Mini-COTV Goes to Heaven in a C-7
After a larger group attended the 2013 version of Corvettes West’s Big Bear Bash in 95 degree heat, only three couples committed to 2014’s annual get together. Dan and Kathy Hedges and Rob and Daryl Weber drove up on Thursday so they could participate in the Friday morning car show and Bob and Betty Wells arrived mid-day Friday. Of course, the weather was much more accommodating, reaching only the mid-80s on Saturday and cooling nicely for the evening festivities on the outdoor patio. This year the host hotel was the Robinhood Resort as the Marina increased their asking price for both rooms and facilities. This worked very well as all the meals had always been catered by the Robinhood’s restaurant, Nottingham’s Tavern and the owner, Charlie, even built a new volleyball court on adjacent property just for the event. What more could you ask!
Rob and Daryl took advantage of the pleasant weather to do their morning walk along Big Bear Blvd in search of a Japanese-Mexican fusion restaurant they had read about after Rob had cleaned the car from the Thursday drive up. The car show, which was a nice 30 car event, was held in the parking lot between the main building of the hotel and the Wishing Well annex and was really pleasant, except for the pine sap on the cars by day’s end. We had a lot of walk-by traffic from vacation visitors to Big Bear Lake as the cars were visible from Pine Knot Avenue, the main drag of what they call the Village. Among the cars on display were a group from Tacoma who made the BBB a target for a two-week road trip. After the show, lunch seemed to be in order because breakfast had been lost in the walking and car cleaning. By that time, Bob and Betty were there and settled in.
Since the entry fee for the weekend included unlimited wine and beer, we were all pretty relaxed and took short walks around the Village before getting ready for the Friday pasta and salad dinner. We had ongoing entertainment by Bob Gulley who has toured with Bill Medley of the Righteous Brothers and who will be performing with him in
Big Bear on August 9th. After dinner, Corvettes West debuted a new event, Corvette Trivia. Any club who wanted to could field a team of three to compete in this trivia contest. Since it was the first time they had done this, it came off with mixed results. Imagine 10 teams or 30 people who have been taking advantage of the free wine and beer offer for some hours all trying to answer multiple choice questions by holding up flags lettered A-D.
Dan and Kathy love games and they got Rob to be their 3rd team member as Bob, Betty and Daryl know little to nothing about Corvette trivia. Based on the final scores, Dan, Kathy and Rob know only a little more than that and COTV did not make a very strong showing, winning neither gold medals or the perpetual trophy.
Finally, the Car Show and volleyball trophies were handed out with theHedges winning 1st place in their class.
Friday was Autocross day and after a great and early breakfast the Webers headed out to the airport to set up the shade and chairs in the best vantage point they could find, tying their pop-up to that of John and Jack Seeley of Antelope Valley as we have done a few times now. Last time, John and Rob were close competitors until it was brought to the organizers’ attention that they were the only car in each of their specific class, so they both won 1st in their classes. We have spent time cheering each other on at the NCCC regionals in Las Vegas as well as at Big Bear. Rob and Daryl walked the course and talked to Jay who lays out courses for autocross for NCCC and the SCAA, does the play-by-play and posts the scoring. Dan and Kathy came with their chairs and car and then we were joined by Alan Thompson who arrived at the hotel in time for breakfast and Ray McIntosh who headed straight for the airport.
Our extended shades became a popular place to be for many of the competitors as we were right by the final timing light and the exit of the course. Rob walked the course with the guys and then we all got to do a parade lap before the racing started. Each car got 4 chances to do the 2-lap course. We had a perfect view of times so had a good idea of how everyone improved on each lap. After all the cars had completed their laps, they offered “fun runs” for $2 but by then all the COTV folks were done and ready for lunch. Bob and Betty headed out to try out the Home Tour (although they later confided that it was very disappointing.) Rob and Daryl had margaritas and a nap before dinner. Dan and Kathy did some shopping after their lunch. Ray met his buddy who lives up there for lunch and Alan headed home.
Dinner was back on Nottingham’s patio and we were joined by Allen Morris, the Regional Executive for NCCC who Dan and Kathy have known for years. We enjoyed some of his inside stories and he and Rob found lots of common ground as he is also an executive for the NHRA. We will probably see him at Hot August Nights as well. Bob Gulley entertained us while we ate our choice of tri-tip, chicken breast or salmon, with salad, bread and mashed potatoes and finished with carrot cake. Of course, the beer and wine continued to flow.
They then announced the Autocross Winners and Dan Hedges and Rob Weber took home trophies for 1st in their respective classes – pretty good for such a small group.
The finishing touch was the raffle. We all wanted the grand prize of $1000 in 10 x $100 bills proved by Tom Bell Chevrolet, but instead Kathy won an inflatable queen size bed and Daryl got a car parts gift certificate and a car cleaning products basket. The $1000 did not come home to COTV.
Sunday, Dan and Kathy went on the poker rally and the Wells and the Webers headed down the hill and home. Daryl had to carry the basket on her lap since the car was full of pop-ups, chairs and all the paraphernalia that goes with car shows. Thank heavens they don’t have a convertible like the Hedges! The Wells had more room for raffle prizes, but no luck this year after their big win in 2013.
2015 brings Corvettes West’s 33rd version of the Big Bear Bash – probably around the end of June, depending on what the airport can do for autocross. Maybe they will have all the wrinkles ironed out of the Corvette Trivia game. We sure hope so!
Join your Friends for a weekend of fun in a beautiful location in June of 2015!