Pooldeck Party at the Oyster Bay Yacht Club

Late last spring, the Oyster Bay Yacht Club across the Amelia River, quietly received an almost complete management facelift, which has since been making positive waves both in the membership and community.

Under the inspired leadership of Yacht Club manager Terrie Sanders, who came from 17 years with the Amelia Island Plantation as meeting planner and conference sales manager, the club is scoring high notes in fun event planning and food and beverage service. With Terrie came Executive Chef and Food and Beverage Manager Shawn Meeks who previously was sous-chef at PLaE (People Laughing and Eating) Restaurant at the Plantation, real estate sales manager Brad Hummel and always entertaining harbourmaster Sean McCarthy. Troubadour McCarthy, who has quite a reputation as a performer in the Jimmy Buffet inspired genre of countrified story telling, has been the Marina’s harbour master since the marina opened several years back, touting the advantages of owning a slip in this modern, well equipped, storm safe anchorage that gives easy access to the open ocean, downtown Fernandina Beach, a quick boat trip to Jacksonville and places south or just a Saturday morning fishing in one of the many Nassau County Marsh coves.

The 7,500 square foot yacht club building offers numerous amenities including ample meeting space for many venues from small family gatherings, corporate events, weddings and more. The main club room is expansive with great fireplace and comfortable seating. High speed Wi-Fi is available throughout the facility. There are meeting areas for private dining or larger events with extensive covered porch verandas at poolside, north and south sides. A full bar and grill is available. There are complete workout facilities as well as locker areas and laundry facilities. Views from poolside are spectacular for waterways and Cumberland Island in the background.

Manager Terrie is promoting the opportunity for locals to join the Yacht Club with social memberships and enjoy the peaceful attraction of this old waterfront plantation community.
With the roads now paved all the way to the Yacht Club, the short nature trek past the meandering bird populations and plentiful foliage is fascinating and enjoyable and with her track record deeply anchored in special events, meeting planning and weddings, it should not come as a surprise that wedding and small convention planners (up to 200 people) are discovering the perfect setting of the club for their special occasions as it witnessed by the increasing numbers of weddings, anniversaries and meetings that are filling the club’s agenda.

The new management quartet has set out to bring fun and activity to Oyster Bay Yacht Club with lots of events, live music and anchored in superb food service.
We recently went to check out the Thrill on the Grill Experience on the Pool Deck as well as the Low Country Boil, much to our pleasure. Food was great, ambiance was informal, lively and friendly, live music was entertaining and we had a great evening.
Both times we were there, there were in excess of 120 diner guests and the outside bar was an oasis of friendly shatter only highlighted by the live music and party atmosphere.

Sean McCarthy’s brother Kevin, a man who knows more about the area’s history than anyone I know, also owns and operates the Amelia River Cruises, which has started to do regular Fernandina Downtown Waterfront to Oyster Bay Yacht Club ferry rides, with occasional live music and party gear lined up. Those who have done the trip, can’t wait for the next one.

Amelia Island native Terrie Sanders and her team feel right at home in their new environment and it shows. The Oyster Bay Harbour, Marina and Yacht Club website keeps members and visitors abreast of the weekly events, opening hours and menus. Check it out.