Not into Yacht Clubs

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by 45Gunner, Nov 6, 2019.

  1. 45Gunner

    45Gunner Member

    Sep 22, 2019
    Boynton Beach, FL
    2000 460 Sundancer. Raymarine E120. Raymarine Open Array Radar. Autopilot. Raytheon RN300 GPS.
    Twin 450 Diamond Series 6CTA 8.3M Cummins.
    As the old line goes: I wouldn't join any club that would have me as a member. The reality of the situation is that my wife and I are both retired and we try (try being the operative word) to live within our budget. Yeah, very funny. A boat owner trying to live within a budget. Being what it may, I do not feel its necessary to throw money at an organization for the purpose of being social and attend expensive events. I am not very thrilled with these organizations that require you have a certain size boat. A boat is a boat and regardless of its size, we all have the same purpose and that is to have fun, enjoy the water, and tell "war stories" with other boaters.

    We expect to take delivery of our newest (to us) SeaRay by the end of the month. During the winter months in SE Florida, we will be doing lots of day cruising along with weekend cruising. Our summer months will be filled with long range cruising up to Cape Cod and the Islands with the long range plan of living aboard the boat for three to four months.

    Since we are just getting back into boating after a few years sabbatical, I was wondering if there are other SeaRay owners that would like to do group cruising, either locally or longer distances? I used to do that years ago and found it to be a lot of great fun and what better way to make new friends as we already share a common interest. If you might have an interest in doing this, chime in on the thread. This could be a lot of fun. BTW, my boat will be located near Two Georges Restaurant in Boynton Beach.
  2. hottoddie

    hottoddie Well-Known Member

    Jan 11, 2012
    Boston/Cape Cod
    1986 Sea Ray 390 EC
    Garmin 4212 Chartplotter
    Garmin 24 HD Radar
    Garmin 546s Plotter
    454 Crusaders
    Some people have the impression that yacht clubs are for rich people. As a rule that is not true. The vast majority of yacht clubs cost a fraction of what public commercial marinas charge and also allow you do the type of work on your boat that is now forbidden at the commercial marinas. As far as boat size of course seniority is the main factor in what slip would be made available for you vs. first one to write the check at a commercial marina. If you have and don't mind spending the $$$ there is nothing wrong with commercial marinas.
  3. stephens013

    stephens013 Active Member

    Oct 8, 2009
    Ft Walton Beach, Fl
    2001 510 Sundancer
    1997 400DA Sundancer
    1994 Chalarral 310 Signature
    3196 Cat; 660 PHP
    3116 Cat; 340 PHP
    Not a big supporter of "clubs". Spent a few evenings tied up at a yacht club in St Pete. Impressive boats and all but that's about it. No extravagant events or aminites over commercial marinas. In my neck of the woods, the Emerald Coast, the boating community is more of a lose collection of folks that just go. So grab your float, study a chart or two and just cast off.
  4. Captn TJ

    Captn TJ Active Member

    Sep 19, 2017
    Catawba Island, Oh
    2005 280DA
    Raymarine E80
    5.0 with Bravo 3
    An alternative might be a cruising club or an organization like the Power Squadron. Not sure about Florida, but here we have the "Great Lakes Cruising Club" which is a non facility based organization. One of the features is the ability to find like minded boaters.

    Also note not all yacht clubs are stuffy and boat size oriented. At our club our 280 is as welcomed as the 58'.
  5. The Bill Collector

    The Bill Collector Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Jun 2, 2008
    Tacoma, WA
    450 Sundancer
    3126 Cat's
    We are members of the Tacoma Yacht Club founded 1889. The Seattle YC & Tacoma YC are the only two clubs north of San Francisco with a fulltime bar & restaurant. We joined 13 years ago for a very a reasonable initiation fee and monthly dues are that if we stay on any of the club docks 2-3 nights per month average we have just saved $$ compared to paying commercial marina rates. The club has 8 outstations from south Puget Sound (Olympia) to Deer Harbor in the San Juans (by the Canadian border). We have a lot of boater friends we have enjoyed over the years that we have met through the club. The largest majority are very grounded hard-working people...
  6. Blueone

    Blueone Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Jan 24, 2007
    Lake Erie, Ohio
    2004 420 Sundancer
    Cummins 6CTA 450's
    Do you have a web site or Facebook page for this GLCC?... I did a quick search and didn't find anything
  7. techmitch

    techmitch Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    May 1, 2008
    Chesapeake Bay, Middle River/Frog Mortar Creek MD.
    1999 270 DA
    Twin 4.3s W/Alpa I Gen II's
  8. Gofirstclass

    Gofirstclass Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 20, 2010
    Tri Cities, WA
    1995 550 Sedan Bridge,
    2010 Boston Whaler 130 Super Sport,
    1981 Boston Whaler 130 Sport,
    CAT 3406C's, 580hp.
    The club I belong to is mostly comprised of people in their 40's and younger, many with small kids, and I'd say the average boat size runs around 28-30'.

