Edit ModuleShow Tags

Vintage San Diego

New Year's Day plunge


Published:

San Diego Rowing Club 1916

Do you have a vintage photo of
San Diego? Send your pic and story
to erinm@sandiegomagazine.com.

On a chilly 58-degree New Year’s Day in 1916, members of the San Diego Rowing Club gathered at their boathouse in the San Diego harbor to participate in the annual New Year’s Day Plunge. The tradition began in 1900 as a christening ceremony for their first boathouse, at the foot of Fifth Avenue. The event has recurred annually for over a century to this day, and according to former SDRC president Percy A. Rooks, it is “the best cure we know for a New Year’s Day hangover.” SDRC called its original boathouse home for 79 years while the club’s membership soared, and it served as a social meeting place for businessmen and community leaders. An increase in Naval vessel traffic after World War II, however, eventually forced the club to move its headquarters to Santa Clara Point in Mission Bay. But the plunge has always taken place at its original location, now Joe’s Crab Shack.

By The Numbers

  • 1888
    San Diego Rowing Club founded (called Excelsior Rowing and Swim Club until 1891)

  • 12
    Years the club struggled to obtain its own boathouse

  • 13
    Number of SDRC founding members

  •  
  • 1892
    Inspired by SDRC, ZLAC, the oldest women’s rowing club in the nation, was formed

  • 1,200
    Average number of members in the 1930s and ’40s

  • 1934
    San Diego Bay opened up to Naval ships

  •  

1974
Ban on women in rowing lifted as a result of decreased membership during postwar years

 

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

More »Related Stories

Hello, Dolly: The Queen of Country Music Comes to San Diego

Here she comes again! 5 reasons to get your tickets now for the Dolly Parton concert on September 27

(Park)ing Day Transformed Downtown Parking Spots into Public Parks

We explored 8 of them

How Agent Orange Is Still Devastating San Diegans

San Diego vets are still suffering from the toxic herbicide, and struggling to get benefits from the VA
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. 27 Secret San Diego Spots
    From hidden caves to dead bodies beneath a public park, here's our third annual guide to all things hidden and hush-hush
  2. FIRST LOOK: False Idol
    San Diego is now home to a world-class tiki bar—False Idol
  3. Best of San Diego 2016
    Our annual and completely subjective guide to SD’s best
  4. The Chilling Facts About Craft Beer
    Why colder is not always better
  5. FIRST LOOK: Decoy Dockside
    San Marcos gets an ambitious, two-story gastro-lodge on the lake with Decoy Dockside.
  6. Top 10 Off-Site Events during Comic-Con 2016
    No badge, no problem—these happenings are free and open to the public
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Promotions

Win Tickets to Craig Robinson Plus a Hotel and Spa Package

The American Comedy Co. is giving away a hilarious weekend for two

Go Ahead... Ask McMillin!

At McMillin Realty, we are encouraging you to bring us your real estate questions. We will answer these questions….. for free.
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module
Edit Module

Connect With Us:

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Sponsored

Win Tickets to Craig Robinson Plus a Hotel and Spa Package

The American Comedy Co. is giving away a hilarious weekend for two

Go Ahead... Ask McMillin!

At McMillin Realty, we are encouraging you to bring us your real estate questions. We will answer these questions….. for free.
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags