave the regatta and come back, do I have to pay again?
Please let the money collectors know that you are leaving and coming back. They will issue you a ticket to re-enter. For High School Scholastic regattas the driver may request a hand stamp designated for that day and may re-enter without paying an additional fee.
10. Can I get my same parking space if I leave then return?
Once a vehicle leaves a parking space we fill it with another one. You will have to park in another location as directed by the parking crew. For High School Scholastic regattas – later in the season (specifically State Championships) the entire parking capacity gets filled early. You may get turned away if the on-site parking is full. It is best to plan on using off-site parking if you plan to return.
11. Is there a discount for car-pooling?
Team buses and team vans with seating for 12 or more do not have to pay the parking fee.
12. Can we bring an RV to the regatta?
There are limited parking spaces at the park and there is no room for RV's.
13. Are there shuttles from the parking lots?
A shuttle is provided by the regatta sponsor. If the regatta is large, we will be parking cars at the Van Thompson lot just past the money collectors. Shuttles are provided from that lot at no cost. For High School Championship regattas, vehicles will be parked at the satellite parking lot and bused in for $5 per person, but will not have to pay the $20 parking fee.
14. Is there a shuttle from the Loisvale lot?
For High School Scholastic regattas – the shuttles do include the Loisvale lot in their route, however, individuals that park in such a manner as to prevent the shuttles form being able to get through are subject to being ticketed and towed.
15. How do I get to the grandstands?
There is a trail that can be walked from the C lot. The trail follows the contour of the land and has hills. When you come to a "T" in the path you will go left to the grandstands (about .6 miles) and if you go right that will take you to the lower boathouses (about .4 miles). DO NOT WALK ON THE ROAD TO THE GRANDSTANDS!
There is also a shuttle van that runs to the grandstand from C lot, provided by the regatta sponsor. There is a fee each way (usually $3). The money collected helps off set the rental and gas of the vans.
16. What time will the shuttle to the grandstands start?
The grandstand (C-lot to Finish line) shuttles start running approximately 45 minutes before the start of the first race. The shuttle continues to run until the grandstand area is cleared.
17. Is there a fee for the grandstand shuttle?
There is a fee each way (usually $3). The money collected helps off set the rental and associated cost of the vans.
18. How far of a walk is it to the grandstands if I don’t take the shuttle?
When you come to a “T” in the path you will go left to the grandstands (about 0.6 miles) and if you go right that will take you to the lower boathouses (about 0.4 miles). DO NOT WALK ON THE ROAD TO THE GRANDSTANDS! THE ROAD IS SOLELY FOR THE SHUTTLE VANS AND IS UNSAFE TO HAVE PEDESTRIANS ON IT AS WELL!
19. Why can't we drive to the grandstands?
There is no parking there. The one lane road to the grandstands is just for the two vans that go back and forth and is unsafe for any other vehicles to be on. DO NOT WALK ON THE ROAD TO THE GRANDSTANDS! THE ROAD IS SOLELY FOR THE SHUTTLE VANS AND IS UNSAFE TO HAVE PEDESTRIANS ON IT AS WELL!
20. Do you have handicap parking accommodations?
We have handicap parking spaces in C lot (closes to the trail and shuttle) and in D lot (across from trailer parking).
21. I'm in a wheelchair, how do I get to the grandstands?
A regatta staff member can drive you over to the grandstands. If you have a special wheelchair vehicle, you will need a "special permit". To get a "special permit", PLEASE CONTACT THE REGATTA SPONSOR TO OBTAIN A "SPECIAL ACCOMODATION FORM" PRIOR TO EACH REGATTA. Follow the instructions of the parking staff to follow the shuttle van over to the grandstands.
22. How do I get my elderly parent, who can't walk well, to the grandstand?
A regatta staff member can drive your elderly parent over to the grandstands if they can't walk from the drop-off point to the grandstands. For planning purposes, PLEASE CONTACT THE REGATTA SPONSOR TO OBTAIN A "SPECIAL ACCOMODATION FORM" PRIOR TO EACH REGATTA.
23. Why are pets banned from the park on regatta days?
Pets have been banned because of dog fights, bites, dog defecation and tripping rowers as they carry shells.
24. Can I bring a bicycle?
Bicycles are permitted only on the road. BIKES ARE NOT PERMITTED ON TRAILS OR THE ROAD TO THE GRANDSTAND THAT THE SHUTTLE VANS USE.
25. Are there assigned tent spaces?
No. Tent space is on a first come first served basis. Be considerate of other teams and position your tents to most economically use the space.
26. Where can we set-up team tents?
Team tents can be set-up in the wooded area behind trailer parking. Tents can also be placed on the two outside grass edges on the hill where teams rig boats. Please ask park staff to direct you if you need help.
27. Can we set up our tents on Friday evening?
No. Tents can only erected on Saturday morning. You cannot stake out an area on Friday afternoon.
28. Can we drive our food supplies to the team tents?
In most cases you will have to carry the items from your vehicle to you team tent. If you have a car load of items (several coolers, cases drinks and supplies) for your team tent, please show the parking director at C & D lot and they will direct you. It helps if you arrive very early when there is little rower and car traffic (before the coaches meeting).
29. Can we cook food at the regatta?
Any types of open flame (grill, sterno, charcoal. ... etc.) are not permitted at Sandy Run. Generators are not permitted.
30. Is food sold at regattas?
The regatta sponsors typically provide grilled foods, snacks and drinks as a fundraiser.
31. Are regatta boat trailers allowed to enter the park on Friday afternoon?
Yes. Boat trailers may enter the park at the conclusion of the Friday practice period, 7:00 till sunset for arriving trailers.
32. What time is the park open on Saturday mornings before a regatta?
The park manager typically arrives between 5:00 and 5:30am.