A Message from the BYC Board of Directors
Welcome to our cyber clubhouse. We hope you'll find some useful
information here. Please visit our Facebook page for up-to-date news and event
information. If you have any specific questions, please get in touch with us! Go to our
contact page for phone numbers, maps, and email.
And to everyone, we extend the warmest of welcomes to come and visit us in person, to share in the magic of the beautiful Bras d'Or Lakes for which our club is named.
"It is the mission of the Bras d’Or Yacht Club to provide our members and guests a safe and enjoyable social and recreational experience, to foster the delivery of safe boating education and to enhance the experience of our youth."
For almost a century, the Bras d'Or Yacht club has stood at the Baddeck shoreline, greeter to all who enter the harbour.
The clubhouse - with its slipway, flagstaff and viewing verandas, are so much a part of the waterfront of Baddeck, that it is hard to image the community without it. But in fact, for the first decade of its existence, the Bras d'Or Yacht Club had no such home base. Meetings were held at Gertrude Hall, the courthouse and in member's main street offices. Minute books from the earliest club days, detail searches for the most basic of yacht club needs - a patch of water frontage to launch boats and a location where sailing trophies could be presented and displayed.
Today, the clubhouse is a vital part of the village's tourism infrastructure. It is a community meeting place. It has played host to birthday parties, kids Halloween dress-up contests, wedding celebrations, regatta festivities and provides a homey gathering place for sailors and friends.
The Bras d'Or Yacht Club's past is interwoven with the history of the village itself.
The Bras d’Or Yacht Club’s upper lounge provides a warm, welcoming atmosphere where you can relax, socialize and absorb the breathtaking views of the Bras d’Or Lake. Our full service bar is open year round, seven days a week and welcomes members and non-members alike.
Extending the length of the upper lounge our balcony offers comfortable deck furniture, and a wonderful place to view yachts sailing on the lake, or the day’s sunset. Access to the balcony is gained from the waterfront or from the upper lounge.
Our lower hall provides an ideal setting for hosting a variety of private functions, accommodating up to 100 guests. Bar services, kitchen facilities, sound equipment, and restrooms are available. The facilities of the lower hall can be extended outside on the club wharf with the use of commercial tenting.
A large wharf at the face of the clubhouse can accommodate boats for temporary docking, and dinghy traffic to and from our moorings. Adjacent to the club wharf is our launch ramp which can accommodate just about any sized boat, launched from a personal trailer or by commercial lift.
THE TILLER & WHEEL CLUBHOUSE BAR - Upstairs
FULLY LICENSED BAR
42” LCD TV
ACCESS TO BALCONY
ACCESS TO WIRELESS INTERNET
THE MOORINGS – Downstairs
FULLY LICENSED BAR
Suitable for PRIVATE FUNCTIONS such as WEDDINGS, BIRTHDAY PARTIES, RETIREMENT PARTIES, ANNIVERSARIES, CHRISTMAS & OTHER HOLIDAY EVENTS
BUSINESS FUNCTIONS, MEETINGS & SEMINARS
COMMUNITY FUNCTIONS, FUND RAISERS & HEALTH & WELLNESS ACTIVITIES
Commercial tents can be arranged in advance to accommodate larger groups.
SHORT TERM DOCKAGE
POWER & WATER (fees may apply)
LAUNCH RAMP FOR TRAILERS
Additional mooring and docking facilities are available in Baddeck Harbour provided by Baddeck Marine and Cape Breton Boatyard, both full service marinas.
It might be argued whether the first clubhouse was Gertrude Hall the Court House or the office of Dr. MacIver. While it is known that the first meeting took place in the Court House, the motion to declare the first Commodore, C.T. Carruth was held in Gertrude Hall. The idea to build a formal Clubhouse was adopted by the membership in 1912.
The newly completed building, built to plans drawn by a Washington architect; hosted its first meeting on July 3rd 1913. Pre-build estimates were in the $400 dollar range. This money was donated by the membership. Over the years a number of significant additions and renovations have taken place but the original design is still clearly evident particularly within the southern facade. No longer the modest wood floored one room (plus RC loft) building delivered in 1913, the club has expanded to include over three levels including the junior annex.
Our current facilities consist of two buildings located on the Baddeck waterfront. The smaller of the two building is referred to as the "Junior Club". The Junior Club was formerly a portable classroom and has been annexed to the clubhouse with a recent addition that houses barrier free washrooms and a breezeway. The junior club has been extensively renovated and is in good condition.
Half of the building, facing our beach, is dedicated to youth training. This area has been fitted with new windows and doors, including a new roll-up door to facilitate entry and removal of sail training vessels, and serves as both a classroom and fleet maintenance area. The other half of the building houses washrooms and laundry facilities.
The senior club is two story, slab on grade with a loft. In addition to the large multifunction room, the ground floor also houses the kitchen, furnace room, washrooms and business office. The multifunction area is used primarily as a dance or meeting space and opens directly onto our licensed private waterfront concourse.
The upstairs portion of the senior clubhouse houses an additional washroom plus a lounge and bar with a breathtaking vista of Great Bras d’Or. The lounge area opens directly onto a large licensed balcony overhanging the concourse. A display case accommodating a wealth of nautical memorabilia chronicling our one hundred year history enhances the "clubhouse" feeling.
The floor loft area is reserved for race management space as it has been from the beginning. Much of the current condition of our Clubhouse facilities is due to a generous donation towards the Junior Club in honor of departed member Harry Sullivan. The junior Clubhouse project included a large beachfront deck, updated wiring and the replacement of most of the doors and windows. Some work remains to be completed on this building, particularly relating to the north end which houses the showers and laundry.
The senior Clubhouse condition is largely the result of a major restoration project in honor of our 2004 centenary. This project received a supporting grant from Enterprise Cape Breton Corporation on New Year’s Eve 2003 and began in earnest in March 2004, just four months before anniversary celebration plans.
Preliminary work revealed structural deficiencies so extreme as to threaten the integrity of the entire structure. Work was halted and engineers were contracted to provide an analysis and recommendation. It was suggested that the club faced two alternatives; to install structural steel supports under the second and third floors braced to ground level and replace the entire roof framing or to level the building and start again. Continued occupancy of the existing building was not an option. Not willing to allow this important heritage building to come to its demise a team of over thirty five volunteers and a fleet of donated equipment assembled to face this challenge on April10, 2004.
By evening the next day the roof had been removed, new trusses had been installed in its place, and the last roof shingle had been tarred in place. Volunteers had carted away the debris, raked the yard with magnets to corral old nails, and washed the dishes from two days of feeding a hungry crew. A new club spirit was in evidence and a can-do attitude prevailed.
Today structural steel has replaced decayed and rotting posts. New beams support both the second floor and the loft and new wiring provides a safe path for all electrical circuits in the building. The truss work allowed for a dramatic new ceiling and the familiar slant to the floor is no more. New washrooms service not only the membership but the public waterfront as well. Space was provided to accommodate a future addition to the kitchen and a business office sits where the "old" ladies washroom once was.
A long way from its beginnings but true to its spirit, the BYC clubhouse sits ready to continue its role welcoming visiting sailors and providing a comfortable meeting place for our members.
Property Chairman 2004
Past Commodore 2005 - 2008