RRYC was founded in 1936 in Irvington, Virginia, to serve the interests of local pleasure boat owners.
Together the first members acquired the present property on Carter’s Creek off the Rappahannock River, just down King Carter Drive from Tide’s Inn.
In those early days, annual regattas featured races for both power and sailboats. By the end of World War II, however, one-design sailboat racing began to predominate regattas. Hamptons, Snipes, Penguins, and Moths were especially popular.
In 1941, a new structure was built, which forms the main portion of the present clubhouse. As interest in yachting declined in the 1950s, membership languished and the property was acquired for commercial use as a resort and marina. RRYC members continued to meet in the clubhouse they had built, however.
The club was reorganized in 1970 and was able to lease the clubhouse and grounds the following year. By 1976, the membership reclaimed ownership of the property. The next few years saw upgrades to the pier and slips as well as the construction of the swimming pool that serves the club today. RRYC hired its first year-round Manager/Steward.
By 1983, establishment of the Rappahannock River Sailing Association and the first Rappahannock Cup races sealed the prominence of sailing on the Rappahannock River and its creeks. Since then, RRYC has maintained a strong racing program and an active cruising schedule. On-the-water training classes are taught in summers for adults and juniors. One-design races are contested in Optimist, Laser, Sunfish, and Typhoon classes. Four Chesapeake Bay Yacht Racing Association sanctioned regattas are held each year for boats registered in the Performance Handicap Racing Fleet.
Today RRYC is a vibrant and active Club enjoying a resurgence in membership and activities, both on and off the water. Many new fleets and interests of the members have brought our Club into the twenty-first century with burgee flying high.