ICE YACHTERS HOPE FOR HISTORY & ICE

Today’s Asbury Park Press reports that the home of the North Shrewsbury Ice Boat and Yacht Club is close to winning state designation as an historic structure.

Ice

The building is in Red Bank on the Navesink River (known as the North Shrewsbury until the early decades of the 20th century), a body of water that this week happens to be nearing sailability—a rare condition in recent years.

The ice yachters hope that the recent Arctic weather blast lasts long enough to give them their first chance to sail locally since 2003, perhaps as soon as this weekend.

The National Weather Service forecasts temperatures that, in combination with wind-chill, could give the ice boaters what they’re hoping for.

As to the history, the Press says:

Past Commodore William Comella has led an effort to have the group’s home, adjacent to Marine Park, placed on both the National and State Registers of Historic Places. The review of the application will be conducted by the New Jersey State Review Board for Historic Sites at a Feb. 15 meeting in Trenton.

The club was formed by eight local yachtsman on Dec. 20, 1880, making this the oldest club dedicated solely to ice boating to continue to meet in its own clubhouse.

Club officials said the present two-level clubhouse, which has a workshop and upstairs meeting area, was moved to its present location in 1923.

The exact former use of the building is not known, but Commodore Dave Minton said research has led club members to believe it had been an out building for a former tomato canning plant that was nearby, or part of the horse stables for the old Globe Hotel.

“There was a myth that the building was the old Sea Bright Railroad Station,” said Minton, who grew up in Red Bank and now lives in West Long Branch. “We’ve been finding out a lot better information in the research for the historic application.”

The story quotes Minton as saying that the clubhouse and the neighboring Monmouth Boat Club, which was included on the New Jersey Register of Historic Places in 1994, “are the last two original riverfront buildings from the old Red Bank waterside.”