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-   -   Why join a yacht club? (http://www.trawlerforum.com/forums/s3/why-join-yacht-club-46962.html)

Vashon_Trawler 10-07-2019 04:50 PM

Why join a yacht club?
 
Hoping to be a more "social" boater, I explored various yacht clubs in my area. The clubs generally had various activities and events--many would be of interest to my wife and daughter. Well, I checked the membership applications and they require a sponsor or are invitation only. No thanks. The whole concept seems snooty. How do I find someone to sponsor me if I don't know anyone in the club? Hang around the marina all day looking for someone to be my friend? I understand the need to keep bad apples away but no wonder yacht club memberships are dwindling.

tiltrider1 10-07-2019 04:56 PM

Instead of bad mouthing Yacht Clubs, you could ask here for help finding a sponsor, or call the Yacht Club and ask them to put you in touch with a potential sponsor. Yacht clubs are rarely snobbish, more often others think they are snobby because they are afraid to call and ask for help.

djmarchand 10-07-2019 05:07 PM

Well, it isn't that difficult or snooty to join a yacht club. Many yacht clubs are actively looking for new members and encourage applying for membership. I stopped in East Greenwich Yacht club a few years ago, met the club secretary (the full time employee, not the recording secretary) and she introduced me to a few members. Within a few days I had two sponsors lined up and sent in my application.

The one time initiation fee was reasonable, something in the 1-2 thousand dollar range. The annual dues plus the cost of a mooring (slips had an impossible long waiting list) was cheaper than anything available nearby.

You have to get engaged socially to really enjoy yacht club membership. The club had weekly catered burger/pizza type dinners (for less than $10 ea), a nice bar open each night where drinks were 2/3 the price of nearby bars, an evening cocktail, band and dining event several times a year and an annual club cruise up LI Sound to BI and Shelter Island which always had an evening get together.

We really enjoyed going down, anchoring out the first night, coming back to the mooring and hanging out in the afternoon having a drink and chatting with like minded members.


Oh and winter haulout and storage on club property was 2/3 of nearby marina costs.

David

Mikala 10-07-2019 05:09 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Why join? This is the only reason I can come up with.
Attachment 94983

Bacchus 10-07-2019 05:30 PM

In many yacht clubs the "sponsor" simply is the person responsible to introduce the new members to old and is the person to "have a talk" to the new member if they are violating any rules whether explicit or unspoken. They are there to provide "guidance".
If you dont already know a member I would bet they might introduce you to someone... unless you have made a bad first impression and then all bets are off.

dhays 10-07-2019 05:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by tiltrider1 (Post 808905)
Instead of bad mouthing Yacht Clubs, you could ask here for help finding a sponsor, or call the Yacht Club and ask them to put you in touch with a potential sponsor. Yacht clubs are rarely snobbish, more often others think they are snobby because they are afraid to call and ask for help.


This is a good suggestion. Most clubs love to get new members, at least in the PNW. They may require a sponsor but for the most part that is a holdover from by-gone days. It does ensure that someone has had the chance to meet and chat with the prospective member.


I'm a member of one of the oldest Yacht Clubs in Puget Sound. When it was in 1890, it was seen as a socially upscale thing to have, important to image of a booming city ready to make its mark on the world. Seattle Yacht Club had been founded a few years before and heaven forbid Seattle have something that Tacoma didn't. Along came the depression in the 1890s and pretty much bankrupted the club until 1900.



In any case, our club, like most, is actively looking for new members. They may be going about it in the smartest way, but they are looking. I'm sure that any club that you would want to be a member of, would love to have you. Call them up and ask. They will have a membership committee and a membership chair that would likely love to chat.

tiltrider1 10-07-2019 05:53 PM

Every Yacht Club is different as are the reasons for joining. My Yacht Club has 10 outstations plus reciprocal privileges around the world. Club moorage is below market, our dinning room is first class, I get invited to participate in events around the world. I’ve been invited to have lunch with famous coaches, players, America Cup sailors, the list goes on. I don’t have time to participate in more than 10% of official Yacht Club functions. Then there are all the unofficial get togethers while cruising.

dhays 10-07-2019 06:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by tiltrider1 (Post 808925)
Every Yacht Club is different as are the reasons for joining. My Yacht Club has 10 outstations plus reciprocal privileges around the world. Club moorage is below market, our dinning room is first class, I get invited to participate in events around the world. Iíve been invited to have lunch with famous coaches, players, America Cup sailors, the list goes on. I donít have time to participate in more than 10% of official Yacht Club functions. Then there are all the unofficial get togethers while cruising.


