Newsletters, Archives and Club History

Club Archives

Our archives are kept at the Wellington County Museum and Archives, County Road 18, Elora (on the Fergus-Elora Road) under the number A2008.38 They are available for anyone to peruse any time the Archives are open. Call 519-846-0916 X225 or visit www.wellington.ca/museum/

The club secretary regularly gives older documents from the executive to the Archivist Dave Hull who deposits them with the Museum and Archives. Anyone who has club material of historical value and wishes to dispose of it, please contact Dave Hull at [email protected]. Photographs with names, dates and event details would particularly be welcomed.

Recent Newsletters

May 2017

April 2017

September 2016

July 2016

May 2016

March 2016

September 2015

July 2015

May 2015

March 2015

Club History

Early Days

In 1989 Tim France wrote an article in the Guelph Power and Sail Squadron publication the Blinkin' Buoy about the Early Days of Sailing in the Guelph Area. Though this has a lot of information about the formation of our sister club on the Guelph Lake, the Guelph Community Boating Club, the first half pertains directly to the formation of our club.

Life Member Stories

In 2009 the club realised our Life Members at that time were about to or had recently turned 80 (except for a youthful 78 year old) so it decided to hold a special recognition event for them. At the party held on the deck of the clubhouse, an introduction to each of them was given, describing their contributions to the club and the reasons they were made Life Members. Sadly since then both Joe and Betty Davis have passed away, as has Olwen Morgan. Our current Life Members are Al Morgan, Derek and Audrey Street, and George Bowman.

Chronological History

EVENTS DURING THE YEARS 1974 to 1989

1974

May Guelph Sailing and Canoe Club formed by a small group of sailing enthusiasts. First Commodore – Frank Maine, First Secretary – Tim France. Membership $25.
June Facilitated by Frank Maine an agreement was reached with the Fergus Boy Scouts to lease part of their property at Lake Belwood. Opportunities for Youth grant enabled club to build docks and a motorboat at Fiberglass plant in Guelph. Ran O.S.A. Sailing School for 45 participants.
August 22 members. Commodore Frank Maine retired, having been elected to parliament; John Liefeld elected in his place.

1975

Commodore John Liefeld; 38 members.“Concepts and Prospects” document developed.One eye on Guelph Lake site due to fluctuations of water level on Belwood Lake.

1976

Commodore Tim France; 85 members. Car winch installed to pull boats out of water; later changed to a hand-operated winch. Rubber matting used as a launching ramp. Royal Flush (portable toilet) arrived. Sin Bin (storage container) erected. It took Ron Winch 3 ½ hours to mow the grass! Held Sail Power on new Guelph Lake with demos of sailboats, sailing, racing. Ran O.S.A. Sailing School. Ran Sailing Clinic for more experienced sailors.

1977

Commodore Robin Courtvriend; 100 members. Decided to incorporate; developed by-laws. Continued negotiations with G.R.C.A. re Guelph Lake site. Scouts rented the Club the front half of the building. Partition installed.First attempt to change name. Hosted the Laser Gold Cup race, Hobie Regatta, and the Canadian Mirror Championship. Active club racing schedule. Three work parties had to move boats to higher ground due to heavy rains and high water levels. Family membership $45.

1978

Commodore Burnett Derby. John Barry first on the lake amongst the iceflows, in his Laser! Improvements to the clubhouse completed, well drilled, septic system installed with help from Wintario. Hosted three invitational regattas: Laser Gold Cup, Quicksilver (Hobies), Canadian National Mirror Championship. Active club racing schedule. George Loney provided computer-produced race results. Questionnaire re Guelph Lake site submitted to members.

1979

Commodore Bill Penistan; 102 members. Sailing seminars held at Arkell Road Marine. Andrew Ponson and David Kasha beat senior Lasers. Club T-shirts and sweatshirts bought for sale to members. First August corn roast held.

1980

Commodore George Bowman; 100 membersFlag pole raised; club flag bought; trophy case built. Cement ramp installed in late Fall; interest free loans sought from members to carry club until membership fees arrived in 1981. Family membership $48.

1981

Commodore George Bowman. Held Canadian 19-And-Under Laser Championships; 45-50 keen sailors on one starting line! Cruise to Belwood village began as an annual club function.

1982

Commodore Dave Clutchey. Board sailors welcomed to membership. Hosted Wayfarer Regatta. Attempted to change name again.

1983

Commodore Dave Clutchey. Junior membership fee established; pro-rated fee schedule introduced for new members joining later in the season. New lockable entrance gate installed. Old wooden docks replaced by black plastic jet float dock system – assistance from Wintario. Sea gulls took a liking to new docks. October 15, club membership voted to change name to Belwood Lake Sailing Club. Len Hull made a Life Member in recognition of his contributions to the club since its inception.

1984

Commodore Joe Davis. Interest in racing declined (young racers getting married and having children – senior sailors buying bigger boats). Cottagers reported speeding of club members on the cottage road; speed signs posted.

1985

Commodore Joe Davis; 85 members. Activities changed from racing to social events.

1986

Commodore George Loney. Rob Bowman sailed on Good Friday! Storage shed erected to store club boats, motors, lawn-mowers, gasoline, etc. Seagulls still had a fascination with the black docks! Scavenger hunt a great success.

1987

Commodore George Loney. Wire cables replaced with wooden barriers along entrance road. New lawn-mower purchased; landscaping done in front of the clubhouse. New clubhouse doors opened up on the road side of the building. Corn roast with Ted White and his telescope.

1988

Commodore Don Fisken. Club supported the use of environmentally friendly materials at the site. Recycling programme set up.

1989

Commodore Don Fisken. 15th Anniversary. Plans started to take over the full lease and all the buildings from the Fergus Boy Scouts. Interest in racing resurfaced. Now took 12 person hours to cut the grass! Family membership $90. Club name finally changed officially to Belwood Lake Sailing Club.