General Information About Membership

After you have read the information on this page, click here to find the application and sponsorship forms.

Portland Yacht Club has five categories of Membership.  Here is a brief summary. Details and requirements are set forth in the Club By-Laws.

Boating:  limited to 300.  Has use of all Club facilities.  Eligible serve on the Board.

Intermediate:  for applicants 21 to 30 years old.  Has use of all Club facilities.

The Club has established a special lower dues schedule with the aim of making it easier financially for young adults to get started as members.  In addition, a portion of each year’s dues will be credited against the Club initiation fee.  That fee need not be paid in full until the member graduates to Boating membership at 31.

Senior:  Must be 55 or over AND have been a Boating member for 15 years or more.  (Thus, no one can join the Club as a Senior member.)  May not keep a boat in the Falmouth anchorage.  Does not have use of the floats and launch except as a visiting yacht, a guest of a Boating member, or as part of a Club activity.

Emeritus:  Individuals who, after resignation, are recognized by the Club for great service to the Club. Same privileges as Senior members.

Honorary:  Recognition of major leaders and individuals who have greatly advanced the cause of boating. Must be renewed annually.  Same privileges as Senior members.

People may join the Club as individuals or as joint members.  A joint member consists of a couple who are in a legally-recognized relationship.  Joint members pay the same dues and fees as individual members; they have one vote at meetings.

The Club welcomes members from both sexes, all races, ethnic backgrounds, religious affiliation, and sexual orientation.

Membership Application and Acceptance Policies

The Portland Yacht Club welcomes applications for Boating or Intermediate membership at any time.  This is a summary of policies and procedures; for complete details, contact the Club.  Forms will be found on the next page.

An application must be complete before any action can be taken.  “Complete” means all the information on the Application Form, two Sponsor Forms (from current members in good standing or a Flag Officer from another Yacht Club of which the applicant has been member within the last two years), and a non-refundable $100.00 application fee.

Once an application is complete, the Membership Committee reviews the information.  At its option, the Committee may conduct a criminal background check and/or a credit check.

If the Committee approves, the next step is to send the name(s) to the membership for comment.  (This is not a “veto” process; it is another source of information.)  Comments are evaluated, then approval is either confirmed or withdrawn.

The Committee then makes a recommendation to the Board of Directors.  Following the Board’s decision, the Committee notifies the applicant about acceptance.

Acceptance is not the same as admission.  Boating membership is limited to 300; applicants are admitted only when openings occur.  (There is no limit on Intermediate members.)

Accepted applications are assigned to one of the following waiting lists:

  • The Automatic List includes a current member returning from an approved temporary leave; an Intermediate member who must transition to Boating membership at age 30; a Senior or Emeritus member who wishes to return to Boating member status; and a partner in a former joint membership now dissolved.
  • The Preferred List includes re-applying former Club members; children, siblings, or parents of current members; and applicants who previously deferred membership (see below).
  • The Affiliated List includes individuals who participated at least two full seasons in the PYC Junior Sailing Program or who were satisfactorily employed at the Club for at least two seasons.
  • The Boating list includes those who own or plan to own a vessel by the time of admission.
  • The General List.

As openings occur, those on the Automatic List are admitted first.  If openings remain, one applicant will be admitted from the Preferred List, followed by one from the Affiliated List, then two from the Boating List.  The order of selection from each list will be determined by the date the application is complete.  Only when the first three Lists are exhausted will applicants on the General List be admitted, with the order determined by the date the application is complete.  When additional openings occur, the cycle will repeat.

Once offered admission, an applicant has 15 days to accept, decline, or defer.  If the applicant accepts, he/she will be billed for annual dues, initiation fee, and any assessment previously billed to members and payable in whole or in part during the current year.  50% of the total is due within 30 days or February 1, whichever is later; the balance is due by April 1 or 90 days after notification of admission, whichever is later.  All payments are non-refundable. (Note:  Intermediate applicants have a different schedule of payments, including the ability to spread the Initiation Fee over more than one year.)

An applicant who has been offered admission may defer admission for one year.  At the end of that period he/she becomes part of the Preferred List.  Deferral is not permitted a second time.  If a deferred applicant does not join the next year, he/she loses approval.  If he/she wishes later to join, he/she must re-apply and pay the application fee.

The Membership Committee reserves the right to recommend to the Board of Directors exceptions to the admissions policy that it feels are in the best interest of the Club and its membership.

The Waiting List

The number of individuals admitted from the Waiting List each year depends on how many resignations from Boating Membership and transfers to Senior Membership we have each year.  These changes usually occur between December and March (the period in which dues are billed, and people consider their membership status).

The sooner an application is submitted, the earlier admission will occur.  Based on recent experience, however, those applying this year will have a slight chance of being admitted next year and a much better chance of admission in the second year out.

Benefits of Being on the Waiting List

Those on the waiting list receive the member discount when signing children up for the Junior Sailing Program.  They also receive our weekly e-letter, to keep them current on what is happening at the Club.  We also invite members-in-waiting to some Club events.

Click here to find the application and sponsorship forms.