David makes an excellent point. His yacht club (Seattle Yacht Club) has an unrivaled selection of club outstations. That alone would be worth membership. My wife is NOT a yacht club type person. She love spending time with close friends and family, but as an introvert, spending time with distant acquaintances or someone just because they fly the same burgee is very draining for her. As such, we just don't participate in most yacht club functions or cruises. Having said that, I almost always enjoy the members when I run into them when we are boating. I also fly my yacht club burgee whenever we leave the dock.



Membership for us has been primarily about use of the facilities. For a long time we took advantage of favorable moorage rates in the yacht club basin. We also take advantage of the yacht club outstations around the Sound and San Juans as well as the reciprocal privileges. Yacht Club membership has been worth it to us despite us being rather anti-social as a couple.

Comodave 10-07-2019 07:02 PM

Our yacht club is a small club that had been struggling to stay afloat. It is fairly cheap and we support it by being a member but rarely use any of the facilities. We are in a small community and we like to support local organizations.

Airstream345 10-07-2019 07:11 PM

Lot's of reasons to join. Friends, fun, cruising, outstations, reciprocity, education, sharing, etc.

We didn't think of ourselves as "Yacht Club people" but joined one here in Seattle and love it. Posted something about it here:

https://mvfortitude.com/2018/10/05/i...he-yacht-club/ .

Turned out to be a great decision for all the reasons above and more.

Find the one that is right for you. Most clubs are struggling as member age and their children become too busy to join or own boats.

GFC 10-07-2019 07:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Comodave (Post 808954)
Our yacht club is a small club that had been struggling to stay afloat. .

My wife and I both proudly wear our shirts from your club!

Before joining any club you should investigate it. Some clubs are made up of mostly older members. They often don't do much cruising but rather spend their time badmouthing the members who are not present to defend themselves. We used to be long to one like that. (Key phrase "used to")

We now belong to a club that has a LOT of younger members and it seems like tons of youngsters running around at the meetings. It's much more fun, much more active, and there isn't the badmouthing that was the common theme at the last club.

Our club is widely known up and down the Columbia River as the friendliest club in the PNW. We work hard to keep up that reputation. :dance:

JLD 10-07-2019 07:16 PM

As that great philosopher Groucho Marx once said,"I don't care to belong to any club that will have me as a member." :D :ermm: :rofl:

Seriously though, clubs run the whole gamut from very snooty to very friendly. The trick, of course, is to find one that you feel comfortable with. Some invitation only clubs, are not that hard to get invite into, while others really are much more difficult.

Personally, the prestige thing means nothing to me. It would be the offering of the club that attracted me.

Jim

koliver 10-07-2019 07:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dhays (Post 808947)
David makes an excellent point. His yacht club (Seattle Yacht Club) has an unrivaled selection of club outstations. That alone would be worth membership. My wife is NOT a yacht club type person. She love spending time with close friends and family, but as an introvert, spending time with distant acquaintances or someone just because they fly the same burgee is very draining for her. As such, we just don't participate in most yacht club functions or cruises. Having said that, I almost always enjoy the members when I run into them when we are boating. I also fly my yacht club burgee whenever we leave the dock.

Membership for us has been primarily about use of the facilities. For a long time we took advantage of favorable moorage rates in the yacht club basin. We also take advantage of the yacht club outstations around the Sound and San Juans as well as the reciprocal privileges. Yacht Club membership has been worth it to us despite us being rather anti-social as a couple.

