Welcome Home WYC!

It’s been a whirlwind of activity to get the building ready for volunteers to return, and it started on the evening of March 1 with my first building walkthrough since volunteering with JuniorSAIL for their season shutdown. With just a little bit of evening light left, I unlocked the vestibule door with nervous anticipation of what issues I might find.

What a blessing – there were a few places where ceiling tiles show evidence of roof leaks and just two locations where they had fallen and made quite a mess. I walked the building to seek out what steps would be necessary to make certain of volunteer safety. The list is short but crucial and the next day would require a full daylight return trip to begin clearing those two spots and preparing the checklists and contact list for all of the necessary inspections.

Sunday, March 3, I brought a lightweight and able-bodied volunteer to begin the roof repair process. The area immediately surrounding the exit onto the roof has had a thorough soaking – the drains were clogged with mud.

As we began our work, I heard the sound of tires on the pavement in the parking lot and looked over the roof edge to see the harbor security truck parking. The gentleman began to walk toward the door, so I yelled down, “Good afternoon!” He looked up, waved, and smiled and bellowed, “WELCOME HOME!”

Graeme Classen and I carefully removed 3 separate ecosystems of rich compost that were supporting tree sprouts. In one spot, in the Southeast corner above the bar, a small bush had roots dug in 9 feet long into the membrane! We cleared all of the plant life and dirt. I dug out the mud from the drains. After removing a 4 X 6 foot area of material that was like soaked sod, the roof membrane breathed – that was a sign of the areas that would need urgent repair, but it also meant the opportunity to dry. We trimmed the overhanging tree branches and repositioned a temporary expansion joint cover before heading down to ground level to spread the new found compost and mulch around and over exposed tree roots in the landscape.

I cannot wait to be on ground level to visit with the member of harbor security who so cheerfully welcomed us home to the Waukegan Yacht Club and tell him how much it meant.