Legend by the Lake
The Balmy Beach Club, a non-profit organization, has served Toronto, the Beach community and its amateur athlete members for 100 years.
The Club land was deeded to the residents of the Beach by Sir Adam Wilson and The Balmy Beach Club was incorporated in 1903 so its members could pursue such sports as “lawn bowling, tennis quoits, rowing, sailing, swimming, shooting, golf, baseball, football and cricket”. Construction of the Club House was underway and it was opened for its members in 1905. Fire destroyed the Club House in 1936 but through the efforts of several of its members; it was rebuilt, only to have another fire destroy that Club House in 1963. Again, a number of members wasted little time in rebuilding the Club House and the present Club House was reopened in 1965.
Initially, The Balmy Beach Club was made up of two main sections - The Balmy Beach Canoe Club and The Balmy Beach Lawn Bowling Club. The Balmy Beach Lawn Bowling Club involved just that, but The Balmy Beach Canoe Club had under its jurisdiction the operation of other sections - the Rugby Club, the Hockey Club, the Squash Club; and other sports such as football, harriers, volleyball, basketball, deck tennis, surf boarding, tennis and anything that the members wanted to take part in. Needless to say, membership kept growing and in 1972 the Constitution of The Balmy Beach Club was rewritten and its Board of Directors became an elected body by all members of The Balmy Beach Club.
Incorporated into the Constitution was the formation of five sections
•The Balmy Beach Canoe Club
•The Balmy Beach Lawn Bowling Club
•The Balmy Beach Rugby Club
•The Balmy Beach Hockey Club
•The Balmy Beach Squash Club
The Balmy Beach Canoe Club is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the sport of sprint canoe and kayak racing in the Beach community. The Club’s goal is to provide a safe and enjoyable, recreational and/or competitive environment, for members of all ages and abilities. Programs are designed to develop both the physical and mental strength of individual members while encouraging team and Club spirit.
BALMY BEACH CANOE CLUB HISTORY
Canoe racing has been part of The Balmy Beach Canoe Club since 1905 and it was then that it held its first regatta. In 1907, the Club joined the Canoe Kayak Canada (“CKC”); presently it is one of six member clubs of the Western Ontario Division (“WOD”) of CKC. Competitive racing is offered in eight age categories, ranging from Atom (under age 10) to Masters (over age 25).
Our Club has a rich tradition of successful competition over the years at the international and national levels.
In 1924, canoeing was accepted as an exhibition event at the 1924 Olympic Games in Paris, France, and it was Beach’s Roy Nurse that led the way with two gold and four bronze medals.
In 1936, at the Olympic Games in Berlin, Germany, Harvey Charter and Warren Saker in C-2 won silver and bronze medals. Team-mate, Bill Williamson, was also selected to race in double blade singles (kayaks were not used at the time). This video recently surfaced showing Canada's first every gold medal in 1000m canoe at these games.
Norm Lane, paddling in C-1, won a bronze medal at the 1948 Games in London, England, and brother, Ken Lane, with Don Hawgood in C-2 won silver medals at the 1952 Games in Helsinki, Finland.
Jim Mossman, Head Coach of the Club for over 25 years, was selected to coach Canada’s National Canoe Team at the 1960, 1964, 1968 and 1972 Olympics.
At the national level, Balmy Beach has won the overall National Championships (the coveted “Burgee”) in 1915, 1919, 1920, 1951 and 1955.
The management of the affairs of The Balmy Beach Canoe Club is vested entirely in its Executive Board. The Executive Board consists of the offices of Commodore, 1st Vice-Commodore, 2nd Vice-Commodore, Rear Commodore, Treasurer, Secretary, Past Commodores, a Paddlers’ Representative, the Head Coach and Executive appointed Directors.