By Ken Martin

WONDERSPOT: Among the many beautiful assets in Castro Valley is Lake Chabot Park. This natural outdoor recreational wonderland gives our area residents a place to picnic, to hike, to fish, to go boating, or just to relax and soak in its natural ambience.

Currently rental and fishing boats are all that are using the lake, but Castro Valley resident Vince Horpel envisions more. A long-time rower and rowing coach, he is trying to establish “Row Chabot”, a non-profit organization that would bring a wide range of aquatic sports programs to Lake Chabot. Vince, who rowed at UC Berkeley and coached the Berkeley High School crew, hopes to create after school recreational and competitive team rowing programs for high school aged youth, an adaptive rowing program for residents with special needs, rowing classes for beginning and intermediate youth and adults, and partnerships with other non-profit groups to facilitate canoeing and kayaking on the lake. All that sounds pretty ambitious but Vince feels that it can be done with a lot of community support.

One present problem is that the poor condition of the docks at Lake Chabot makes it very difficult to get the boats into the water. East Bay Regional Parks District has promised to make some repairs but will not commit to a time frame. What is needed is for anyone that is interested in this type of activity to contact and let them know that support is out there and urge them to fix this facility so these programs can be instituted. The main office number is (510) 632-0135. For Castro Valley administration call (510) 881-1833.

Vince Horpel is very enthusiastic about rowing. He lists some of its virtues as a chance to get out on the water and into nature, and the obvious physical benefits so badly needed by today’s youth.

Hey, kids (and parents)! You are always complaining about having nothing to do here. How about getting behind this dream and making it become a reality? For more complete information contact Vince Horpel at or (510) 427-5062.

WONDERPLACE: Another beautiful Castro Valley asset is our Performing Arts Center. This nice theater, while being on the high school campus, is a truly community center. The month of November promises some very good community-based entertainment for everybody. Here’s what’s coming:

Romeo & Juliet – CVHS Drama  - November 4th, 10th, & 11th at 7:30 PM and November 5th at 2:00 PM. Tickets are now on sale. $5 - $12

CV Adult School Orchestra – November 16th at 7:00 PM. Call 886-1000 for tickets and prices.

Café Buenos Aires – CV Arts Foundation – A Capella Choir, Tango Dancers – November 18th at 8:00 PM - FREE tango lessons at 7:00 PM in the Exhibition Room at the Center. Tickets are on sale now. $25 - $35.

Tickets for all events can be purchased at the Center box office every Thursday & Friday 3:00 – 5:00 PM. Phone: (510) 889-8961 or at the CV Adult School office, 4430 Alma Avenue.