ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS, NJ – An Open House celebration and cocktail party will be featured at the Atlantic Highlands Yacht Club on Sunday, May 5 from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Yacht Club, upstairs over the Shore Casino in the Atlantic Highlands Yacht Harbor.

“We welcome anyone not familiar with our very active club to stop in, meet members and learn the varied of activities we sponsor, both for enjoyment and for community service and assistance,” said Helen Marchetti, former mayor of the borough and Membership Chairman of the Yacht Club.. The afternoon event will be catered by Brennan’s of Rumson.

The chairman said the annual event is held not only to introduce boaters, sailors, and all aficionados of the water to the variety of both memberships and programs offered on a regular basis, but also to see first-hand the role the Yacht club members play in their communities.

“You don’t have to be a boater, own a sailboat, or be an avid racer in order to enjoy all the yacht club has to offer,” explained Elaine Hayden, one of the committee members,“We have a variety of membership categories to meet every need including a Provisio   nal Membership for those who want to join for a year to learn more in depth everything that is offered.”

Founded in 1953, the mission of the Club has always been to attract and bring together dedicated individuals who share a mutual respect for the sea,  as well as to encourage and advance all aspects of boating, yacht racing, and on-water activities, Included in the mission is the club’s program of offering a welcome and safe haven to yachtsmen and yachtswoman visiting from other parts of the country or the world.

Because of its location within the Atlantic Highlands Municipal Yacht Harbor, regarded as one of the finest and most beautiful in the nation, the Yacht Club enjoys a reputation as a convenient and popular stopover for boaters cruising or in transit, because of its proximity to Sandy Hook and New York Harbor.

The Yacht Harbor is located within walking distance of unique shops, including marine supplies and repair shops, a plethora of restaurants ranging from seafood to a variety of ethnic choices, laundry, post office, library, churches, liquor stores, a supermarket, and historic and other recreational entertainment, including both movie and live theater. Its location on the second floor offers unparalleled views across the Bay to New York and the open sea. The Harbor itself offers extensive facilities, transient docks, lifts, pump out stations, a launching ramp, tennis courts and a recreation area for children, in addition to docks for high speed ferry service to Wall Street or Mid-town Manhattan.

“It’s no wonder we are internationally known for our excellence and hospitality,” said Marchetti, who also served more than 20 years on the municipal Harbor Commission.

In addition to Hayden, the membership committee includes Ron Ledder, Sue Mikaitis, Ray Hillers and Robin Zager.  Commodore Jeff McDaniel is the club Commodore, with Jack Glass, Vice Commodore and Christopher Stone, Rear Commodore.

The Yacht Club offers unique programs for both sailors and motor boaters, in addition  to supporting local charities and programs with fund raising events and specialized activities. These include a Special Olympics Sailing Program, started in the 1990s by former Commodore L. Hanko Rosenblad, a highly popular  series of sailing lessons offered to adults with special needs over several weeks every summer.

This year, under Yacht Club member Chuck Parker the club is also instituting a similar educational program for disabledveterans . There are also junior and student sail programs and memberships, as well as AHSEPT sail programs, a matchless program the Yacht Club conducts in conjunction with the Borough.

“We enjoy a close relationship with the borough and all the local businesses,” said Marchetti In addition to herself, other municipal leaders who have served in leadership positions in the Yacht Club include the late former Mayor Everett Curry. The first chairman in 1953 was the late Henry Stalder.

The Yacht Club is sponsoring a Ms Race Yard Sale to Benefit 180 Turning Lives Around on May 18, and a shake down cruise for boaters to Great Kills on June 8.  

  For further information about the Yacht Club or the May 5 Open House, visit www.AHYC.net.