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99155 Sea View Dr

Mecca, CA 92254

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The north shore beach and yacht club located in the historical Salton Sea area of Southern California is a local meeting,recreation and club of sorts that looks out onto the Salton Sea. The North Shore Beach and Yacht Club is an Albert Frey-designed building in North Shore, California. It opened in 1959 as part of a $2 million development along the northeastern shore of the Salton Sea which would become California's largest marina. The property was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2015. Ever-increasing salinity from agricultural runoff from both the Coachella Valley and Imperial County combined with fluctuating water levels culminated in a major flood in 1981, destroying the club's jetty and making it impossible for boats to dock at the club; it would be completely closed by 1984. However the club remained in use by the community into the early 1990s. Its an intersting place to see when visiting the salton sea.

north shore beach and yacht club

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Never having even seen the Salton Sea in So Cal I must say we were pleasantly surprised by the lack of people, the beautiful weather and gorgeous views of the sea. We drove down the east side on 111 and enjoyed the large variety of shore birds including the white pelicans.

north shore beach and yacht club

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North Shore Beach and Yacht Club

Salton sea, calif..

Designed by Swiss-born Modernist architect Albert Frey,* the Yacht Club is an architectural gem sitting in a pretty desolate location, the northeastern shore of the Salton Sea, across Highway 111 and the Southern Pacific tracks from the unincorporated community of North Shore. Built in 1959, the marina was used to dock boats, in an era when the Sea had more visitors per year than Yosemite.

north shore beach and yacht club

With the jetty long gone and the Yacht Club abandoned and vandalized, in 2009, Riverside County restored the building. For about a year the Salton Sea Museum operated from the building, with over 7000 visitors signing in. Sadly the museum closed, and the facility is now primarily used as a community center by Desert Recreational District. BUT at least it is being used and maintained!

Now the “new” problem is the dropping Sea water level, leaving the inlet to the marina cut off from the Sea. Last month the Coachella Valley Mountains Conservancy** voted to approve a grant, which along with funds from the Bureau of Reclamation and the California Natural Resources Agency, would enable the Salton Sea Authority to rehabilitate the inlet and marina. If you go to Google Maps satellite image of the area, you can see a tiny, compromised inlet from the Sea to the marina. However, last Sunday I went down to take photos and stood “in the inlet,” on dry beach to take the photo below.

north shore beach and yacht club

Last Spring Desert X https://www.desertx.org/ brought more visitors to the area to see the outdoor art installations around the Coachella Valley, including the Salton Sea. It reminds me a little of Marfa Texas, in that a gem of art, is sitting in an out of the way location.

north shore beach and yacht club

Next week the Salton Sea Summit will convene at UCR Palm Desert campus; let us hope this will bring needed attention and solutions.

*Albert Frey’s architecture is Desert Modernism, centered on Palm Springs; his work includes the Palm Springs Tramway Valley Station and the Tramway Gas Station, now used an a Visitor’s Center on the entry into the City, as well as City Hall, etc.

** I am the State Senate appointee and current Chairwoman http://cvmc.ca.gov/

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I grew up in the Coachella Valley; my parents were "heavy earthwork" contractors, mostly building government projects, so I spent a lot of time on the back roads of the West. I'm a graduate of Vassar College (history major) and the Marshall-Wythe School of Law at the College of William & Mary. Retired from the Law, I now grow dates, sweet limes & figs on the family ranch, and am the State Senate appointee to the Coachella Valley Mountains Conservancy. View all posts by History Trover

9 thoughts on “ North Shore Beach and Yacht Club ”

In the late 1960s, when the weather was nice, my grandfather would drive to Salton Sea with my grandmother and I.

Grandma would “bird”, Grandpa would take pictures and I would play in the mud.

We would then have a picnic lunch and a few hours later, head home.

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What wonderful memories!

A few random thoughts: 1. Who provided this site with the postcard alleging it as an authentic 1959 card? 2. Even as late as ’59, photoshop, cut & paste technology could not have produced the wildly imaginative backdrop as shown in the photo this site shows. 3. Although the Tilapia, Croaker and Corvina are long gone, there’s some thing rather ‘fishy’ about the card as it is represented.

The postcard was handed out at the reopening of the Yacht Club building in 2010. The Salton Sea Museum distributed it as a reprint with no copyright notice (see caption above). The lady who was the “guiding light” behind the Museum/Historical Society passed away a few years ago, and I have no idea how one could find out her source.

