South Venice Yacht Club is a social club that was formed in 1955 with a vision by a few people who started to play Bingo and earmarked the profits for the future club.
A brief history of the South Venice Yacht Club includes some of the local folklore.
The Venice Yacht Club was already in operation in 1955 and was known as the "Rich Man's Club." With tongue-in-cheek, our people applied for a charter to form the South Venice Yacht Club, known locally as the "Poor Man's Club." The charter was granted, and the club was incorporated on August 7, 1957.
The Inland Waterway was not yet on the west coast of Florida when the Club started. When digging eventually began in the Fort Myers area, interest in our club picked up. The hope at that time was to purchase land directly on the ICW, but that was not to be. By the time the canal digging was past South Venice, the Club had only accumulated $5,000.
The land where the clubhouse now stands was purchased for $5000 in 1966, which exhausted the treasury. In order to erect the building it was decided to sell 100 life memberships at $100 each. This raised $10,000 which built the north half of the clubhouse. The building was opened for the first time on New Year’s Eve, 1967.
In the period 1970-71, the size of the building was doubled and we purchased the land to the south which is now our parking lot.
Each succeeding administration made many improvements to the Club. At one point, it was found necessary to enlarge the galley and restroom areas. Lacking the necessary funds, it was decided to sell bonds to the Club members. These bonds were paid off in a few months. One major improvement outside the clubhouse was building the sea wall, which is now overgrown with mangroves.
Our club has forged ahead due to the hard work and dedication of so many, and today boasts a 4900 square foot clubhouse on 1.4 acres on Alligator Creek with direct access to the Intercoastal Waterway.
All of this was accomplished due to the dedicated volunteer effort by members over the years, (God Bless Them All) and the "Even Keels"; the Ladies of the Yacht Club.
Today, the South Venice Yacht Club is "yachtless" but not short on fun and friendship and has recently created a launching area for kayaks along with a 24 capacity kayak rack.