    We have a few organized and many impromptu cruises throughout the year, several parties a year, and an every-Friday night potluck.

    No bar (it's BYO) but a great commercial kitchen we some wonderful meals have been created.

    If the club as snooty, we wouldn't belong. It ain't, so we joined.
    The Bill Collector likes this.
  9. MonacoMike

    MonacoMike Well-Known Member

    Sep 15, 2009
    Indiana lakes and Lake Michigan
    2000 Cruisers 3870
    8.2 Mercs
    85 Sea Ray Monaco 197
    260hp Alpha 1
    I'm sure the clubs you describe are glad you are not trying to join them. There are many yacht clubs that are as you describe and many that are not, some that have slips etc. and some do not. You did yourself a disservice in your post by making it about yacht clubs rather than what you really wanted to know about.

    hottoddie likes this.
  10. Captn TJ

    Captn TJ Active Member

    Sep 19, 2017
    Catawba Island, Oh
    2005 280DA
    Raymarine E80
    5.0 with Bravo 3
    You got to it faster than I did.
    We use to belong when we were crusing and it was worthwhile especially when we would get to the north channel. They have a 'harbor captain' for virtually all of the harbors and they post harbor charts that are far more accurate than what the gov does.
    techmitch likes this.
  11. endless seas

    endless seas Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor

    Feb 13, 2008
    1997 450 DA
    Cat 420
    We were in an active Yacht Club years ago and at first is was cool then it became a royal pain in the A**
    It became so political and most officers thought they were KINGS. It ruined it for so many and now the 2nd oldest club in the USA is barely hanging on by a thread.
  12. Blueone

    Blueone Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Jan 24, 2007
    Lake Erie, Ohio
    2004 420 Sundancer
    Cummins 6CTA 450's
    We have a great little yacht dues $130/year, $2.00 beers, $3.00 mixed drinks. Free popcorn and ice-cream. All member run non-profit. No volunteering or mandatory work. And great people...have made a lot of friends in a short period of time in a marina I knew no one.
  13. Chip S

    Chip S Member

    Jun 17, 2019
    Bordentown, NJ
    1993 Sea Ray 200 Overnighter
    1993 Mercury 150 hp Black Max Outboard
    We belong to a yacht club and our total expenses (dues + storage + dock space) are about 1/3 what it would cost us to keep our boat at a commercial marina. Our club requires members to contribute 5 hours per year of work plus all members who have dock space must help put the docks in in the Spring and take the docks out in the Fall. A small price to pay compared to the money we're saving. Add to that the various club events plus we can tie up at any other DRYL yacht club for free and you can't beat it. Not all yacht clubs are snooty. Ours is very much a beer and hot dogs kind of club, and we like it that way!
    The Bill Collector likes this.
  14. JimT

    JimT Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Jul 7, 2009
    Charlotte, NC- LKN
    2010 330 Sundancer
    T-350mags w/BIIIs & Axius, 5.0 kw Kohler
    We belong to a yacht club. The slip sizes range from 20' to 50'. Not snooty at all. Great facility with a pool, restaurant, banquet facilities and bar. The slip fees are competitive. The club dues is only $120 per month. They plan a lot of great activities. It works very well for us.
    The Bill Collector likes this.
  15. JVM225