Since the water level in the Sea has dropped so much, I have no way of getting on a boat and seeing what the background, seen from that height, would show today; however, I agree that showing that much of the sand hills in the background is improbable. It wouldn’t be the first advertising postcard that exaggerated a scene.

The purpose of my post was two fold: to show the tremendous drop in the Sea level, making the entrance to the yacht club basin inaccessible; and to show the building before the vandalism (I do think the colors in the card are rather lurid, but that may be due to color film aging).

I am from the southern end of the Salton Sea in the Imperial Valley. The IID (Imperial Irrigation District) has been fighting to save the sea, but it faces so many obstacles. There are several Western states, local governments, bureaucratic agencies, water districts, and Mexico that have a legal claim on water from the Colorado River.

The Boulder Canyon Project (1928) established water rights for water districts throughout Southern California, but the IID claims it was granted superior rights by the Colorado River Compact of 1922. Most of the water (97%) apportioned by the IID is transferred to Imperial Valley farmers.

Under the Quantification Settlement Agreement (QSA) of 2003, the IID agreed to a 50-year transfer of water to San Diego County with the understanding that the State of California would commit to saving the Salton Sea.

Why is this important?

The sea depends on agricultural runoff to maintain its water level. The runoff is channeled through the New River basin. One of the effects of the QSA is that the IID has paid farmers to not grow crops. In order to sell Valley residents on the transfer of water to San Diego, the IID said that it would not result in water restrictions.

That was a lie which I predicted 17 years ago. When you drive through the Valley today, you’ll be struck by all the dead trees, lawns and landscaping. In the ensuing years there have been shortages of winter produce because farmers are being paid not to farm.

Now the IID is telling farmers it is going to reduce, or eliminate the subsidy to fallow their land. The ag community is up in arms.

One other issue that is being ignored is that the New River (which flows across the border from Mexico) is North America’s most heavily polluted body of water. It contains every known contaminant, toxin, pathogen, virus and bacterium … and it discahrges into the Salton Sea!

And what is the State of California doing, or the Federal government for that matter? Nothing, if you ask the residents of Imperial County. Mexico, seemingly, is permitted to violate the International Boundary and Water Commission.

Our state senator said that we cannot expect that the Salton Sea will ever be restored to its glory days when it was known as Palm Springs South; and there is an opinion in Congress that the Salton Sea was a freak accident, and not worth being saved.

Solutions have been offered like creating evaporation ponds where the water is essentially desalinated. The agricultural runoff that feeds the sea is also the source of the concentrated salt that is leeched from the soil. Those concentrations are responsible for killing millions of fish and birds.

It’s a two-edged sword. The sea needs the water, but not the salt. A transfusion of water either from the Colorado River, or Mexico’s Sea of Cortez. might be the solution. The IID, as a result of QSA, doesn’t have the water to spare so the Colorado is a non-starter.

I have suggested that Mexico permit the United States to transfer water from the Sea of Cortez in exchange for the cleanup of the New River. Mexico cannot afford to treat the water flowing across the border so my proposal would be that the U.S. pay for a treatment facility in exchange for the transfer of water.

Alternately, Utah’s Great Salt Lake and California’s Mono Lake.might be viable solutions.

State and Federal officials have agreed that the Salton Sea is in “dire straits”. It is an environmental catastrophe. Migratory birds along the Pacific Flyway depend on this most essential rest stop. In addition, the dry lake bed has contributed to a massive dust cloud that envelopes the county. Many kids, myself included, are literally born with asthma. In California, the largest number of emergency room visits by asthmatic children is in the Imperial Valley.

The air is not fit to breathe. Homeowners’ lawns have turned to dust so it’s not even healthy to play in the front yard.

The transfusion of water could cost $50 billion. Do we have the will (and the money) to save the sea? At least for the sake of the children’s health, and the conservation of wildlife.

Thank you for a great summary. The 1922 Compact allocation was based on the data then available, but those readings were from the wettest years for centuries. The situation on the River is exacerbated by many factors, but the main factors are; the other 6 states have developed in the last 98 years and now are demanding their share of the allocations; years of drought have taken their toll; and, as David points out, the transfer to San Diego was confirmed based on promises that California would adopt a Salton Sea plan and take action.

My dad (who built major water projects for the Bureau of Reclamation, etc.) told me many years ago that water would end up being transferred from agricultural areas to cities because cities have more votes in DC.

The economic and health consequences are major issues; the Imperial Valley & lower Coachella Valley have many residents who are economically disadvantaged. Add to that, even the County Clubs residents of the upper CV should be concerned that their property values can plummet, due to the smells, dust, and water challenges to the golf courses and landscaping.

