The tides, currents, and eddies in Castine Harbor challenged mariners long before and after the British naval victory here in 1779. Native Americans in birch bark canoes paddled through for thousands of years. Trade and transportation via packets, schooners, ships, and steamers then occupied the harbor for 300 years.
By the early twentieth century recreational sailing had arrived along with visitors and summer residents. In 1958 the Castine Yacht Club, a program of the Castine Golf Club, began in a second-floor room in the Acadia Wharf building (now gone). Seven years later the “old Custom pier” and property at the bottom of Dyer Lane were donated in support of the club’s effort to house its growing youth sailing classes. The innovative yacht club building was designed by a long-time summer resident and built with donations from over 1300 individuals.
Generations of Castine’s young have learned the fine art of sailing in the club’s fleet of small sail-training boats called Turnabouts and Optimists. Some graduates of the sailing program have gone on to compete in college and beyond. For visiting yachtsmen, the Yacht Club has three guest moorings and showers.
For more information, please visit the Castine Yacht Club website: https://www.castineyachtclub.org/