Every place has a story …
for the Quartzsite Yacht Club, Restaurant, Bar & Grill …
It all began with ‘Commodore’ Al Madden (1919-1996)
Al Madden, who had an investment company in California, worked on a gold mine venture for clients in Quartzite, Arizona during the 1970’s. Although this business venture was not successful, Al spent a lot of time in Quartzite, and had noticed that the local beer bar, “The Jigsaw”, was for sale. It was a little building made of gray cement blocks, and as it looked on the outside, so it looked on the inside – not very appealing! However, Al must have seen some potential that others had missed and he bought it anyway with the help of his sons and family.
Welcome aboard – long time no sea!
Al had always been gifted with humor, wit and an active imagination. He decided to have some fun and changed the name to “The Yacht Club” with the motto “Welcome aboard – long time no sea!” To get the ball rolling, Al sold memberships in the Yacht Club to any qualified visitors (in those days you needed $10.00 to qualify), and lo and behold, he became an instant Commodore.
Many improvements and additions were added to the Yacht Club, and before long the number of memberships started to grow and grow. There are members from every state in the U.S. and from countries all over the world. We now boast a membership total of over almost 10,000 members. Some members have even used their wallet cards to be admitted to exclusive yacht clubs all over the world.
Due to an electrical malfunction in 1995, the original Yacht Club burned to the ground. Rebuilding was quite a challenge and it took it’s toll on Al. Just as the new Yacht Club was reopening, his health began to suffer and was gone within the year.
The Commodore’s legacy is still very much alive. In addition to the pool games, music, and dancing of the early days, the Yacht Club now includes a restaurant, and always lots of fun.
Who knows – if an earthquake ever sends California into the ocean one day, the Yacht Club could end up as beach front property!