The Key Colony Beach Fishing and Boating Club was an idea begun by Chris Christensen, Frank Capozzi and Tucker De Graw in the winter of 1994. They had the idea that a club could be formed to promote fishing, boating and fellowship in KCB. In addition they felt that by getting a group together it would be possible to approach various fuel dealers and bait shops for a discount.
The first Executive Board Meeting was held on November 26th, 1994. At the December meeting the First Official Officers were installed, Chris Christensen as Commodore, Frank Capozzi as Vice Commodore, Tucker De Graw as Recording Secretary and Pete Johnson as Treasurer.
Pete Johnson felt incorporation to be important in establishing the club, and on January 25, 1995, Tucker De Graw incorporated the club as a not-for-profit organization devoted to boating and fishing and to encourage good fellowship among the members.
There were 90 charter members. The By-Laws written by Jack Genader were officially adopted at the February 9, 1996 meeting, held at the Cabana Club, by a unanimous vote of the members who were present.
At the January 12th 1995 meeting a Tournament Committee to plan and run proposed tournaments was formed with Steve Philcox, Dick Ray, Bud Meyer and Bob Ofria as the committee members. The First Annual KCB Fishing And Boating Club Dolphin Tournament was held on April 18, 1995. Entry fee was $30.00 per boat. The tournament was sponsored by Captain Hooks.
In 1995 there was also a fishing trip aboard the Marathon Lady that 66 members participated and a cruise to Bahia Honda that 35 boaters attended. In the fall of 1995, John Busch published the first KCB Fishing and Boating Club Newsletter.
In 1996 the same members served as Officers as in 1995. The membership was up to 103 people. In January of the same year Steve Philcox, the Tournament Director organized a Snapper Tournament. Total combined weigh of any five (5) snapper. Twenty four (24) prizes were donated by local merchants.
Other activities in 1996 included a Dinner Dance at City Hall and another Marathon Lady Trip. In the fall of 1996, the club published its first Newsletter.
1997 events included a picnic at Inch Beach in February organized by Ken Cianchette and Jack Filoon. This was the beginning of the Clambake. The following year the picnic was moved to the park near the bocce ball courts. There was also a cruise to Flamingo, a Dolphin Tournament and a Snapper/Grouper Tournament.
Elections were held for Officers and in January 1998, the new officers assumed their positions. Chet Dunn became Commodore, Tucker De Graw, Vice Commodore, Pete Johnson, Treasurer, and Ed Sheahan, Secretary.
Many events were scheduled in 1998 including the first Past Commodore’s Fish Fry and a sunset KCB canal cruise for members who no longer have boats but welcomed the opportunity to see KCB again from the water. There was another picnic at Inch Beach and a Marathon Lady trip. It is also notable that for the first time the club picnic was held in the 7th Street park near the Bocce Courts.
A Yellowtail Tournament was held on January 31, 1998 won by John Bush (3.9Lb) and a Dolphin Tournament won by Dick Ray. In 1999, elections were held again for Officers. Chet Dunn remained as Commodore, Ed Sheahan also remained the Secretary, Dick Goodwin became the new Treasurer, and George Wright was elected Vice Commodore. Events in 1999 included an Inch Beach Flare Shoot, Annual Clam Bake, Marathon Lady Trip, and a Spaghetti Dinner. An extremely windy winter did not allow for any tournaments. A New Year’s Eve party was held in Marble Hall with 130 members attending to usher in the new Millennium. In the year 2000, the Annual Clam Bake was held in the park, Spaghetti Dinner, a New Years Eve Party, and several Fishing Tournaments.
Officers for the year 2001, were Barney Carbin, Commodore, Frank Knorr, Vice Commodore, Ron Harrington, Secretary, and Peter Johnson/Diana Mc Intosh. The Club sponsored a CPR Course, and held several fishing tournaments. The Spaghetti Dinner was held in March at the Moose Lodge.
In 2002, Gail Cortelyou was approved for the position of Secretary. The Clambake was expanded to include shrimp, clams, and French fries. As in previous years, there was a Marathon Lady Cruise, a Spaghetti Dinner, and monthly tournaments. The 2003 Clambake was a huge success with over 250 persons attending.
New officers were elected in 2004 and included Bob Willey, Commodore, Chick Lees, Vice Commodore, Gail Cortelyou, Treasurer, and Tucker De Graw, Secretary. The Club joined the Recreation Fishing Association. Past Commodore Chet Dunn led a group of three boats and sixteen members and guests to East Cape for a day of shelling, wildlife viewing and lunch. There was another great Marathon Lady trip with Butch Betiam catching a 30” 15 ½ lb Mutton Snapper.