Keeping this issue before the public seems to be the only way to convince Washington & Sacramento to take action.

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Some readers may not be aware that saving the Salton Sea was a passion of Rep. Sonny Bono. The southern end of the sea in the Imperial Valley was designated the Sonny Bono Salton Sea National Wildlife Refuge in 1998. This is not a new issue, but still unresolved after so many years. The biggest hurdle is that there are so many competing interests. Drought conditions only magnify the problem as maintaining the water level at Lake Mead has become the priority. Western distribution of water from the Colorado River depends on a healthy Lake Mead.

California’s 2020 budget includes funding for AB 617 (Community Air Protection Program) sponsored by the Imperial Valley and Eastern Coachella Valley. The New River Improvement Project and the North Lake Project, part of the Salton Sea Management Plan, will receive $47 million for habitat and air quality improvement. These are basically remediation projects — not restoration.

We can hope that these project actually receive funding. There really is no plan for restoration, only mitigation.

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North Shore Yacht Club fights to stay a community hub

Boats docked in front of North Shore Yacht Club at the Salton Sea.

The Salton Sea of the 1950s and 1960s has taken on the quality of a fairy tale. Locals who remember those years describe the sea as a bustling weekend oasis, where people raced boats, caught fish and picnicked on the beach.

But after a flood destroyed boat launches and the shores began to recede, many of those visitors abandoned the sea. Tilapia began to die. In the summer, the sea took on its now-famous sulfur smell.

The North Shore Beach and Yacht Club, built to plans by Modernist architect Albert Frey in 1959, is a relic from the Salton Sea’s recreational glory days. The two-story, 6,500-square-foot club now sits far from the water, and some of its boat launches have become dry land. But it remains a community gathering place — and some in the community are fighting to make sure it stays that way.

Linda Beal grew up fishing, boating and swimming in the Salton Sea. The Indio native, now a local historian, still fishes for tilapia on the sea regularly. She remembers eating lunch at Frey's yacht club and staring out at the sea.

“My dad would say that the yacht club was a window on the sea. You can just see everything right there. It draws people there,” Beal said. "They had members, in the early days, when the Beach Boys and the Marx Brothers and Desi (Arnaz) and Lucy (Ball).... The view is just absolutely gorgeous."

But floods in the late 1970s demolished motels on the shore and docks in the water. The shores began to recede in earnest, rendering boat launches useless.

“The Sea went down, so there was no place to launch (boats), and people just sort of walked away,” Beal said. She came back in the 1980s with a sailboat, she said, and was always alone on the water.

Decades passed before Riverside County officials approved a $3.35 million redevelopment project for the North Shore Yacht Club in 2009. Jeannie Kelly, proprietor of the Salton Sea History Museum and a friend of Beal's, undertook the restoration.

"It was in horrible condition, all of the graffiti and bird crap in it, it was just destroyed,” Beal said. “You would have wondered how on earth it could ever be brought back. But (Kelly) researched and brought back the colors, the corrugated fiberglass the way it was, even the floor tile… It was a marvel.”

Kelly's Salton Sea History Museum filled the yacht club for a year, then moved to the Torres-Martinez Desert Cahuilla Indians Wetlands property after a dispute with the county over its nonprofit status. Now, its contents sit in boxes in a North Shore house.

Director struggles to reopen Salton Sea History Museum

Kelly died in 2015, but her restoration work remains. The North Shore Beach and Yacht Club is owned by Riverside County and managed by the Desert Recreation District. It hosts Zumba classes, after-school daycare and displays of art by local students, according to DRD public information officer Noelle Furon.

Catholic Charities also uses the building to distribute food, Furon said. Other agencies have used it over the years intermittently as a mobile library and pop-up health clinic.

This spring, the publicly funded DRD plans to open a fitness center with weights and exercise machines in the building.

“We really are trying to integrate the community with the community center and have them have a hand in it,” Furon said. “We try to reach out and see, what would (the community) like this area to be used for? This time, it was that they wanted a workout space.”

North Shore, the township nearest to the yacht club, was home to about 3,500 people, according to the 2010 U.S. Census. Nearby Mecca had about 8,600 people. In Furon’s words, “it’s not a huge community, you’re not going to get Planet Fitness opening there” — but she hopes the public facility can help.

And a handful of other groups are trying to promote the yacht club and its environs. Last fall, nonprofits from L.A. and North Shore teamed up for Projections , a community arts festival featuring images projected onto abandoned buildings along Highway 111.