I am a member of BTTBDYCITWDW. The Royal (SNOOTY) Vancouver YC which I joined in 1987. The outstations and the people are the whole reason for belonging. We have 7 fabulous outstations, including the one nearby on Saltspring. They are world class. The social life this gives us is the best.
If you are considering a YC, you have to be committed to taking advantage of its amenities. We joined when our kids were small, not to get more boating, but to get better boating. It delivered. Our kids made life long friends once we went on a few of the kid friendly cruises. We adults made life long friends as well. At a recent party my guest list of 40 was 3/4 from the YC. The other 1/4 were family and neighbours.
We also enjoy two of the best marinas in Vancouver and a clubhouse that is also world class. The cost of all of this is far below that of other Vancouver area marinas.
Our initiation and annual fees are far below those of similar but not Yacht clubs and provides much more for every member of our family. My 2 sons each have boats in the YC and enjoy their memberships to the max.

Now, talk about snooty: Last December we did a Med Cruise that stopped in at Monte Carlo. We went to the Monaco Yacht Club to exercise our reciprocal priviledges. They wouldn't let us in. 1 we didn't measure up to their dress code and 2 Our Club executive hadn't sent them a letter telling MYC we were coming and asking permission to enter the premises. None of that BS happens at RVYC.

Take a look at the websites of whatever YC you are interested in.

rsn48 10-07-2019 07:50 PM

Different yacht clubs offer different things. For me, the club with the most reciprocal agreements at the cheapest cost is the one for me.

Moonfish 10-07-2019 07:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Vashon_Trawler (Post 808900)
I understand the need to keep bad apples away but no wonder yacht club memberships are dwindling.

Our Port Townsend Yacht Club just had 18 new members join last month! We've been members for 5 years and the club has grown every year.

BruceK 10-07-2019 07:54 PM

In my sailing days I was competing in sailboat class races for my boat with Royal Sydney Yacht Club which is as good a Club as any in Sydney, not limited to Yacht Clubs either, and was approached by other member competitors to join.
My present Club is RMYC on Pittwater in Sydney, TF member AndyG and a relative gave me references to join. We hardly use the Club, not sure why I just renewed, but I did.
I think the idea Clubs are snooty is mostly wrong, most Clubs would help you join. The Halvorsen Club here had such alarming restrictions for Island Gypsy owners I decided to avoid it. Look around, choose carefully, something will suit you.

MurrayM 10-07-2019 08:52 PM

TF is kinda club-ish and even has a burgee :hide:

Donna 10-07-2019 09:04 PM

I would sponsor you. Where are you?

Kaz 10-07-2019 09:04 PM

Don't knock it till you have tried it. While the words "Yacht Club" sound snooty, most are the complete opposite, at least in our area.

Joining will find you socially with a whole new group of people who you might actually like. The reciprocal privileges of being able to use the facilities, dockage, mooring, bars, and restaurants at other clubs can be reason alone for some to join.

Call the club, ask if you can attend a meeting or if someone might be interested in sponsoring someone. Worst thing, you go to a meeting or 2 and don't hit it off. Quit or don't join or try out another club. Boaters in general tend to be very nice people and the bond of boating crosses the socioeconomic differences.

dhays 10-07-2019 09:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by koliver (Post 808985)
Now, talk about snooty: Last December we did a Med Cruise that stopped in at Monte Carlo. We went to the Monaco Yacht Club to exercise our reciprocal priviledges. They wouldn't let us in. 1 we didn't measure up to their dress code and 2 Our Club executive hadn't sent them a letter telling MYC we were coming and asking permission to enter the premises. None of that BS happens at RVYC.


I had similar experiences at the Royal Canadian Yacht Club in Toronto. It is located on an island off Toronto and can only be accessed by the RCYC launch or by boat. At that time, to get on the launch a gentleman had to be wearing a coat and tie. Visiting boaters from reciprocal clubs (we were coming from the Youngstown Yacht Club with my uncle on his sailboat) could use the yacht club facilities but still couldn't enter the club house without coat and tie (they did have a few blazers and ties available for the US riff-Raff to borrow in extremes). We could use the tennis court, but of course proper tennis attire was required and that meant all white.


Their current dress codes are a bit more lax, but still not a setting that I'm comfortable with. We are pretty casual out here on the West coast.


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