August 14, 2022

History

In 1965, West River Yacht and Cruising Club was formed as West River Yacht and Country Club on Grosse lle. The organization operated a nine hole golf course and marina facility built on the former Knudsen summer residence, located on West River Road across from Detroit Edison on the Trenton Channel.

In 1970, application to join the Inter-Lakes Yachting Association (I-LYA) was made and we received interim membership with full membership status finally granted in 1973. Around 1974, there was a disagreement between responsible parties resulting in the loss of this facility as our home & Grosse lle Township took over management of the property and opened the facility now known as Waters Edge Country Club.

WRYCC entered a period of time where the membership was met with both struggle and challenge. Over the next several years, the membership began to dwindle to lower than average numbers, and then finally rebounded to our current levels. Club membership current averages around 100 members. Through it all, several of our long-term members kept hopes high and expectations reasonable to be a viable entity with our fellow yacht clubs. Although no longer officially connected with the Township property, WRYCC continued to function as a viable yacht club, holding monthly meetings at various locations in the downriver area and our membership within I-LYA remained intact due in large part to the efforts of lifetime member Paul Migda, P/C Bob Lang, P/C Bob Campbell and P/C Dick Kott, to mention a few. The name was changed at this time to West River Yacht and Cruising Club to better reflect the clubs central purpose.

In 2001, we were presented with the opportunity of returning to our roots, which in 2002, the membership overwhelmingly voted to do. Grosse Ile Township named WRYCC as the official yacht club for the facility knowns as Water’s Edge Municipal Marina. In 2003, we were granted full membership into the Associated Yacht Clubs (AYC), a group of about 32 yacht clubs sharing the western end of Lake Erie and the Detroit River, all members of our parent I-LYA organization.

In 2019 we were approached by Scott & Tom (the owners of Smokies), to join efforts in helping each other out.   By the beginning of 2020 with the hard work of P/C Bob Lang, P/C Charlie Mlynarski, P/C Dawn Shoemaker & P/C Keith Postma, hanging burgees, Past Commodore photos, bulletin boards, and much more that we can call Smokies on the Water our home.  Thank you Scott & Tom for making your home our home.

Over the years, we have continued to be a moving, growing and exciting club with many activities and outings available for our members to enjoy, along with an increasing interaction with our fellow yacht clubs.