"If you tell someone you've been to North Shore, they say 'Oh those abandoned buildings.' But the people who live here have so many ideas for what these buildings can be," Evelyn Serrano, an artistic director with L.A. nonprofit Kounkuey, told The Desert Sun during that event.

Beginning on Feb. 12, a nonprofit called Seathletes will host a three-day gathering for boaters called North Shore Xtreme .

The organizers expect around 300 athletes to compete in outrigger (a certain type of rowing) and stand-up paddle races on the water. Boats for both sports are thin enough that they can float on the shallow sea; Seathletes executive director Davy Aker emphasized that state officials have deemed the sea safe for boating and fishing.

Get your own copy of the North Shore Yacht Club drawing here. Color it in and share it with #TDSColorsMod.

Aker said the weekend's schedule will include presentations by the Torres Martinez Desert Cahuilla Indians and a panel on the future of the Salton Sea, along with camping, daily hikes and yoga. They'll also display art inside the yacht club, on view for people attending a Modernism Week tour.

Seathletes has also partnered with the Desert Recreation District to start an outrigging club for local kids, Kai Wai .

"Everybody wants people recreating and feeling pride in their town, but there's no program to get people out on the water," Aker said. "We're just trying to shine a light on a dark space and change the narrative."

For locals, though, this isn't a "dark space" — it's home. And while people in North Shore live near the sea, resident Lucio Vasquez said it's hardly the center of their community. Highway 111 cuts between the shores and most of the town.

"It's an awesome building and a beautiful building, it's about the nicest building in this area," said Vasquez, who serves on the Mecca-North Shore Community Council. "In my opinion, it's just not being used to the extent that it can, and the reason is because where the yacht club is is not central to the community."

To send kids to after-school programs there, for instance, parents have to drop them off and pick them up. Vasquez said he'd never let his kids bike along Highway 111.

"A real community center would have a lot more use if it was more central to the community," he added.

But right now, North Shore lacks community space. The unincorporated town only has a small park, Vasquez said; neighboring Mecca has a Boys & Girls Club and a public library.

Furon of the Desert Recreation District emphasized that their programs exist to serve the community, and they try to meet whatever needs people express. The yacht club provides space for quinceneras, birthday parties and community meetings that just doesn't exist elsewhere. With the addition of a gym and regular rowing activity, local leaders think it will continue to be a versatile community place.

And Salton Sea-focused advocates say that it's not just that people need the sea — it's that the sea needs them.

"If we had proper places to launch (boats), and people could go out and have fun on the water again... it's just a beautiful place to be," Beal said. "There's so much interest, people want to go down there, young people are interested in the sea. We need the minds of the young people to come up with the solutions."

MORE MODERNISM: Get all The Desert Sun's Modernism Week coverage

Rosalie Murphy covers real estate and business at The Desert Sun. Reach her at [email protected] or on Twitter @rozmurph.

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Greetings from the Salton Sea

North Shore Beach & Yacht Club

The North Shore Beach and Yacht Club was built in 1960 by developers Ray Ryan and Trav Rogers for $2 million. Designed in a nautical theme by renowned mid-century architect, Albert Frey, the complex boasted one of the largest marinas in Southern California.  An adjacent motel was built with additional plans for the North Shore Beach Estates, a planned housing development that never materialized. The Beach Boys, Jerry Lewis, and Marx Brothers all visited the club or kept boats at the marina. The complex marketed as the “The Glamour Capital of the Salton Sea” hosted boat races, parties, and other popular events. Ryan, an oil millionaire with reputed mob connections and a taste for gambling was killed in a mysterious car bombing in 1977.

During the early 1980s, flooding from excessive agricultural wastewater discharges from Imperial Valley farms in conjunction with higher-than-normal seasonal storm runoff began to inundate the marina and surrounding property.  One such flood in 1981 destroyed the marina’s jetty making it impossible to dock boats. Eventually the facility was closed by 1984 leaving it to vandals and skate boarders that frequented the club’s pool.

In July 2009, Riverside County supervisors approved the use of a $3.35 million grant to rehabilitate and redevelop the property. Restoration of Frey’s yacht club building was completed in 2010 and reopened as a community center and museum for the Salton Sea. The museum’s tenure at this prime location was short-lived however; Riverside County officials decided not to renew the operational arrangement with the museum staff and it was moved to a new location in Mecca, which has since closed. The museum staff is currently looking for another location. For more information, visit: http://saltonseamuseum.org/ .

