The Continental Club
The Continental Club was founded in 1961 to offer people of Germanic background a social rallying point in Seattle and to promote and preserve their European cultural heritage. The Continental Club at that time offered discount travel to Europe by renting charter flights for its members. After the airlines were deregulated, inexpensive flights were available to everyone and the travel purpose of the club was no longer needed. Club members continued to gather at frequent events throughout the greater Seattle-Tacoma area and, in 1971, proceeds from the Club were used to purchase property and to build the Berghaus at Hyak, which became a place for families and friends to enjoy time together. In 1973, a dormitory building connected to the day lodge was built to offer a larger sleeping area for its members. Today the Continental Club is open to people of all nationalities and continues to offer a base for numerous winter and summer activities.
Today the Continental Club is considered an active outdoor family-oriented club. The club continues to reflect the European heritage that founded it in its members, but is more reflective of the greater Seattle community.
Currently there are approximately 104 members of the Continental Club. Any person who shows an interest in the Club and its activities may apply for membership. Visit the Application page for more information about becoming a member.
The Club continues to operate the Berghaus entirely on a volunteer basis. There are no paid employees of the club. The Club board of directors consists of up to twelve paying members who volunteer their time.
President: Kaarina Merikaarto
The President is the Chief Executive Officer for the organization. The President presides over the meetings of the club and meetings of the Executive Board.
Acting Vice-President: Jim Garhart
The Vice-President in the event of the President's absence or disability acts on behalf of the President's office and carries out additional duties as the Executive Board assigns.
Secretary: Barbara Curran
The Secretary keeps the minutes of the club member's meetings as well as Executive Board meetings. The Secretary also sends important information to the members on a regular basis.
Treasurer: Geneva Sullivan
The Treasurer receives and safeguards the funds of the club. The Treasurer keeps a full, accurate and complete record and account of the receipts and disbursements belonging to and provided for by the Continental Club.