Chautauqua Lake Power Boat Club

Club History

The Chautauqua Lake Power Boat Club was conceived during a casual conversation in the spring of 1944 at the Lawson Boat Yard one Sunday morning, while doing the usual Spring Reconditioning on the boats. This informal beginning resulted in organization meetings held at the Hotel Jamestown from which the following officers were elected: Claude W. Larcombe, Commodore; Robert L. Feely, Treasurer; Ralph S. Millard, Secretary and the Chautauqua Lake Power Boat Club was born.

The club activities the season of 1944 were held at Midway Park through the generosity of the Park Management, who donated space in the pavilion for club use.

During the winter of 1944-45, the club took two major steps. The first step was the working out of details and incorporating the Club under the laws of New York State. The following were the incorporators and the first Board of Governors: Claude W. Larcombe, Robert L. Feely, Oalf G. Johnson, Ralph S. Millard, Edward J. Gaves, with the officers from the previous year being re-elected. The second step was the leasing of the present Club House and a major remodeling job to convert the building for club house purposes. This was completed in time for the 1945 season opening on Memorial Day.

The third major step was making a new kitchen and a porch in 1965. Our fourth major step was in 1968, when Commodore Morris Kintner attempt to and succeeded in removing the old wooden dock and replacing with our present all aluminum dock (a loan from the bank was acquired in order to complete this well needed project.)

In 1985, the boat club members remodeled and enclosed the front porch with louvered glass windows. This helped to keep the blowing, windy, rainy days away from the members. The brick sidewalk leading to be water was also completed in 1985. These two accomplishments were completed under the direction of Commodore Dick Jackson.

Our next major project was completed in 1987 while Ron Hicks was Commodore. This involved building a cathedral ceiling and complete the bar renovation with the help of other members.

Our next step was in 1991, under Rick Bloomquist’s direction, we painted the boat club, repaired the roof, and purchased a new utility shed. The winter of 1992, under the direction of Pat Charess, was kept busy by remodeling the Sitting Room—many members directed by Don Gustafson installed new sliding doors, windows, and a new heater to make leisure time more comfortable. John Foye saw to it in 1993 that a much talked about deck became a reality.

In 1994, Don Cornell gave the ladies solid footing while sitting on the throne. The new bathroom floor was very much appreciated. Under the following Commodores, the club has proposed and upheld it’s motto - “To Aid in the Preservation and Improvement of Chautauqua Lake.” Our 54th year was very enjoyable under the direction of Jim Andrews.

In 1998, under the direction of Don Cornell and Bill Shiling, the clubhouse was painted and a new soffit was installed.

In 1999, under the direction of Jeff Kester, a much needed electrical project was started.

In 2000, under the direction of Bill Shilling, we added new dock sections and increased the electric service to the boat slips and RV’s.

Much was accomplished in improvements to our facilities during the 2001 season. Under the direction of Commodore Jim Stevens, the deck was covered with Sunbrella enabling members to fully utilize it. Patio blocks were installed in the grill area. New grills were added and tied into a central propane tank. In addition, the men’s bathroom floor was repaired and the electrical service for the docks was completed.

In the 2002 season, Commodore Rick Couchenour improved and completed the dock lighting and water systems.

In 2003, under the direction of Commodore Dan Backus, new kitchen cabinets were installed and Dan refinished our furniture which was a welcome face lift and added additional functionality to our club.

In the early 2004 season, Commodore Hargis and many members undertook the building of a steel raft with an attached hydraulic boom, which has made life around the dock much easier. Also, under the direction of Jim Boland, many members chipped in to help install a new roof, which continues to make our lives “dry.”

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