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POI: North Shore Beach & Yacht Club

Be sure to visit the beautifully restored yacht club building off Highway 111 at North Shore.

North Shore Estates

View of the planned North Shore Estates, North Shore, CA. Click for larger image.

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North Shore Yacht Club, Inc.

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Greetings and Best Wishes to all from the North Shore Yacht Club (NSYC)! In commission for 155 years for people who love to sail whether with, or without, a boat. Our Cruising, Racing, Junior Sailing, Boat Share, Social and Education programs are real successes at a fraction of the cost of other yacht clubs. Its fleet consists almost exclusively of sailboats, ranging from small one-designs to ocean-going vessels. We boast a diverse membership that includes experienced cruisers, blue water racers, and new sailors. The Club offers moorings protected by land on three sides with superb launch service, with quick and easy access to the Sound. We monitor VHF Radio on channel 78 Just click our website links, email, or call us, and let us share how we approach, “Something for All” with 154 years of experience and remaining, “NSYC Strong.” . Happy Sailing!

  • all ages. love sailing
  • Cruising, Racing, Junior Sailing, Boat Sharing, Yacht Club experience
  • Safe Moorings. Superb Launch service
  • Social and Education Programs. Friendliest members
  • Attractive Clubhouse. Spectacular views! Affordable!

NSYC Burgee

LIE to Exit 36 North on Searingtown Rd onto Port Washington Blvd Left on Main St Right onto Shore Rd Left 2nd light onto Manorhaven Blvd Left on Orchard Beach Rd Veers to right. Between 2 marinas

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NORTH​ SHORE

  contact us   [email protected] [email protected] [email protected] [email protected] clubhouse voicemail box 631-744-2830  , beach advisory map, join us for our 96th year.

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Rocky Point's Year Round Beach

Enjoy year-round parties and social events at our historic clubhouse hosted by North Shore Beach or throw your own. Special rental discount for all members.

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Our members catch'em big at North Shore Beach with some of the best cast fishing on Long Island. Bring your beach pass, parking permit, rod & have fun!

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Our members enjoy kayak storage right on the beach, just bring your paddle and come down to the beach for exercise or a relaxing ride around the sound.

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Beach Parties

As a member, you and your guests are invited to parties with music and food cooked right on the beach. You can even throw your own beach blast!

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© 2020 by North Shore Beach Property Owners Association

North Shore Yacht Club Logo

Greetings and Best Wishes to all from the North Shore Yacht Club (NSYC)! Established in 1871 as the New York Canoe Club we’ve been in commission for 154 years and are the oldest yacht club on Long Island!

The NSYC is for people of all ages who love to sail, whether with, or without, a boat. Its fleet consists almost exclusively of sailboats, ranging from small one-designs to ocean-going vessels. We boast a diverse membership of all ages that includes experienced cruisers, blue water racers, and new sailors.

The Club offers a well-sheltered mooring area protected by land on three sides, with quick and easy access to Long Island. Membership fees are a fraction of  cost of other yacht clubs and marinas.  Our Cruising, Racing, Boat Share  , Junior Sailing Camp Program , Social and Education programs are real successes!

Please click any link here, below, or in this website. Or just email, or call us, and let us share how we approach, “Something for All” with 154 years of experience and remaining, “NSYC Strong.”  Meanwhile, click here for a brief  Video introduction to NSYC .

And, of course, we monitor our Club VHF Radio on channel 78!

Inquiries & Membership

Membership Inquiries: Mary Lu Dempsey — 516-767-1760 Club Steward Captain: Vic Geryk — 516-883-9823 or click here to contact us !

A man jumps into Lake Michigan with the Chicago skyline behind him

The Chicago heat is no joke this year. Here are some tried and true ways to stay cool in the city — and the suburbs — this summer.

Tyler Pasciak LaRiviere/Sun-Times

Hot? Here's a guide to how to cool off in the water, from public and private pools to water parks to paddle board rentals

These are the best ways to stay cool right now without spending too much or going too far..

There really is nothing like summertime, but now the temperatures are here and you may find yourself looking for some respite. One tried-and-true way to stay cool through this heat wave is diving into the water, from jumping in the lake to learning a new skill such as sailing or paddleboarding.

Here are eight ways to soak up the cool without spending too much or going too far:

Sip_TheRobey 14.JPG

The rooftop pool at Cabana Club on the 6th floor of The Robey Hotel.

