Powerful things happen when people come together.

Our Mission is to make boating, marine education, and environmental stewardship affordable and accessible to all.

We are a community center offering boating, marine education, and environmental stewardship opportunities to residents and visitors to the Pleasant Bay region. We are dedicated to serving all members of the community including those with physical, developmental and cognitive disabilities, as well as under-served families and at-risk youth.

Pleasant Bay Community Boating is a non-profit 501(c)(3) educational organization.

Our Story

In 2003, John Dickson was a teacher at Harwich High School. Alarmed by a rash of teen suicides and concerned about the lack of recreational opportunities for local kids, he wanted to offer a productive and positive alternative.
John was joined by a group of volunteers who believed in the idea of making boating affordable and accessible to residents of the Pleasant Bay communities. These local boaters – drawn from members of Chatham, Stage Harbor, Orleans, Stone Horse, and Monomoy Yacht Clubs – believed that the privilege of boating shouldn’t be reserved for the privileged.
Our group had all the ambition in the world but few resources. In fact, we didn’t even have a permanent address – just a small pick-up truck that served as an office. But, as word spread about PBCB and its mission, the community joined our efforts: area residents donated six Daysailers and Nauset Marine contributed three 13-foot Boston Whalers. In 2004, PBCB offered the first of what would become thousands of community sailing lessons off Jack Knife Cove, a small public beach in Chatham.
In 2006 we received a donation of seven Flying Scots from Southern Massachusetts Sailing Association with an agreement to host regional U.S. Sailing Association-sanctioned competitions. By the next year, we broadened our community offerings even further to include sailing programs for students with developmental challenges and for youngsters from local working families.

Finally, in 2014, and after years of searching for an appropriate site, we recognized a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to acquire the former McClennen estate, a magnificent 3.6-acre parcel on Pleasant Bay, and established a permanent home at long last – appropriately enough, on the exact spot where Brewster, Orleans, and Harwich come together.
With this new campus, PBCB is becoming more than its founders ever dreamed possible – a community center for boating, learning and caring about our shared treasure, Pleasant Bay.

Thanks to incredible support from donors and volunteers, we now have:

  • 3.75 acre waterfront facility with parking, program and office space, and two boat shops
  • Floating Marine Science Classroom
  • A fleet of over 80 boats
  • Retired much of our debt and significantly strengthened infrastructure

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts to every single individual who has contributed in one way or another to make this happen.  Our community needs access to Pleasant Bay, and together we can steward this resource!