The place to be!
When you think “Yacht Club” the first thing that probably comes to mind is “boats”, but there is so much more to Kelowna Yacht club than just boating. Of course, that is a huge part of the culture and many of the Club’s members are avid sailors and power-boaters, but you don’t need to own a boat to be a member.
The Club recently won the coveted “Club of the Year” for medium-sized private clubs of all kinds, an award presented by the Canadian Society of Club Managers. Kelowna Yacht Club is very proud of its new facility and the expanded amenities the Club can now offer members.
The new clubhouse, a $10-million waterfront landmark located right in the heart of downtown Kelowna, provides an opportunity for friendship and camaraderie; the clubhouse has always been a home-away-from-home for its members. The Club offers social events, volunteer opportunities, youth and adult sailing programs and watersport lessons for boaters and non-boaters alike.
The Club is a great place to have a private party, and you don’t need to be a member to have an event at the Kelowna Yacht Club. The great view and the exquisite cuisine prepared by Executive Chef Darren Kashin can be booked for events of all kinds. The Club also has meeting rooms and banquet space to meet your needs and is always just a phone call away.
Reciprocal Club Program
Members of Kelowna Yacht Club will also have access to the Club’s reciprocal club program. Not only will you have membership privileges at the clubhouse but also at many other clubs around the world. This is a program that is expanding, but presently members are still able to enjoy accommodations, dining, and more while they are traveling for business or pleasure throughout North America and several locations worldwide. Some of the best private hotel accommodations are available through the private club network. If you are an adventurous yachter, you can access reciprocal moorage at many coastal yacht clubs. And of course, closer to home, the Club has strong reciprocal memberships with the other yacht clubs on Okanagan Lake.
A Part of the Community
Beyond activities within the clubhouse and on the water, Kelowna Yacht Club members have a long tradition of playing a key role in community events and providing moorage for Central Okanagan Search and Rescue, Kelowna Fire Department and Disabled Sailing Association boats.
April is a big month for Kelowna Yacht Club, as it has the Boat Show on April 29 and 30. The Club is open to the public, including its dining facilities and docks. Visitors are welcome to come down and see the latest and greatest boats and accessories as dealers will have the new models on display. There will also be a section for those looking for used boats and a host of other vendors and activities including a new Kidz Zone this year.
The Club hosts the annual Blind Fishing Derby, in which members take visually impaired residents out to fish or simply tour around the lake. Longtime organizer Bill Mah says, “The derby each year allows me to be reacquainted with the lake and meet some extraordinary boat owners who give so much to make this day happen. We fill the clubhouse with many happy people.”
Similarly, the Boat for Hope is organized in conjunction with Variety Children’s Charity and gives kids with physical and developmental challenges a delightful day on the water, complete with pirates, food and candy treasure. What most parents of these children really appreciate is that they are encouraged to bring their family, including siblings who may not have challenges. While members again donate their time, vessels and energy to this day, they also go the extra step to dress in pirate costumes and transform their boats into pirate ships.
he Club enjoys a very large marina with 1006 slips, the largest freshwater marina in Canada. The demand for slips in the Okanagan is high and Kelowna Yacht Club offers one of the best facilities on the lake. Currently there is a waitlist for moorage, however that may change if a proposed expansion is approved adding another 100 plus slips.
Sailing, racing and competition are growing, particularly in the local community. Kelowna Yacht Club provides training and competitive sailing mentorship to encourage the further development of competitive sailing in the area. The Club has advanced competitive teams to national and international championships, and in 2017 will host the Mobility Cup a sailing regatta for disabled sailors.
Sally Howard, Kelowna Yacht Club’s General Manager, has been with the Club through its transition from small to large. Though it’s been a big change for Club members and staff, the spirit of the Club and the many friendships developed as well as the connection and a love of being on and around Okanagan Lake has not changed. For non-boaters, social and corporate memberships are a great way to belong and enjoy the views, hospitality and social connection on the waterfront. If you are interested in finding out more about what membership has to offer, Sally invites you to the Club for a personalized tour and a visit its dining facility. Just call the Club at 250-762-3310.
There is always something good happening at the Kelowna Yacht Club.