In 2005, all officers with the exception of Gail Cortelyou remained in office for the next year. Gail became the Commodore of the Power Squadron and stepped down. Peter Johnson was approved as the new Treasurer. The Club had a very successful clambake, several fishing tournaments and a great End of Season Dinner catered by Cabana Breezes.
The summer of 2006 was a great time for wahoo with Tyson’s and Packer’s loading the box with wahoo, dolphin and grouper. Ron Harrington and Dick Ray also landed some impressive wahoo.
Cheryl Tyson became Recording Secretary in 2006 and Joe Schmidt took over as Membership Chairman. Bill Packer was Tournament Director, Ron Sutton was Director-at-Large and Orv Broberg and Mike Quaife were the Directors of Fund Raising.
In 2007, several boats from Fishing Club members participated in the Christmas Boat Parade. Both Chet Dunn and Corky Spehrley received awards and honors for their vessels. Don Palmer won the Skinny Water Tournament.
Elections for Officers were held in 2008 and “Big” Joe Schmidt began his reign as our new Commodore. Peter Hines was elected to Vice Commodore, Chick Lees, Treasurer, Lyn Patterson, Recording Secretary, Dick Waltz, Membership Secretary, Bob Warn, Director at Large, John Fruhmorgan, Tournament Director, and Orv Broberg/Frank Gessell, Directors of Fundraising. We had another great Clambake and very competitive monthly tournaments in 2008.
In January of 2009, Dick Waltz resigned as Membership Secretary and Director at Large Bob Warn agreed to take his place. Bill Knickman was asked to be accepted as Director at Large and received unanimous approval. There was a sunset cruise and Valhalla sandbar party in January that was enjoyed by all attending. February provided the club with a beautiful day for the Clambake. This event continues to grow larger and better every year. Our tournaments continue to grow and new sponsors were added again in 2009. The members and guests enjoy another great clambake and the End of Season Dinner was fabulous.
In 2010, the existing Board of Directors was reelected to an additional two year term. Again the club enjoyed some great fishing tournaments and a terrific Clambake and End of Season Dinner. A New Year’s Eve party at City Hall rang in the New Year for the club. Once again the club was able to donate significant contributions to local charities.
In 2012, new Officers and Board of Directors were voted into office: Bill Knickman as Commodore; Bob Warn, Vice Commodore; Chick Lees, Treasurer; John Fruhmorgan, Tournament Director; Marian Buccafurni, Recording Secretary; Jerry Ellis, Director at Large; Tom Alferes, Fund Raising Chairman; and Ron and Tania Teke, Membership Secretaries.
On April 1, 2016, the club elected a new Commodore, Tom Alferes. Also new on the Executive Board are Joey Raspe as fundraising director, and Ron and Tania Teke, returning as membership directors. Re-elected to the board: Marian Buccafurni , Chick Lees, Joe Schmidt, Bob Warn, John Fruhmorgan and Mike Alexander.
Joe Schmidt reclaimed his Commodore role in April 2020. Remaining on the board are John Fruhmorgen – Tournament Director, Tom Alferes – Past Commodore, and Joey Raspe -Fundraising Chair. Newly elected are Suzan Redding as Vice Commodore, Stephanie Withrow as Treasurer, Cheryl Boehm as Recording Secretary, Pat Fischer as Membership Chair, and Danny Grimm as Director at Large.
The Club is one of the largest Fishing and Boating Clubs in the Florida Keys. With over two-hundred members, we are dedicated to fishing, boating and good fellowship among our members. We have many tournaments throughout the season sponsored by local merchants as well as cruises, dinners, parties and meetings.
We invite you to explore our website and learn more about our wonderful club. Key Colony Beach, the Gem of the Florida Keys, is located in the Middle Keys near Marathon, Florida. With direct access to the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico, we enjoy some of the very best fishing and boating that the Florida Keys have to offer.
Our members continue to support our Club and volunteer for many chores and duties which enhance their experience and benefits our Club. Because of these efforts by our members, we are able to help support many charity organizations in our community.
The club meets six times a year from November through April. Due to Covid we are meeting on 8th Street at the maintenance garages on the 1st Friday of the month. Meetings are open to members and guests of members only.
Commodore Joe Schmidt can be reached at 856-857-4611 or email@example.com.