The 33rd Annual
BIG BEAR BASH
Dan & Kathy Hedges
2nd Place Class C1-C2
Rob & Daryl Weber
2nd Place Class C6
Autocross 1st Place Class C2
Autocross 1st Place Class C4
Autocross 1st Place Class C6 ZR1-C7 Z06
(And Yes, The King Was There)
2015 Big Bear Bash …With a Side of Ash
Even the best laid plans of a very good organization can be threatened by Mother Nature, as we found out this year when the Lake Fire broke out a week or so before Corvettes West’s 33rd annual Big Bear Bash. They are a resilient group, as are all of the attendees, and the show went on, with just a few changes.
Because this was indeed the 33rd event, it was dubbed Big Bear Bash 33 1/3 and the theme throughout the weekend was rock ‘n roll, very appropriate for a bunch of Corvette owners of a certain age. Attendance from COTV was limited to a repeat of 2014, with the Hedges (accompanied by early COTV members, Norm and Susie Parmley), the Wells and the Webers, and a short visit from Alan Thompson for Autocross on Saturday morning. We all arrived on Thursday afternoon and checked into the event and then our various homes for the weekend, the Wells and the Webers at the Robinhood Resort and the Hedges and Parmleys at another venue where the guys could smoke their cigars in peace. Dinner was on our own, so both the Wells and Webers went to the Peppercorn Grille, but at different times.
Friday is Car Show day and the event had been moved to the afternoon instead of the morning, so we had a good showing. Attendees who had cleaned their cars on Thursday afternoon, found them covered in fire ash Friday morning. So all 28 cars participating started the day at the same level. There were more C7s than anything else, including several ZO6s and even a white 2016 with blue interior, which had been driven cross country by John Wakefield, the Interior Quality Control Manager from the plant in Bowling Green. He is a friend of Janet Curran, and she had invited him to come out, show off the car before it was actually available and then give us a little presentation on Friday night. The car show probably started before it’s official time and ended earlier than it’s official closing time as all the cars were ready by 1pm and horseshoes started at 3pm, dragging a lot of the participants away from the car show.
Friday night’s dinner, the pasta buffet, was held on the outside patio with a series of light showers, which did nothing to wet anyone’s appetite or enthusiasm. Awards were given for horseshoes and the car show. COTV had a decent showing with Dan Hedges and Rob Weber receiving plaques for 2nd Place in their respective classes and Norm Parmley getting one as well. Then we had John Wakefield’s presentation, followed by Q & A. After that it was the 2nd Annual Trivia Contest. Last year Dan, Kathy and Rob participated but no one from COTV was in the mood to embarrass themselves for a second year, so we all just drifted off to bed.
One of the major changes due to the fire situation was that the autocross on Saturday morning had been moved from the Big Bear Airport, because it was the staging area for the fire helicopters, to the parking lot at Snow Valley. Breakfast at the Robinhood started at 6:30am for those who wanted to use their free meal tickets. It was a slightly longer drive to the venue and the surface of the parking lot was not as well paved as the airport, but the general consensus was that it was a better course. Jayson had laid it out on Friday and had again got a group form UC San Diego to act as course workers, as he was going to have a second larger group on the course on Sunday. COTV was joined by Alan Thompson and everyone made a very good showing on a fast course with room for acceleration. The course was .5 mi long! It was not necessary to do two rounds of the course, because the space was much larger, and the times across the board were very fast. Janet Curran had organized everything so well that more than 45 cars in both the experienced mens’ group and the novice men’s/womens’ group were finished in plenty of time to offer $2 fun runs for those who wanted more, before we had to head back to Big Bear for those who were signed up for the afternoon Funkhana.
Non-participants had a whole afternoon for lunch, walks, naps and socializing before dinner at 6:30pm. Those who wanted to do the drive around the Lake left at 5pm. The organizing group had moved dinner inside to the upstairs banquet room because rain was forecast. Of course, there was no rain once that was done, but we had a boisterous time in the dining room. Dinner was a choice of tri-tip, chicken and salmon, with side salad, mashed potatoes, vegetables and rolls. The open bar with free wine and beer that had started Saturday at 3pm, was still going strong; the rock and roll music was on; and raffle tickets were still being sold. After the meal, the awards for Autocross were given and Dan Hedges, Alan Thompson, Rob Weber and, yes, Norm Parmley, came away winners. There was a costume contest for those in the theme appropriate outfits and of course, Elvis won in the men’s category. While all this was going on, they were drawing numbers for the raffle prizes.
Sunday morning was time for the either the Poker Rally or departure. The Hedges and Parmleys played poker and the Webers (with a full car due to Daryl’s winning of a creeper and work light in the raffle) and the Wells headed home. Everyone has already got their reservations in for 2016. Why don’t you join us?