Seeing the close interaction among neighboring clubs and multiple club social events fostered by strong local yachting organizations in the Mid-Atlantic Region as well as a desire among local clubs for frequent meetings entirely dedicated to state and local activities of creating such an organization for yacht clubs in Maryland. Foremost in their minds were the nearby Delaware River Yachtsmen's League (DRYL) and the Potomac River Yacht Clubs Association (PRYCA), both of which had long histories of success and excellent cooperation of mutual benefit with regional and national yachting organizations.
On March 23, 2005, individuals from Red Eye Yacht Club, Belvedere Yacht Club, Riverside Yacht Club, and Marley Boat Club formed and Exploratory Committee to meet and discuss the need to have an organization that would represent Maryland boaters on local issues and foster more beneficial interaction among yacht clubs in Maryland. This meeting was held at Riverside Yacht Club of MD. An agenda for the formation of a new organization and proposed by-laws were discussed and developed. In addition, the committee believed that temporary leadership was needed to facilitate the meetings, take notes, and ensure that the meetings were run in accordance with parliamentary order. Jill Cashman (Red Eye) was appointed Chairperson, Faye Broseker (Riverside) was appointed Secretary, and Joe Hellner (Belvedere) was appointed Parliamentarian. The duties of these individuals would end upon the founding of the new organization and election of the first Officers and Board Members. Subsequent to the meeting of the exploratory committee, letters were sent out to all Maryland yacht clubs inviting them to attend a meeting on March 30, 2005 to discuss the feasibility of establishing a new organization.
On March 30, 2005, the Initial Exploratory Meeting was held at Red Eye Yacht Club to investigate the level of interest of Maryland yacht clubs in forming a state based yacht club organization. The meeting was well attended by 15 yacht clubs and lively discussion ensued. A second exploratory meeting, attended by 20 Maryland yacht clubs was held at Red Eye Yacht Club on April 27, 2005. The concept of the new organization was further refined and details were settled to form the basis for a set of bylaws. The Bylaws Committee consisted of Faye Broseker (Riverside), Lou Konopacki (Ventnor), Anna Davis (White Rocks), John Cashman (Red Eye), and Jerry Cramblett (Ventnor & Chesapeake Commodores Club). The Bylaws Committee met weekly for three weeks at Sis and Lou Konopacki's home to complete the proposed bylaws to be voted on at the founding meeting and the formation of a Maryland Corporation. The revised by-laws would be presented to the Maryland yacht clubs in attendance at the next meeting to be held on May 25, 2005 at Belvedere Yacht Club. In addition, a name for the new organization was also voted on at the April 27 meeting, whereby the 17 clubs in attendance selected Yacht Clubs of Maryland (YCM).
Yacht Clubs of Maryland was founded on May 25, 2005 at Belvedere Yacht Club by vote of 20 founding yacht clubs, which were Baltimore Yacht Club, Belvedere Yacht Club, Boumi Yacht Club, Bush River Yacht Club, Chesapeake Commodores Club (CCC), Crescent Yacht Club, Galloway Yacht Club, Goose Harbor Yacht Club, Kent Island Yacht Club, Key Yacht Club, Marley Yacht Club, Maryland Yacht Club, North Point Yacht Club, Outcast Yacht Club, Red Eye Yacht Club, Riverside of MD Yacht Club, Sue Have Yacht Club, Ventnor Yacht Club, Wellwood Yacht Club, and White Rocks Yacht Club. Jill Cashman of Red Eye Yacht Club was elected to be the Founding Commodore. The Founding Bridge was V/C Faye Broseker of Riverside Yacht Club, R/C Lou Konopacki of Ventnor YC, LAO Joe Hellner of Belvedere Yacht Club, Secretary Anna Davis of White Rocks Yacht Club, Treasurer Dan Miller of Belvedere Yacht Club, Board Members: Dennis Lunsford of Maryland Yacht Club, Conrad Ragone of Baltimore Yacht Club, and Acting IP/C Jerry Cramblett of Ventnor Yacht Club and Chesapeake Commodores Club. The official year of YCM was voted to run from October 1st to September 30th. The Founding Bridge served an extra four months during the summer through September of 2005 to complete the many details needed to get the new organization up and running.
The first ear saw the creation of several new all yacht club events including the popular Annual Yacht Clubs of Maryland Golf Tournament, the Commodores Night Out, the Annual Fleet Captains Meeting, Christmas at Laurel Race Track, and an all club boat cruise and raft up. In addition, a network of volunteers with local knowledge and interest was developed under YCM to dig into local boating and waterway issues, assist organizations such CBYCA, MTAM, and the Dundalk Alliance, and to increase dialogue with our elected representatives and government officials. On the communications front, the BAY BREEZE monthly newsletter and an internet web site were started to help member clubs with stories, advice, and upcoming yacht club events around Maryland. Monthly alternating Board and General Membership Meetings were initiated, which feature and informal relaxed atmosphere emphasizing free and open discussion.
Publications have become an interest area, with creation of the SHIP'S LOG, a member club directory and yearbook featuring general interest information about member clubs and their activities. The newsletter includes a regular column on yacht club protocols, practices, and practical advice call Protocol Matters, which has been very well received.
On the silly fun side, a YCM Skunk Flag award was created by Salty Sam the Sea Dog to "honor" members with special nautical or yacht club adventures. Salty also helped find pins for members of the notorious "Can Man" group while Santa Claus continues to do his bit to honor Maryland's horse racing tradition.
2019 is the 14th year of existence for YCM. It has welcomed 33 clubs and continues as a place for yacht clubs in the State of Maryland to share ideas, to communicate, and to foster friendship. In or around 2006 Kate and Jerry Cramblett jumped into the organize a VIP visit by the Queen of the Chesapeake and her princesses to attend the Delaware River Yachtsmen's League Queen's Pageant; and this tradition continues to exist. In 2008, the YCM met with organizers and voted to add YCM support and endorsement to the Yacht Clubs of the Bay Family Picnic. The year 2013 gave way for sister clubs' participation in the Queen of the Chesapeake Pageant and the formation of a "Queen's Pageant Committee", which member clubs are now serving on that committee; as well as representatives from YCM. YCM holds the annual: Fleet Captain's Dinner, Rocky Point Golf Outing, and Christmas at Laurel Park. We are always looking to add events, and hope, too, that they will become longstanding traditions. Others may be only one time events. No idea is a bad idea. What's next? Let us hear from you! A fishing tournament? A poker run? The Raft-up? Let us hear your ideas!!!! Remember "YCM provides services to your clubs".
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