Vermilion Yacht Club

The mouth of the Vermilion River used to be a low-lying swamp area, but in 1928, Lou Wells of LA Wells Construction purchased a portion of the area and invested his time and money to develop the land into a residential community with a spot dedicated for a future yacht club. By the early 1930s, Wells dredged lagoons and built three houses on the land, this was the beginning of the Vermilion Lagoons.. Wells then approached the Cleveland Yacht Club to relocate their headquarters to Vermilion while sorting out a deal with their current land owner in Rocky River. With a vote of 16 to 15, CYC rejected Wells’ proposal and remained in Rocky River. Adamant on a club existing at the lagoon, Lou returned to CYC speaking to individual members to venture away and form a new club. This idea stuck in the ear of a dozen former CYC members, and on January 19, 1933 at the office of  W.P. Hurford on West 9th Street, Cleveland, the Vermilion Yacht Club was formed. 

The first order of business was to draft plans for a new clubhouse and additional waterfront property for dockage. Emory Rhodes drew up the plans and a contract was negotiated with Rasmus Hanson of Cleveland for the construction. The total cost of the clubhouse was $3,000 (about $70,000 dollars in today’s economy). The original clubhouse, just a short trip up the Vermilion River from the Vermilion Boat Club, still remains as the home of VYC and its membership continues to thrive.  

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