Tuesday, May 28, 2013

The Start of The BIG Race!

They say you should never post on social media when you're leaving town, so on Thursday, I prepared several posts and scheduled them for each day I'd be gone.  Friday morning Hubby and I packed up the Element and headed northwest to Humboldt County to meet up with The Wild Child and enjoy our first ever experience of the Kinetic Sculpture Grand Championship race.

The race started on Saturday at around noon at the Arcata Plaza--Arcata is where Humboldt State University is, a little north of Eureka.  When the kids were young, we'd camp and vacation in the area, and we visited the Kinetic Sculpture Museum and the art studio of Hobart Brown, one of the two artists who first dreamed up the whole thing.  But, due to one thing or another, we'd never been able to attend the race itself, a three-day event spanning Memorial Day weekend.  Now that the Wild Child is attending Humboldt State, we figured it was finally the perfect opportunity.  The only thing that could have made it better is if Soccer Son and his Lovely Wife had been able to attend too, but they had other plans and other commitments.  Maybe next year!

So, the first day, all of the "sculptures" checked in, lined up, and after whistle blew, they completed three circuits around the plaza.  They then headed off on the rest of the three-day route that covered dirt, sand, water, mud, and asphalt.  The first day included traveling across the sand dunes, down Dead Man's Drop (a sand "cliff"), and ended in Eureka.  In order to be in the race, not only must the vehicles be artistic and inventive, but they need to be able to travel over many terrains.  Want to see some of them?  These are photos from the first day in Arcata Plaza.

Banana Split, of course!

Velo Crab

HMS Lady Luck

War and Death

Duane Flatmo's Dragon--this one breathes fire!  I have other photos I'll have to show you.  The artist who built the dragon, Duane Flatmo, has designed most of the race posters over the years up until the past few.  He's also responsible for many murals/public art pieces in the Eureka area.  Fantastic stuff!

Gone Fishin'

Here's a two-fer:  June's New Shoe and Athlete's Foot

Hell on Wheels

Inspector 420--they get a lot of mileage out of the "dead ant" song (think the Pink Panther theme)

Pac Man--the cherries are super clever!



Toon Taxi (with Inspection 420 in the background)

Spruce Deuce

Visualize Whirled Peas

The three of us had a great time checking out these vehicles and collecting the buttons and flags some of them were passing out.  You can see additional entrants, their vehicles, video of the sand crossing, and updates HERE.  We weren't at the finish line for Day 1, but I understand Visualize Whirled Peas came in first.  Tomorrow I'll share photos of some of the "sculptures" launching off the dock in Eureka and into Humboldt Bay.


Marei said...

I lived in Eureka for 15 years (LOVED it...and my fantastic 1916 house....sigh) and headed to the plaza every year for the start of the race. Thanks for sharing these photos. Made me feel like I was back home for a couple minutes.

Kim said...

Looks like a lot of fun! Very creative!

Anonymous said...

Those were great - thanks for sharing!