Party for Preservation

The Philadelphia Girls’ Rowing club thanks all who contributed to the success of the Party for Preservation — a celebration of the unique history of the PGRC Boathouse and our contribution to rowing. Proceeds from the event will benefit the club's Shore Her Up! campaign to preserve the house's architectural facade and rehabilitate the masonry structure to its original condition.

Saturday, October 15, 2016
4 to 7 p.m.

The Courtyard Studio of Materials Conservation Co.
155 Cecil B. Moore Avenue, Philadelphia

A Place of Firsts

In 1938, four intrepid women sought equal opportunity…to row, alongside men, on the Schuylkill River. Like other efforts of its era, the women could not find support within traditional rowing circles, so they started their own club — the first of its kind —and called it The Philadelphia Girls’ Rowing Club.

In its history, PGRC women have broken barriers: The women’s eight became the first to win the National Women’s Rowing Championships in 1966 and were the first American women’s rowing club to compete in the European Championships. One of our current members brought home Olympic gold in 1984, and another was instrumental in creating the National Women’s Rowing Association.

Our clubhouse at #14 Kelly Drive has an even longer history than our club. Built in 1861, the facility is located on City land, owned by PGRC, and fully maintained by its members. It was the very first structure built on what later became known as Boathouse Row.

The National Historic Landmarks Program has identified the PGRC boathouse as being “most at risk” among historic sites, due to erosion and the rigors of time. Funds raised at the Party for Preservation will help the club pay for extensive masonry work to help restore the club to its original condition. 

PGRC needs your help to help preserve this architectural gem and retain the historic character of a place that all Philadelphians know and love.


Sponsorship Level Amount

Miter $3,000 The Djerassi Family

Anchor $1,000 Wells Fargo Community Connection Grant
Cindy D'Ambrosio & John Ianacone
Dona File & Jeannette Morris
Anne O'Keefe & Ellen Funk
Sophie Socha
2016 PGRC Novice Class


$500 Discover Nature Network (Ginny Ward)
Colonel Charlie Smithers, US Army (ret.) & Dr. Maureen Smithers, MD

Pointing $250 Dilworth Paxson LLP
Glenmede Trust Co.
Solo Real Estate
Joanne Davidow
Harris & Debra Devon
Andrea Duszenczuk



Materials Conservation Co. provides professional services for the conservation of architecture, historic buildings, private and public collections, sculpture, museum objects, mural paintings, and other heritage resources.

The firm owns and operates a studio located at 155 Cecil B. Moore Ave. in Kensington, with an open-air courtyard that highlights the firm's work in bringing old materials -- and buildings -- to life again.



Ready, Willing & Able provides paid transitional work, training, education, and housing for homeless individuals -- helping them become contributing members of the community again. Dressed in their signature uniforms, the "men in blue" provide supplemental maintenance to the City of Philadelphia's parks and public spaces, including Boathouse Row and Kelly Drive. Ready, Willing & Able also operates a culinary arts training program, which provides food handling and preparation skills, and assists participants in securing employment at area restaurants.

The Philadelphia Girls' Rowing Club is proud to partner with the "men in blue" to provide delicious food for the Party for Preservation.

PGRC is also proud to partner with St. Benjamin Brewing, a newly opened craft brewery and taproom operating in Kensington. At the Party for Preservation event, St. Benjamin Brewing will serve its inventive craft beers for guests to enjoy. PGRC and St. Benjamin Brewing both share a commitment to historic preservation, as the brewery is located in the historic carriage house and stables of the former Theo Finkenauer Brewery, just half a mile from our event venue.

Moore Brothers will offer a wine tasting of premier wines during PGRC's Party for Preservation. Guests will be able to sample up to five different varieties from Moore Brothers' extensive collection.