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Celebrating 40 years on the Lowcountry waters!

On Tuesday May 17 the Hilton Head Plantation Yacht Club held its annual Change of Watch and Commodores’ Ball. New officers of the Bridge, (a nautical term for the center of operations), were sworn in at the Country Club of Hilton Headfollowed by dinner and dancing.

The ceremony began with an invocation offered by Ron Latin including a prayer attributed to explorer Francis Drake:

To venture on wider seas

Where storms will show your mastery

Where losing sight of land we shall find the stars

We ask you to push back the horizons of our hopes and to push into the future

In strength, courage, hope, and love

During Tuesday’s event, outgoing Commodore Wayne Mitchell handed over command to the new commodore Van Schwiebert. The transfer was overseen by 12 past commodores and marks the 40th anniversary of the Club, one of the oldest organizations in Hilton head Plantation

The new Commodore has been a boater since 1953. Van has enjoyed sailing in the Lowcountry and up and down the coast and on numerous trips to The Bahamas aboard S/V Gratitude with his lovely first mate Lauren and his sea going cat Thumbelina. They also enjoy sharing the adventure with fellow Yacht Club members at various Club boating events. Accepting his command, Van swore to uphold the Hilton Head Yacht Club experience where fun and friendships thrive.


Past Commodore Mitchell thanked everyone for their support during his command. Commodore Mitchell took delight and had the honor to introduce the past commodores attending and to pass out this year’s trophies:

Commodore’s Trophy to Lori Yingling for her diligent and enthusiastic dedication to the success of the Yacht Club and planning of social events.

Commodore’s cup to Mary Francis Peery for her participation and attention to detail in bringing the Club’s financial records current and in good order.

“Up the Creek” paddle to Scott Mueller for his maritime misadventure being stopped by the Coast Guard on a Club outing to Daufuskie Island.

Interested or curious about being part of the adventure? Explore our website at All residents of HHP may join the Club. Social memberships are available for non-boat owners. Contact Membership officer Malcolm

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Van Schwiebert
Van Schwiebert
Jun 20, 2022

Except for the hat (tradition, you know!) it was a fun event. Thanks, Wayne, for the hand off!

Wayne MItchell
Wayne MItchell
Jun 20, 2022
Replying to

Tradition, tradition, tradition!

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