    JVM225 Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 8, 2008
    Farmingdale, NY
    2002 410 Sundancer, Monaco Edition.
    3126 Cats.
    We joined a yacht club with another couple about a dozen years ago and found out it wasn’t for us.
    A friend of ours (Both couple’s) was a member at the time and convinced us to give it a shot.
    It was expensive, but we had young kids at the time (so did the other couple) and we figured it would be good for them because there was a beautiful pool and lots of kids activities.
    They had a boat basin at the club where you had to get on a list for a slip. Turned out to be BS. Several people had multiple slips and they wouldn’t tell you how many were ahead of you. Nonsense.
    There was a heading on the bay side of the barrier beach where you could go, tie up free of charge and stay several nights as long as you were spending the nights on your boat.
    Really nice place with electric, water, bathrooms, etc., and steps to the ocean side.
    We found that there were a lot of clicks. Lots of members had grown up together and were there as kids because their parents were members. Tough to break in to the groups. Even tougher for our kids.
    You had to spend a minimum amount in the clubhouse every month. A couple of family dinners with a few cocktails would cover it, so no problem. Except the food was bad and the service even worse.
    We paid initial fee, annual dues for the year and spent what we had to in the club but quit at the end of the year.
    Wound up costing a fortune because of the initiation fee, but we cut our losses and never looked back.
    We may have considered staying if we could find out where we were on the list for a slip in the basin, but our kids really hated it.
  16. The Bill Collector

    The Bill Collector Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Jun 2, 2008
    Tacoma, WA
    450 Sundancer
    3126 Cat's
    We are non-moorage members monthly dues are $120/mo and the food/bar minimum is $25/mo food or liquor. We take advantage of the outstations all season long and the numbers are in our favor. Plus a lot of great people.
    LG111 and villain style like this.
  17. Gofirstclass

    Gofirstclass Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 20, 2010
    Tri Cities, WA
    1995 550 Sedan Bridge,
    2010 Boston Whaler 130 Super Sport,
    1981 Boston Whaler 130 Sport,
    CAT 3406C's, 580hp.
    Mark, your club sounds like one I'd be comfortable with.
    45Gunner and The Bill Collector like this.
  18. mobocracy

    mobocracy Active Member

    Jun 29, 2014
    United States
    310 Sundancer
    350 Mag & Bravo III
    I'd be willing to try a club for the social aspect of it. Our marina is entirely non-social, which I guess has its advantages, but geeze, it's like people try to be non-social. A local weather forecaster is 3 slips down and she shoots dirty looks at you if you even try to say hi as you walk past.

    The guy across from me joined the lake's Power Squadron but griped about the "work" commitments running interference for early morning sailing races and I think some other "volunteer" commitments at the picnic/clubhouse setup on an island. Access to the island slips would be kind of interesting, but I figure my boat is my own island and it's got its own work commitments.

    I've done a fair amount of consulting at high-end country clubs and I'm not sure I'd want into anything with a food and beverage operation. Those are huge money sinks unless you're open to the public, plus a ton of politics on top of it.

    I guess what I want is a commune marina with cut-rate slips and friendly people..
  19. boatrboy

    boatrboy Active Member

    Oct 3, 2006
    Orange, CT
    1999 270 Da
    7.4 MPI w/B3
    I believe you have taken a bad experience and generalized all yacht clubs in that group. I have belonged to a yacht club for 12 years now and we have a full time bar and a resturaunt that operates quite a bit. We have gas docks and our members pay 10 cents over the drop price as part of our package. Non-members are welcome to fuel up too but they pay competitive rates (usually a dollar over drop price). The savings on fuel per year basically pays for my dues. We don't have docks but provide a tender operator for the boats in the mooring fields.

    My son even had his wedding on the grounds overlooking the water and believe me the cost to rent this place was peanuts.

    I could go on about the benifits, but I'll stop here. Obviously I love the club and the people who vary from all walks. I have seen the type of club you referred to but from my experience as the dock master visiting many clubs, they are the exception and not the rule.

  20. Fly'n Family

    Fly'n Family Active Member

    Sep 19, 2013
    TX / CO
    2008 Meridian 341
    2004 Boston Whaler Sport 130 w/40 hp Merc
    In reading the responses, it seems like Yacht Clubs can vary as much as their membership. We've belonged to our Yacht Club since we moved here, and it's a lot of fun. It's very inexpensive at $250/year. They do a wide variety of events, and they're all very laid back. A bunch of their events are of the charitable nature, and we enjoy contributing to those. They do some events, like renting a big paddle wheel dinner boat, that you pay something like $25/person as a member and it's all the food and booze you can consume - I always come out ahead on that one.

    We do the events we feel like doing, skip the events we don't feel like doing - or are otherwise busy doing something else. It's a very low key environment, with boats ranging from probably 20' to 55' - boat size is not a qualification to be a member. Wanting to hang out and have a good time is, and we qualify for that.
    The Bill Collector likes this.

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