Monday, September 27, 2010

Meteorological misfortunes

Saturday morning we met at Bob Evans for breakfast then cruised to the Zoan Baptist Church show in Fredericksburg, VA. This is the fourth annual deal for the church and their major sponsor, Big Foot Speed & Custom. The show always has a nice mix of new and old vehicles and Saturday they had 76 vehicles registered and a few that didn’t! The event has always been attendee centric….they want the entrants to have a good time, what a concept! They have crafty things for sale that the Princess says she needed. They sold tickets for a cake walk? And she “won” a large box of homemade brownies and another one with white chocolate chip & nut cookies. The Princess brought me the container of cookies….she is always looking out for me….making sure I consume the correct nourishment ….cookies are one of the 7 major food groups….right? The only thing was that my cookie container was broke, all the cookies just leaked out before I got home! The Princess says I’m not being truthful about where the cookies went….I think that little short curly blonde person told on me, he was giving me a real slow look over, I don’t think I trust him! There was also good food for sale and clean restrooms. The show would have been perfect except for the heat….the weather guessers said it was going to be 85 degrees….I think we set another heat record, I think I could hear the grass crackle as it was going from green to dried out brown! Yes it was a 6 bottles of water and two bottles of Gatorade day!

The organizers gave out the awards then we packed up and headed for the cruise at Bruster’s in N. Stafford. We decided to eat at a nearby restaurant after we arrived so by the time we got back to the cars it was dark! It looked like it was going to be a normal evening at Bruster’s with about 50-60 cars coming and going. The Princess and I passed out some flyers then left. The heat had drained us and we needed to be up early Sunday to help at a show up north….

Sunday we got up at 5Am and started to get ready for the day….I loaded the hot rods with all the Wounded Warrior Project stuff and drinks and ice and a little table and way too much stuff for two coupes to carry then went inside to consult my weather sites. We knew it was forcasted to rain on Sunday but the timing was a mystery. As I tried to get a consensus from the different sites it became clear to me that the rain was going to go around us and not be a problem till 5PM or so. So about 6:30 Ramona called me to check on which vehicles we were going to take to the show and I said….The hot rods of course! After the conversation I thought maybe I should check outside….it was raining so hard it was running down the driveway! So much for the weather guesser’s prognostication! I switched all the stuff into my truck and we headed out with our mule! We were to help with registration at the PWC show in Occoquan, VA. The show was to benefit Wounded Warrior Project so we were going to be there one way or the other! You can check out the pictures and see us standing around, under the canopies, watching the rain run off the edge of the canopy…. Steve, the show organizer and decision maker, was struggling with what to do. Some people started lining up at the entrance with show cars….in the rain. Some people had come from 155 miles away! Around10 AM it started looking like we may get a reprieve from the rain so Steve didn’t want to call the show….we waited…. We started registering cars and they were setting up their deal….in the rain. At noon Steve decided to call the show….we had 34 cars registered….this show usually has 200+. He had a rain date for the following Sunday so he gave all the participants the choice of coming back next Sunday and get free admission with their registration or if they couldn’t come back they could get a Top 50 trophy, about half took the trophies!

Having put on a few deals myself I know what a frustrating thing it is to call a show after you start it….it never works very well and some people are always unhappy with the outcome. The venue owners are disappointed because they didn’t get the income they were expecting for that day. The sponsors didn’t get the exposure they wanted, the food vendors had to take the food they bought back somewhere! Where does that food go? The other vendors spent money to be there and didn’t have any customers. The participants cleaned and polished for this show and got rained on. The club mustered their members, with their many and varied conflicting personal schedules, to be there and help manage the event. They still had to go through most of their work, setting up tents, setting out the door prizes and trophies….but they didn’t get to complete the cycle. I think that all things considered, Steve made the correct and fair decision for as many of the entities as possible. So next Sunday we go back to Occoquan Park to do it again and see what happens! Oh yeah….around 1:30 the sky cleared and the sun came out….for the rest of the day! Go figure!

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