Brian Rich/Chicago Sun-Times

1. Find a pool to jump into

The Chicago Park District manages 50 outdoor pools across the city, along with 27 indoor pools. The city’s outdoor pools opened Monday and close just before Chicago Public Schools resume in August, according to the park district. Open swim is free, while lap swimming requires a membership ($25 for one month or $42 for three months).

Single day pool passes for purchase

  • Some Chicago hotels sell day passes to their pools. At the InterContinental, a day pass to enjoy one of the oldest pools in the city is $40 for adults and $25 for kids. The pass also includes access to the hotel’s sauna and fitness center. 505 N. Michigan Ave.
  • The Robey in Wicker Park sells day passes to its Cabana Club, a rooftop bar that has a small pool — better suited for a quick dip than a full pool day. Adult tickets are $15 during the week and $30 on the weekends (kids are $10 any day of the week) and include access to amenities such as Wi-Fi, towel service, a welcome drink and more. 2018 W. North Ave.
  • Some gyms, like Life Time at One Chicago, also offer a day pass for $50 , which includes pool access. 15 W. Chicago Ave.

Suburban water parks with nonresident passes

  • Orland Park’s Centennial Park Aquatic Center has water slides and a lazy river. Day passes for non-Orland Park residents are $25 Monday–Thursday and $26 on weekends and holidays. 15600 West Ave, Orland Park.
  • The Heritage Park Family Aquatic Center in Wheeling is a massive outdoor water park featuring large, faux rock structures and waterfalls. There are diving boards, a sand play area and waterslides. Day passes are $15, and kids younger than 2 get in free. 105 Community Blvd., Wheeling.
  • One of the largest water parks in the area, Mystic Waters Family Aquatic Center in Des Plaines, has multiple water slides, cliff dives and a zero-depth pool to soak in. General admission is $20 for adults, and $17.75 for kids 17 and younger and seniors 60 and older. 2025 Miner St., Des Plaines.

Millennium Park's Crown Fountain

Millennium Park’s Crown Fountain offers a way to stay cool while experiencing public art.

2. Play at a splash pad

From June to August, dozens of local parks offer spray features — AKA splash pads — that are perfect for the young (and young at heart) to cool off on a hot day.

Perhaps the most visible splash pad in the city is the Crown Fountain in Millennium Park , which includes two 50-foot towers with a shallow pool in between. Designed by artist Jaume Plensa, the fountain is a boost to both public art and a welcome chance to cool off. 201 E. Randolph St.

The city also has a handful of water playgrounds , many of which are adjacent to outdoor swimming pools.

Heat Wave

Chicago’s beach season runs through Labor Day.

Pat Nabong/Sun-Times

3. Take a trip to the beach

One of the best — and easiest — ways to cool off in the summertime is to hop in Lake Michigan. With 26 miles of lakefront access to enjoy, there is no shortage of options. The city’s beach season runs through Labor Day.

Some favorites include:

  • Montrose Beach , where there’s a dog-friendly beach and ample bird watching alike. Montrose is also Chicago’s only beach that allows kiteboarding. 4400 N. DuSable Lake Shore Drive.
  • Ohio Street Beach , which offers lockers for swimmers to protect their belongings. Whether just taking a dip or training for the triathlon, bring your own lock. 600 N. DuSable Lake Shore Drive.
  • Margaret T. Burroughs Beach — AKA, 31st Street Beach — boasts some of the best views of the skyline. 3100 S. DuSable Lake Shore Drive .
  • Promontory Point in Hyde Park has lake access and trails for walking or biking. Check out this full WBEZ guide to the park . 5491 S. DuSable Lake Shore Drive.
  • 63rd Street Beach is one of Chicago’s largest beaches and also features one of the city’s biggest and oldest beach houses, which was completed in 1919. The beach also has a nonmotorized boat launch. 6300 S. DuSable Lake Shore Drive.
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4. Rent a boat

Whether on the river or the lake, getting out on a boat is the perfect way to enjoy a summer day. Luckily, there are so many options, from the adventurous to the laid back.

Chicago Electric Boat Company ’s diverse fleet of boats ranges from comfortable cruisers such as the Duffy electric boats (rentals from $155), which are prime for sitting back and relaxing with drinks and snacks on the water; to modern classics like the Retro Boats, which are refurbished and retrofitted with eco-friendly electric motors (rentals from $145). Chicago Electric Boat Company has four locations on the river: at Marina City , the Chicago Water Plaza , the Chicago Riverwalk downtown and at the new Rockwell on the River on the North Branch. 300 N. State St. Marina Level – Unit EE. You can even hire a certified captain to drive if your whole crew wants to take advantage of a day on the water without the stress of manning the ship.

