The Jack London Lodge Saloon–located at the base of the road leading to Jack London State Historic Park in Glen Ellen–is the official clubhouse for the nonprofit Jack London Yacht Club, a group of volunteers that supports other local nonprofits and public entities through fundraising efforts and engagement in Sonoma County.
Inspired by the seafaring adventures of author Jack London and his wife Charmian, the Jack London Yacht Club has all the trappings of a traditional yacht club, except for the fact that the “yachts” measure 22-inches long, and sail miles from any ocean or bay.
These miniature boats– which are replicas of Jack London’s own boat, the “SNARK”–normally sail each spring in the nonprofit’s signature Jack to Jack Yacht Race that covers a .7 mile course along the Sonoma Creek in Glen Ellen.
When the local government allows, the Jack London Yacht Club intends to start up the Jack to Jack Yacht Race again. For now, the club is teaming with La Luz Center to support Latino families in the area and donating four annual passes to Jack London State Historic Park in celebration of Cinco de Mayo.
Each pass provides admission for one vehicle of guests (up to nine people) for each visit in the 12-month period.
“This has been an exceptionally tough year for everyone, especially children,” said Commodore Jim Burch of the Jack London Yacht Club in a statement. “We want to provide an opportunity for families to get out and have some fun together in the fresh air and natural beauty of the park.”
Jack London State Historic Park will match the donation. The park is operated and funded by Jack London Park Partners, the first private organization to be entrusted with management of a state park on behalf of the people of California.
“We are inspired by the Yacht Club’s generous donation and want to support their efforts and the programs of La Luz Center,” said Matt Leffert, executive director of Jack London State Historic Park, in a statement. “The park offers all who visit a chance to experience and explore nature and history in the place the Londons called Beauty Ranch.”
La Luz Center strengthens the Latino community through family services, economic advancement and community engagement.
“We appreciate the kind gifts of the yacht club and the park,” said Sharon Somogyi, donor stewardship manager at La Luz Center, in a statement. “The wonderful opportunity for families to enjoy the beauty and recreation that is right here in our own backyard is priceless.”
Additionally, Jack London State Historic Park recently began holding weekly drawings to award an Annual Pass to a lucky visitor. Volunteers stationed in the parking lots collect entries on weekends.
The park’s museum reopened on March 17 after surviving both the pandemic and the Glass fire within the past year.
Jack London State Historic Park hours are 9am to 5pm daily; museum is open 10am to 5pm; the cottage is open noon to 4 pm. The annual pass is valued at $49; regular admission is $10 per vehicle. For more information, visit jacklondonpark.com.