Learning to row? Training for a race?
Looking for a sculling team?

The San Francisco Bay Blades is a fun, inclusive, and active sculling group where LGBTQ and friendly members get out on the water, meet new people, stay in shape, and compete with like-minded people who love the fun and intense sport of rowing.

Interested? Have questions? Send us a message and we’ll get back to you as quickly as we can. We look forward to hearing from you!

Contact our team captain:

Practice Schedule

Sundays from 9:15 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.
Lake Merritt Rowing Club in Oakland, CA
Practices are usually followed by brunch. Come on by!


Our History

The Blades were formed in 1996 in response to the news that the 1998 Gay Games in Amsterdam would, for the first time ever, include rowing. Al Chase, and about twenty other blades members, competed in Amsterdam. Al started coaching the blades in 1999.


Why Rowing?

Want to have fun while getting into great shape? Rowing is a full-body exercise like nothing else. Whether you're looking to work out your arms, legs, or your core -- rowing has got you covered! Don't worry, though... you'll enjoy being out on the water so much, you'll forget you're even working out!


Where We Row

Located on beautiful Lake Merritt, the Lake Merritt Rowing Club boathouse is the ``nerve center`` of the SF Bay Blades. Whether it's a practice single, a competition quad, or just a training erg, all the equipment you'll need to enjoy rowing can be found here at the Lake Merritt Rowing Club boathouse.



For rowers looking for a more serious rowing experience, we've got you covered! The Bay Blades have competed in not only smaller, regional competitions, but also in international events like the Gay Games in Amsterdam, the Out Games, and the Head of the Charles.

Meet Our Coach


Every good team needs a great leader. Our coach, Al Chase, instructs, teaches, and motivates us to be the best rowing team we can be.

Al Chase started rowing, mostly as a sculler, when he was in high school in 1964, and jumped right back into the sport back in 1992 when he became a member of Lake Merritt Rowing Club.

Get in touch with Al if you have any questions about rowing with the Blades.