Pictured is the Catamaran Regattas that the Diamond Lake Yacht Club sponsored in the 1980s. The Yacht Club is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year. Below is an old postcard from 1940 that depics the Yacht Club and Marine Hospital. (Leader photo/Provided)
Pictured is the Catamaran Regattas that the Diamond Lake Yacht Club sponsored in the 1980s. The Yacht Club is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year. Below is an old postcard from 1940 that depics the Yacht Club and Marine Hospital. (Leader photo/Provided)

Diamond Lake Yacht Club celebrating 75 years

Published 7:08pm Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Sharon Block has been a member of the Diamond Lake Yacht Club for 10 years. Yet she is still a newcomer compared to a lot of other members.

Block, a board member for the Yacht Club, will be among the nearly 250 yacht club members celebrating the club’s 75th anniversary this weekend. But many of those members have been a part of the club for up to four generations.

Ron Francis is the club’s longest member. His father was a commodore, Francis was a commodore twice and his children are now in leadership positions with the club. He was present for the 25th and 50th anniversary celebrations and is expected to attend the 75th.

Block, who moved to the lake with her husband about 10 years ago from New Orleans, is excited to attend her first birthday celebration for the club and is looking forward to sealing her own family’s legacy with the club.

“Several couples met at their grandparent’s cottages living on the lake so it really has a deep family legacy,” Block said. “It’s exciting to be a part of living history. I’m excited about making my family mark. My grandkids were able to stay four weeks this summer and they met other kids on the lake and got together with them. The 4- and 5-year-old marked their territory which is really exciting.”

The club, which began in 1938 on a lake owner’s lawn, was originally comprised of only 48 members and its goal, according to the website dlyc.org, was to promote and conduct boat racing on Diamond Lake and to foster good fellowship among its membership.

Today the club is made up of 180 families and has expanded its goal to promoting sailing, youth development, lake preservation, water safety and social activities. This year it offered youth camps for sailing, swimming, golf, art and tennis.

The birthday celebration kicks off this weekend with a sailing regatta and cocktail party. The following weekend will hold a boat parade, “memory lane” in which historical art pieces from the generations since the club was founded will be on display, a dinner dance and a family carnival with boat and turtle races. A club-wide photograph will be taken that Sunday.

“The celebration is another milestone,” Block said. “The Yacht Club is the catalyst that got us involved from day one; it’s a great network of the lake community. I feel very fortunate to have found such a beautiful lake. I’m looking forward to attending the 100th without being in charge.”

 

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