I recently read an online forum post by a fellow Elk member proclaiming the ultimate demise of our benevolent society due to our lack of embracing change at the national level. He points out the loss of members after our order was legally forced to accept ethnicity’s other than white males and then the subsequent loss of members after our order was legally forced to accept the opposite gender of the then all male organization. He goes on to state that the lack of this forced lodge level diversity at the national level is the reason for this decline and the ongoing closing of lodges we are seeing around the country.
Though I won’t attempt to discredit or validate the conclusion of our fellow member because I know those facts are real I will postulate another conclusion. One that is certainly more complex and less solid in its conclusion but also one that I feel may reflect more accurately the forces and energies that have affected our complex and dynamic organization.
The conclusion of our Elks Creed states that Elks “Enjoy the good things of earth, keep within thee the glorious sunshine of youth and remain always of good cheer.” This is the conclusion of our Elks Creed – enjoy what life has to offer, act like a kid some times and heck, lets always have a good time. This is the foundation of why our founders got together on Sundays and formed a private club – to have a good time on their day off – lift a few pints, tilt a few flasks and generally act like a kid. Giving them a release from their work weeks and few moments to revel with fellow like-minded individuals and not think about the stresses of daily life. Continue Reading
So I just read two articles, ones that made me stop and think – postulate on an idea that’s been reoccurring in my head off and on over the past few years.
The articles are:
Why Won’t Millennials Join Country Clubs? Written by Kelsey Lawrence July 2, 2018 and found online at Citylab.com (https://www.citylab.com/life/2018/07/will-millennials-kill-the-country-club/563186/)
Breaking Faith. The culture war over religious morality has faded; in its place is something much worse. Written by Peter Beinart for the April 2017 Issue of The Atlantic (https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/04/breaking-faith/517785/)
Lawrence argues that Millennials won’t join country clubs due to things like price (it costs a lot) but Lawrence goes on to say that “many young people are put off by the image of the country club—stuffy and formal, with old-fashioned dress codes and rules about cell-phone use. Not to mention the rich history of racial and religious discrimination that accompanies many such organizations.” In her article she quotes Larry Hirsch, president of Golf Property Analysts, who says “[Country clubs] are not doing a good job of welcoming Millennials, minorities and moms—the three M’s.”
Lawrence quotes Jeff Morgan, CEO of the Club Managers Association of America, who concedes there’s an image problem at play. “In the past, the model for a country club has been very golf-centric and largely male-centric.” An image problem centered on one homogeneous group.
Interesting isn’t that – these are very similar items and issues that the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks has been dealing with. People being put off by the Elks image of old drunk men hanging out in smoky rooms complaining when people come in wearing a hat, etc…
Hood River, Oregon
The Set –
Straight outa Wikipedia – Hood River is considered a “sports mecca” and offers some of the best spots for windsurfing, kitesurfing, Moore 24 Racing, kayaking, stand up paddle boarding, skiing and mountain biking—all for which it draws considerable national attention from many media outlets, such as Sail Magazine, Pressure Drop and Sailing Anarchy.
Moore 24 Nationals in Hood River, Oregon, one of the most consistently windy places to sail in our country and if half of what is written above is true one of the most fun and active towns you can imagine. A sailing venue I always think of with a little trepidation in the weeks before – why are going here – man that’s a hassle to get down there – it’ll be too hot and too windy – things are going to break – we are going to wipe out. You know, all the normal stuff to be worried about. We’re going somewhere to race that the Opti’s don’t sail at, where the only keel boats to have a one design regatta at the venue is the Moore 24’s and where the sailboards and kiteboards shine and rip around in places with names like Swell City – but then you get there and take in the scenery as you are welcomed in and get to welcome in all the different players in the theatre that is a Moore 24 Regatta. The Sailing is always great, the wind is usually incredible and the sailors in the fleet are top notch, but it’s the players, the actors in this regatta that make it what it is. Continue Reading
Holy bejeezus that was good times! My affinity for the little old Moore 24 is no secret and her infamous beginnings not with standing she’s proven to be a boat that brings together some serious fun loving people. I mean seriously, who would have thunk that a sailor that ruined a good mold burning party by stealing the mold would end up making modifications to this remarkable boat that turned it into an unparalleled inshore and offshore platform that over 40 years later is still capable of taking a serious beating for 3 straight days while bringing together sailors that are more like family than on course rivals.
Anyway, I digress… We had the privilege of competing in the 41st Moore 24 Nationals August 25th thru the 27th and what a Nationals it was! Hosted by one of our favorite California yacht clubs, Richmond Yacht Club, it was certainly one for the record books. Arguably not one of the best attended Nationals in history with 16 boats but certainly memorable and super challenging for everyone that made it out.
Affectionately christened the Six Pack Series back in the 80’s Monday night racing off Shilshole Marina has evolved through a partnership between the Sloop Tavern Yacht Club and the Shilshole Bay Yacht Club into a solely Sloop Tavern Yacht Club event and participation continues to climb.
Often described by some as the salt water bumper boat racing akin to Duck Dodge or that silly fixed mark racing the yacht club down the road does – STYC’s Monday night racing continues to evolve and grow and has certainly outpaced and moved beyond the oft heard negative comments. With 64 entries in the 5 race evening Ballard Cup Series #1 the Sloop easily doubles the entries of the [considered by some] more serious keel boat buoy racing, offered by Corinthian Yacht Club of Seattle, mid-week off the same marina.***
Ahh Winter Vashon – lovingly sitting at the forefront of sailors minds as they think longingly all year long about this balmy jaunt around the last stronghold of hippiedom in the Pacific Northwest, Vashon Island. At Just over 30 miles, it’s an easy 6 hour sail with those consistent south sound winds the area is known for and with our 8 hours of light this time of year finishing in daylight is even a possibility! Right? Well it was this year!
11 Moore 24’s made it out for a regatta in Seattle and I got to be one of them! We had a hell of a time, a good amount of tomfoolery, a large dose of Yee Haws and some great comradery and laughter. But the experience got me to thinking about the people, the boat and the class that has kept this boat not only viable but downright fun to sail and race over 40 years after the concept first hit the water – it’s time for a public service message.
Moore 24 sailors have a bunch of hairball stories of taking these boats offshore, out in big breeze venues and planning across finish lines in front of much bigger, faster and more expensive boats. Most look to be sane and normal sailors, but I know the truth and you should too – before it is too late.