National Park Service: Save Jack's Boathouse from Closure!
  • Petitioned Steve Whitesell, Regional Director
  • Responded

This petition was delivered to:

National Park Service
Steve Whitesell, Regional Director
Public Affairs Specialist
Toni Braxton
Associate Regional Director
Peter May
See response
Associate Regional Director
Einar Olsen
Public Affairs Specialist
Margie Ortiz
Regional Chief Ranger
Will Reynolds
Department of the Interior
National Park Service Director
Jon Jarvis
Deputy Associate Regional Director
Steve LaBel
Mayor of the District of Columbia
Vincent C. Gray
District Of Columbia Governor
President of the United States
District Of Columbia State Senate
District Of Columbia State House
U.S. Senate
U.S. House of Representatives

National Park Service: Save Jack's Boathouse from Closure!

    1. Jesse B Rauch
    2. Petition by

      Jesse B Rauch

      Washington, DC

Jack's Boathouse is a landmark small-business in the District of Columbia. They offer premiere recreational activities - and it would be a travesty if they had to close!

Jack's Boathouse is a locally-owned small business which has been operating since 1945 on the banks of the Potomac River. Thousands of people enjoy recreational activities organized by Jack's Boathouse - it would be a travesty if it closed!

However, due to "hundreds of emails from citizens concerned with the future of Jack's Boathouse over the last 24 hours," Jon Jarvis, Director of the National Park Service directed regional staff to "withhold further action on the lease termination" until he has conducted a "thorough review and determined the best course of action." Let's hope that this is an open, transparent process and that the public is involved!

See the full story here:

Stories about the closure:

Recent signatures


    1. Decision-maker Mark Keam responds:

      Mark Keam

      Thank you for contacting Delegate Mark Keam to express your support for Jack’s Boathouse. It appears that there is pending litigation filed by Jack’s Boathouse, and resolution of the matter is unclear. You can be sure that Del. Keam has...

    2. Reached 2,500 signatures
    3. Decision-maker Scott Surovell responds:

      Scott Surovell

      Jack's Boathouse is a D.C. institution! Keep it open!

    4. Reached 500 signatures
    5. Decision-maker Peter May responds:

      Peter May

      The National Park Service issued notice to Paul Simkin, the operator of Jack's Boathouse, that the lease under which the business has operated for several years is no longer considered valid. The recreational services offered and public a...

    6. Make sure you like the Facebook page too! Share widely!

      Jesse B Rauch
      Petition Organizer
      Save Jack's Boathouse from Closure

      Jack's Boathouse is a landmark small-business in the District of Columbia that has been operating...

    7. Reached 50 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • Nancy Wizner NIAGARA FALLS, NY
      • about 1 year ago

      A dog has a natural instinct to defend itself. The same as people. This was an act of self defense and nothing more. Fear from this child falling into him. He is not a vicious animal. Has never attacked anyone. Let him live. Please!!!!

    • Betsy Otto WASHINGTON, DC
      • over 1 year ago

      Jack's is a locally owned and operated treasure. The current owner has made huge improvements to the site and it is attractive and inviting and not overly expensive to rent kayaks and canoes. I don't want this to become just a concession-operated business. It's much more friendly and open that that now. I've picknicked there and whiled away many lovely hours on the river. If the NPS kicks Jack's out, I, and many others will boycott it.

    • Steve Baur WASHINGTON, DC
      • over 1 year ago

      They offer great service at fair prices and have invested heavily in improving their facility. At a minimum, the Park Service should give them a multi-year lease before mandating a competitive bid. The Park Service initiative (if you can call it that) is not in response to complaints.

    • Maggie Curme CHARLOTTE, NC
      • over 1 year ago

      As a student at Georgetown I spend many lovely afternoons kayaking down by Jacks! It's a DC institution and it should stay!!

    • Jadira Edgar SPRINGFIELD, VA
      • over 1 year ago

      Our family loves kayaking. Jack's boathouse is such a great spot!


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