With her decision to join the Englewood Beach Waterfest/Offshore Powerboat Association World Championships (November 17-20) in Southwest Florida, held earlier this week, event organizers are wrapping up details of a community-wide campaign dubbed “Racing to Recovery.” The initiative is “focused on covering operational costs and providing support to local residents in the wake of Hurricane Ian,” according to a press release sent out by the Englewood Beach Waterfest organization this morning.
The Englewood Beach Waterfest OPA World Championships are underway – and with it the event’s “Racing To Recover” fundraising program. Photos from the 2021 OPA/Englewood Beach event by Pete Boden, copyright Take 2 exciting pictures.
“We activated our marketing and web teams to set up a custom fundraiser page,” said Elaine Miller, past President and current Waterfest Board member, in the press release. “Any individual or company interested in supporting this community event can donate funds to help cover the cost of operations so that local residents have free entry to the races.
“We are providing a portal to people outside of Hurricane Ian-affected areas to give locals a day or two to step away from the cleanup and repairs that caused the devastation,” she added.
In addition to the crowning of their own world champions, the event produced by OPA will also be crowned American Power Boat Association and Union International Motornautics World Champion in the Stock V, Mod V and Bracket classes.
Offshore racing world championships in the V-Bottom classes will be decided next month in Englewood Beach, Florida.
“The overwhelming support of the OPA, local business owners, our event ambassadors, community leaders, and county and local officials encouraged and motivated us to hold this year’s race event,” said Steve Gardiner, President of the Englewood Beach Board of Directors. “People in our community have truly pulled together and shown tremendous resilience and determination to bring Englewood and the surrounding areas back, and we are committed to ensuring that every local resident who wishes to attend this year’s event has the opportunity to do so .”
The action at Englewood Beach begins with testing on Friday, followed by two full days of racing on Saturday and Sunday.
Ray LaBadie, First Vice President of the Waterfest Board of Directors and a key liaison between his fellow organizers and the Offshore Powerboat Association, said, “We have seen and heard the overwhelming support from our racing teams who love to race on the water here in Englewood Beach. The location and facility is ideal and the welcoming environment of residents and businesses really sets us apart from other venues.”
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