Chicagoans are likely familiar with one of the most popular boat experiences on the Chicago River: The Chicago Architecture Foundation’s boat tour (from $54). 112 E. Wacker Drive.

Kayakers in the water.

Multiple companies offer kayaking tours of the Chicago River and Lake Michigan.

Manuel Martinez/WBEZ

5. Go paddling

Kayak Chicago , Urban Kayaks and Wateriders offer tours at multiple locations along the river and Lake Michigan.

The city’s boathouses are also a great place to rent a kayak or canoe to paddle the water. You can rent a canoe or kayak from Chicago River Canoe & Kayak at the Clark Park Boathouse (3400 N. Rockwell); a canoe, kayak or stand-up paddle board from the Lincoln Park Boat Club at the Lincoln Park Boathouse (2341 N. Cannon Drive); and kayaks from REI at Ping Tom Memorial Park Boathouse in Chinatown (300 W. 19th St.).

This WBEZ guide to kayaking outside the city includes more than a dozen other recommendations.

Chicago’s yacht clubs offer sailing lessons to kids and adults.

Chicago’s yacht clubs offer sailing lessons to kids and adults.

6. Take a sail

Chicago’s yacht clubs offer sailing lessons to both adults and kids brand new to the sport. All the courses get new sailors out on the water and cover the basic skills you’ll need to be comfortable setting sail.

  • Chicago Corinthian Yacht Club has four-week adult sailing lessons at different levels. They also offer a “women on the water” course, designed by and for women sailors. Courses are $385 for non-club members. The club also offers a variety of youth sailing programs ; prices vary. 601 W. Montrose Ave.
  • Columbia Sailing School ’s learn-to-sail introductory course teaches all the sailing basics over two sessions ($220). Youth summer sailing programs are also offered. 111 N. DuSable Lake Shore Drive.
  • The Chicago Yacht Club ’s sailing education program is spread out across three sessions and costs $730 for non-club members. Summer sailing school for youngsters is broken up by age group. 400 E. Monroe St.
  • Jackson Park Yacht Club ’s learn-to-sail program is led by seasoned sailor Erica Trejo. The three-session courses include both classroom and on-the-water instruction and cost $499 for non-club members. Junior sailing classes are also available. 6400 S. Promontory Drive.
View this post on Instagram A post shared by Chicago Rowing Foundation (@chicagorowing)

7. Try out rowing

No matter if you’re an experienced rower or brand new to the sport, you can join the city’s vibrant rowing community. The Chicago Rowing Foundation (CRF) hosts camps, clinics and seasonal teams from its location out of the Clark Park Boathouse . Adults can sign up online for a learn-to-row class (from $200); youth can join the summer or fall camp to prepare for teams that run during the school year. 3400 N. Rockwell St.

The Lincoln Park Boat Club , which rows out of the Lincoln Park Boathouse, Clark Park Boathouse and Lathrop Homes Boathouse, also offers youth teams and camps. Its nine-session learn-to-row courses for adults (from $310) are popular for beginner rowers. 2341 N. Cannon Drive.

HEAT-061724-17.jpg

You can take stand-up paddleboarding, or SUP, lessons on Lake Michigan.

Tyler Pasciak LaRiviere/Chicago Sun-Times

8. Stand up for paddleboarding

If you’re up for a different kind of challenge, give stand-up paddleboarding — also called SUP — a go on Lake Michigan.

If you’re new to the sport and want to give it a try with some help, local outfitter Chicago SUP offers private lessons ($100) and group lessons (from $75) from its locations at North Avenue Beach and Diversey Harbor.

Further north at Montrose Beach, Kayak Chicago also rents stand-up paddleboards on the lakefront. Closer to downtown, Urban Kayaks offers rentals at Monroe Harbor.

If you’re a yoga fan, Chicago SUP’s on-paddleboard yoga class (from $75) challenges your balance while stretching your body. You can even take their full moon SUP yoga class on Lake Michigan under the glow of the night sky.

Tip for first-timers: You’ll want to pick a nonwindy day to avoid the waves. We also recommend bringing a dry bag for your wallet and phone, waterproof sandals (such as Chacos ) and a carabiner to clip your keys to your belt loop so you don’t drop them in the lake.

Courtney Kueppers is an arts and culture reporter at WBEZ. Freelancer Erica Zazo contributed reporting.

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Shelter island’s menantic yacht club is setting sail into 2024.

