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Fish Fry, Fireworks and History

By lukey - Published July 08, 2008 - Viewed 9418 times

The marina I live at is wonderful in many respects (more later), but it has zero facilities and zero things to do. Well, not quite zero... one can always hang out and gossip, but with only about 30 of us, that gets pretty old. I did give permission to one of the more shameless gossips to make up stuff about me, but that's as far as I get into that scene.

For boating-related comaraderie, I usually head over to a sweet little no-frills boat club named Seafarers. It's up the Anacostia in an area that some call Boat House Row, others call it by different names as the area is not exactly chic. The street it's on is narrow, unpaved, dark and is squeezed into a dead-end between the river and the railway tracks. Not a place a tourist would feel comfortable walking.

However, it's a lively place with Friday fish fries, monthly BBQ's or discos and very nice people. We were invited for their Independence Day party. Billy, the Commodore is also a caterer and keeps a few of his old BBQ grills on site. Lots of ribs and chicken and dogs under the tents. Afterwards we sat on the boats and watched the fireworks set off at the park across the river.

Seafarers also has the distinction of being the oldest black  yacht club on the East Coast.  The Seafarers Club was organized in 1945 by Lewis T. Green, Sr., a wood carver and vocational arts teacher in the DC Public Schools. Green built boats as a hobby, and in his search for a place to dock one of his boats, he contacted the Department of the Interior about this site. Told that he should establish a boat club, he did so, but waited in vain for a response from the government. Eventually, with the help of Mary McLeod Bethune and First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, he was able to rent the land for the club. The site originally was called Green's Boat Yard, and club members improved the marshy land and built docks and a clubhouse.

Kinda ironic... celebrating Independence Day in such surroundings

Sign posted at Seafarers Yacht Club












Above: The plaque at Seafarers commemorating the oldest Black Yacht Club on the East Coast.

Right: Lewis Green Sr., the founder of Seafarers Yacht Club

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