Early drizzle doesn’t dampen Dyes Dash

Team Spiro’s 1, won the Men’s Division race at the Dyes Inlet Dash again this year, taking this third heat Sunday by more than half a boat length. - Photo by Jesse Beals
Team Spiro’s 1, won the Men’s Division race at the Dyes Inlet Dash again this year, taking this third heat Sunday by more than half a boat length.
— image credit: Photo by Jesse Beals

Each year, the rhythmic chanting echoes off the water, broken only by the splash of oars slicing through the water’s surface.

And even with the drizzle that fell early Sunday, this year was no exception as the turnout was strong again for the 2007 Dyes Inlet Dash.

A Whaling Days event hosted by Hui Heihei Wa’a, Silverdale’s own outrigger canoe club, the Dyes Inlet Dash wasn’t deterred by the weather that’s dogged the area recently. Instead, turnout was high, and smiles were abound.

“It was really fun,” said Rob Shauger, a first-time racer from Harrison Medical Center. “We had a good time. They’ve got great people out there helping out.”

Shauger, who raced for West Wing Harrison in the Ohana (family) division, helped the team of first-timers to a win, edging Wild Trout in the final.

At first, Shauger said, it was easy to get intimidated by the veterans.

“It feels great to win,” Shauger said. “Everybody that rowed for us, it was our first time together. And we’re like, ‘Wow, this is different.’ There’s some competitive people down here.”

Vicky Webb, filling in for Carla Larson on the Whaling Days Executives team, also got to experience racing for the first time, but on a team of veterans. That didn’t calm her nerves too much at first, however.

“Actually, I was afraid to do it,” she said. “But I had a great time.”

Webb, who also organizes the 21+ Club at Whaling Days, also is the girls soccer coach at Central Kitsap High School. She said while both are team sports, both are unique.

“It’s a team sport, but not like you pass to me and I’ll score,” Webb said.

She added that working so closely with her teammates in day-to-day life also helped out.

“We’re a team on the land because we all work together,” Webb said.

In the Co-ed division, Navy ER topped the Nisfits with the Whaling Days Execs coming in third. Webb said following Whaling Days President Barry Iles wasn’t easy.

“I was behind Barry,” she said. “Trying to follow Barry with his big ol’ muscles. I’m supposed to keep it going on the other side?”

But learning on the fly was part of what made the event fun, she said.

“It was fun,” Webb said. “I don’t think I’ve had that much fun doing anything as a team, honestly. You have to work together as a team. There’s a lot of directions to follow.”

Shauger added another nice aspect was that people of any age and ability could compete.

“You don’t have to be very athletic,” he said. “It was all just keeping in stroke and in time as a team.”

In the Women’s competition, the YMCA Fitness Warriors topped Kitsap Physical Therapy with the Birds of Paradise finishing third.

Spiro’s 1 won the Men’s division over Marine View Beverage and Sterling Homes.

Hui Heihei Wa’a also uses the event to promote new memberships. More information about the club and the Dash is available online at

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