Hey, Members, Can You Spare Some Time?

by Mark Schroeder, Membership/Marketing Committee Chair

It's no secret that the vast majority of members of Eugene Yacht Club are dedicated volunteers. They rebuild docks, run Sail School, cook up meals for hundreds, pull weeds. Whatever needs to be done, EYC members get it done. But the Membership/Marketing committee would like to ask members to give just a bit more. Why? Keep reading!

Increased membership numbers would enable EYC to offer more to our members and increase the value of your EYC membership. Better docks, lots more activities, maybe even a new restroom!

Imagine EYC as a go-to place for family and friend entertainment. A place to just hang out. A place where something is always going on. Where you could learn new things or share your knowledge with friends and acquaintances. Can you see the possibilities?

Increased membership helps make an better EYC possible because the more members doesn't has a negligible impact on many of our fixed costs. Major expenditures like the Bang’s lease, the Corps’ lease, ground maintenance, etc., are marginally affected by increased use. The gain in revenue would allow EYC to expand programs and activities. We need to think big! Increased membership could mean an activities director or summertime sailing coach or an expanded clubhouse.

Membership numbers are influenced by several factors:

  • Marketing (getting our name out there and getting folks interested)
  • Quick and easy processing and joining procedures
  • Retention of existing members.

We believe adding activities will help to increase membership because the value of being an EYC member would increase. A large group of interested members met in January to brainstorm ideas for how to add value to our memberships and increase retention. You can see this list below.

We’re asking each member to do is just a little more, because if we all do a little bit, it will pay huge dividends. As you look at the list of ideas, is there something that sparks your interest and imagination? If so, please take the next step and let us know how you might be able to lend a hand to that effort. It doesn't have to be a lot, we're just looking for everyone to give a little bit. Could you set your boat up on a Wednesday some time in the summer and offer to take kids or less experienced sailors out? Could you help others launch and have them help you?  Could you investigate the costs of a concert, an informal meal? Or do you have some ideas of your own that you'd think would enhance our club? Please fill out the survey after the list and let us know!

If everyone just does a little bit, we can accomplish a lot.

Proposed Activities

  • Open Houses Sailing or Paddling Opportunities
    Open houses are held twice this summer on two busy EYC days. Would you be willing to be on the grounds with a ready kayak, power boat, or sailboat and let folks look around or even go on a ride?
  • Parks and Recreation
    Eugene Parks and Recreation graduates a sail class about once a week. Gary Powell is willing to organize this, but would you be willing to meet with one or more of these graduating classes (usually on a Friday or Saturday) and give them a short talk of the benefits of EYC membership and provide information?
  • Other Non-sailing boating experiences—paddle, power.
    Many EYC members enjoy different types of “paddle-power” craft and power boats. Would you be willing to lead or share your experience with others? Could be a simple as advertising a group event and being sure to show up!
  • Booths—Boat Shows, Art and the Vineyard
    Magic Garcia and Michael Tieman have shown an interest in organizing a booth event (or more, eventually) held in Lane County—for example the “Art and the Vineyard” or the Eugene Sportsman and Boat Show. The activity would require development of print and visual materials and folks to “man” a multi-day event. Would you be willing to help organize or “man” such an event?
  • More Music Events 
    Amanda Walkup is interested in looking at expanding our Concert by the Lake to use as a recruitment event and others have asked to have more music events in the summer. Would you be willing to work on a committee to flesh out this concept and explore costs and groups that may be willing to play (probably very cheaply) at EYC?
  • New Member Activities
    The idea here is plan an activity, perhaps similar to the Skippers and Mates dinner, which is for new members only to meet each other and share interests. Would you be willing to help plan or implement a once a year event?
  • Boat Maintenance
    Some of us have expertise! Would you be willing to publicize and organize an event that you know about? For example, “Thistle Tuning” or “Boat Motor Winterizing”?
  • Prepare a low-cost meal four times each year
    Some yacht clubs offer $10 or less meals ready to eat. Could be a simple preparation event (hot dogs, chips, and drinks) or a vendor could be contacted. The idea would be that instead of a potluck, which requires effort, a member could go to the club on Saturday and spend the day on the water and have an inexpensive meal waiting. Could be held with another activity (football game, America’s Cup watch party, full moon). Would you be willing to work with others to offer this?
  • Watch Parties
    America’s Cup starts soon and Bill Powell has offered to organize a watch party. Could you help? Or would you like to organize a watch party for some other event like March Madness, a Ducks game, or maybe a family-friendly movie?
  • Mentorship
    Would you be willing to help another sailor hone his or her skills? Could be by request or more of a small group course. “Docking under motor” and “Roll tacking” come to mind. John Ward and John Pfanner are interested in organizing sailors helping sailors. Would you be willing to offer your expertise?
  • Wednesday PM Adult and Youth Instruction
    We already have an ongoing youth sailing and adult sailing program with Evert Slijper and Chris Thomas volunteering many hours. Would you be willing to help with rescue, instruction and/or preparation to expand this program? Could you help out one or more times?
  • Organize a Spring Launch
    Many members could use extra hands when they put their “big boats” in. Would you be willing to assist big boat sailors and power boaters launch their boats for the season? Could you help one or two days?
  • Communicate with Other Yacht Clubs 
    EYC hosts two major regattas and other events each year. Would you be willing to contact nearby yacht clubs and offer to advertise their events and they could encourage their members to participate in EYC events?
  • Other Ideas
    Have you ever thought "It would be great if EYC would do this?" If so, this is your opportunity to be heard! We want to hear how you think we can make EYC an even better place.

Please let the Membership/Marketing committee know where your interests lie by filling out this quick survey.