Sunday, January 13, 2008

Yacht Club vs Marina

I was asked today the difference between a "Yacht Club" and a "Marina." I figured that after going thru all the work to type it up I would post it here: The major difference between a “yacht club” and a “marina” is its purpose. A “marina” is a place that provides dockage, ramps, or storage for boats. It may be publicly or privately owned. For example: McKinley Marina in Milwaukee, a publicly owned marina: Manitowoc Marina – a privately owned marina A “yacht club” is a private club organized to support the sailing/boating sport of its members. It may be very small or very large; it might be very selective in its membership policies or open to all comers. Usually a yacht club will sponsor education, racing, and outreach activities. It may have extensive and beautiful physical facilities or it might be a simple as a shack on a beach. Some examples to give you an idea of the scope: M.A.S.T. Racing A Milwaukee sailboat racing yacht club. The physical facility consists of a dock box with racing marks, a clipboard, flags, etc. The Milwaukee Yacht Club The yacht club at the North end of McKinley Marina – one of the earliest yacht clubs in the United States. Modest physical facilities – more selective in its membership primarily because it has the highest dues and fees in the area. South Shore Yacht Club The other big Milwaukee yacht club. A little more downscale than MYC. Members are required to pay some of their dues by contributing physical effort on work days. Milwaukee Community Sailing Center A non-profit open to anyone who can afford the dues. Very well supported by the community – in fact many of the MYC and SSYC members also belong to and/or support the Sailing Center. Most clubs have reciprocal membership privileges. If you are a member of one club you can use the facilities of the other clubs for a limited time as a guest. It is also true that if you are racing in a club’s racing venue you generally have unlimited access to the club during the race. Two web sites just for fun: The New York Yacht Club One of the granddaddy clubs and generally thought to be very selective – guess what – 3200 current members. Some of the most beautiful physical facilities in the world and some of the greatest lore – home of the American’s Cup for 132 years. Also has a great web site: Chicago Yacht Club Another granddaddy and home of one of the most famous sailboat races in the world, the Chicago – Mackinac. This year will be the 100th running of the 333 mile race. There are expected to be 400 boats in the race – with a crew minimum of 5 per boat (most will race with 9 – 11) that is a minimum of 2,000 guests at the yacht club for the week of the race. Lots of famous names have been in the race – the record was held by Roy Disney for many years. Only quote you need to know “see you at the pony.” Have fun – hope this helps.

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