AUTHOR DIPS INTO HISTORY OF THE NAVESINK

rik-van-hemmenRik vanHemmen, author of the newly published “A Chronology of Boating On the Navesink.” (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

van-hemmen-coverRik van Hemmen has been all over the world and seen just about every major body of water worth experiencing, from his native Rotterdam, Holland to the  shores of Newport, Rhode Island — the long way and the short.

None has come close to the diversity of the Navesink River, he said, where one can drop a line in the water, hunt for ducks, spot an eagle, boat out to the Atlantic or jaunt up to New York City.

“I found out that the Navesink is really a unique piece of water,” said van Hemmen. “The core of it is it allows so much to be done that you can’t find anywhere else.”

Steeped in all things nautical, to say the least — marine consultant, engineer, boat builder and vice president of the Navesink Maritime Heritage Association —  51-year-old van Hemmen has an appreciation for the Navesink that’s unrivaled.

And he wants others to share his love for what he calls our area’s “zen garden.” So he wrote a book about it.

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