By Robert Harris

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The Menantic Yacht Club (MYC) is back for another season of fun Sunfish racing and camaraderie.

Our membership has increased over the years, with an average of 25 sailors participating every weekend. There will be one major change this year as the MYC’s long-time Commodore Pete Bethge has retired; he and Sallie are now enjoying life full-time in Florida. The MYC leadership now consists of yours truly as commodore, Steve Shepstone as vice commodore, Melissa Shepstone as treasurer, and Betsy Colby as secretary.

I hope everyone had an enjoyable winter and spring. I know some of our sailors, including Peter Beardsley, Alicia Rojas and Lee Montes, did their share of frostbiting over the winter.

On a sad note, Dave Olsen, a long-time, much-loved member of the MYC passed in December. Dave was a top notch sailor who was more interested in giving a helping hand to anyone in need, on or off the race course, than in finishing first. Dave hand-made a number of the MYC’s most beautiful trophies; some of his handmade trophies reside at the Shelter Island Yacht Club as well.

Dave, with his green helmet and helping hand, will be missed by the entire Shelter Island sailing community, and especially by the MYC.

On Sunday June 23, Vice-Commodore Steve Shepstone will hold a Race Committee “Tune-Up Practice” at 1 p.m. at his home at 5 Wheeler Road. He will review RC duties, including safety procedures, sailing instructions, mark placements and communications. Review will be both on shore and on water. Volunteers and sailors are  invited and should attend. RSVP to Steve Shepstone ( [email protected] ). You will learn about the finer points of conducting sailboat races. Steve is a judge with US Sailing.

Charlie Modica has a special treat in store for everyone this summer — stay tuned.

Betty Bishop and Matt Fox will captain the stake and mark boats, and hopefully our dedicated crew of volunteers will return: Debra Mintz, Amy Cococcia, Dave Daly, Ben Gonzales, Melanie Coronetz, Rita Gates, Ed Goble Elsie Rose, Mike Donlon, Susan Donlon, and all the others who volunteer from time-to-time.

And, of course, Betsy Colby will be race PRO, hopefully assisted by Marion Thomsen, Ed Hydeman and others. Non-sailors from the Shelter Island community are also invited to volunteer. Charlie, as usual, will loan the MYC his inflatable for use as the stake boat, and Jonathan Brush’s powerboat will be used by the Race Committee. Tom NcMahon’s BW will be used also.

Prior to the first race on Sunday, June 30, there will be a skippers’ meeting at our “clubhouse” at Commodore Pete’s Landing, i.e., the North Silver Beach Town landing, starting at 12:30 p.m., with the first horn going off at 2 p.m.

We will all have a chance to catch up with each other after a long winter, and to answer any questions about the upcoming season. If you have not already returned your waivers and membership forms, please bring them. They will also be available at the meeting.

The MYC was started in 1933, continued until the early 1950’s, and then had a hiatus until Commodore Pete reactivated it in 1968. Back in the day, Commodore Pete sailed Cape Cod Rockets; later he switched to Sunfish, which we sail today. In the words of Commodore Pete: “Menantic Yacht Club has a wonderful history of being a welcoming club. We are very proud of our two “C’s — camaraderie and Corinthian sailing.”

The MYC is a family-oriented club, and we would love to have some younger sailors join us. In previous years we have had families sailing together and as teams sharing the same boat.

We are a very congenial club, open to all. We may not have a clubhouse, but the sailing is great, the camaraderie is superb, and we just have tremendous fun. All sailors, novice to expert, are welcome. Just show up in West Neck Harbor at 2 on any Sunday starting on June 30 and going through September 1 the Sunday of Labor Day weekend.

Check in with the Race Committee giving them your full name and sail number, and be sure to bring your life jacket. Non-sailors are also welcome to assist with the Race Committee and stake boats. You can get more information about the MYC from our Facebook page: Menantic Yacht Club, or from Bob Harris at [email protected] . Steve and Melissa Shepstone have a fleet of loaner boats available on a first to reserve basis. Contact Ellen Leonforte at 914-450-1450 or at [email protected] to reserve your boat.

The MYC is a Shelter Island tradition. Let’s keep up the tradition, so please join us this summer for some of the best fun you will ever have.

See you on the water.

On a another note: congratulations to Peter Beardsley, Lee Montes, Paul Zinge, Rich Prieto and others on their participation in the Sunfish North American Championships this past weekend. Peter and Lee qualified for the Worlds. No small feat against 105 other competitors.

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