Wednesday, December 16, 2015
Annapolis Landmark Burned
The Annapolis Yacht Club, which traces its roots to 1886, was destroyed in a massive fire December 12th. The club lost many historic artefacts and trophies.
The fire forced the cancellation of the annual Annapolis Eastport Yacht Club Lights Parade, an important tourist attraction which draws 20,000 spectators. What started 33 years ago with people on a few boats singing Christmas carols had become one of the biggest events in Annapolis, and hotel rooms facing the water were booked years in advance.
As yacht club leaders went through the burnt ruins of the club focus shifted to rebuilding and relocating. “It’s a tragedy, but the wonderful news this holiday season is that … the public wasn’t in there, the members weren’t there and the staff got out. Everybody was safe,” said Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, who surveyed the clubs destruction. Governor Hogan and Annapolis Mayor Mike Pantelides have vowed to clear red tape to help the club rebuild quickly. The club is considering moving the location and promises to rebuilt the facility bigger and better than ever.
Annapolis is a gathering point for cruisers heading south including hundreds of Canadian boaters who generally show up around Boat Show Time. Many members, cruisers and Boat Show attendees hold the club near and dear to their hearts. Our first visit to the club was back in the late 1970 ’s. It was always interesting to have a drink at the bar and view all of the historic trophies and boat models. We hope they get back on their feet soon.