Lake Mirror Classic in Lakeland

  • Thread starter SplitPersonality
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SplitPersonality

Guest
Ahoy all Amphicar owners - The 9th Annual Lake Mirror Classic Car show is
Saturday October 18th

The actual show is being billed as the 2008 Mercedes-Benz Lake Mirror
Classic October 17-19
However, the principal show date and the day the Amphicars participate is on
Saturday the 18th.

Those of you who have attended or participated previously know that it is a
premier event and has the principal showcased vehicles located around the lake
itself with the balance situated in adjacent areas outside the actual lake
area. Altogether, they expect several hundred cars and 10 to 20,000
spectators. If the weather is good as it has been for the four previous times the
Amphicars have participated, there will be a lot of beautiful cars to be seen.

Ford Heacock, of Heacock Insurance is the Chairman of the Lake Mirror
Classic. I have been in contact with him by telephone and e-mail concerning mainly
the Ramp situation as well as where the Amphicars would be situated and
whether we would be able to easily take them swimming other than at the special
post lunch "Swim In." Those of you who have had your Amphicars there at the
previous shows know that for the first 3 events, there was a portable
improvised ramp which was not very satisfactory and required help from show
personnel to go in and especially to be pulled out. Last year, the city of Lakeland
installed what we had expected to be a new ramp on the north side of the
lake. It was, in fact, new, but instead of a solid ramp, they put in two 18 inch
wide strips which required careful aiming and a little luck not to drift to
one side or the other on exiting the lake or the wheels on one side would miss
the ramp. A bigger problem, it turned out, was that the ramps did not extend
quite deep enough in the water which situation was significantly exacerbated
by the lower lake levels that have become a problem throughout Florida in
the last 4 or 5 years. At the deep ends of the ramp, a load of relatively
large chunks of clinker or broken concrete was placed which were very sharp and
bit into the rear tires when trying to gain traction coming out and if the
Amphicar drifted slightly to one side, the bottom of the hull was capable of
scraping on the very coarse chunks. For the boat trailers, this was not a
problem, as the trailer could be directed down the 2 ramps which are about 42
inches apart with no problem and then pulled up by the tow vehicle. One thing
which has helped the situation is that this year for the first time in several
years, we have had significant amounts of rainfall and the lake levels have
risen all over the state. In some areas, as you are doubtless aware, the rain
has been as much as 2 feet in a matter of a few days, principally from
Tropical Storm Fay causing rivers to overflow their banks and some areas remain
flooded at this date. North of Orlando where we live, we had 19 inches in one
week alone.

For any of you who are unaware, Lake Mirror virtually never has any boats
allowed in it. I believe this Lake Mirror Classic is the only time that
watercraft are allowed in at all and that is just our Amphicars and 3 or 4 Antique
wooden Chris Craft Runabouts or similar boats. Consequently, this is only a
problem one day in the year and really only for the Amphicars. However, our
vehicles are unique enough and enhance the show atmosphere of this premier
event sufficiently that they are quite anxious to have us participate. Ford
Heacock, the chairman, has been working hard to overcome the ramp problem and the
City Parks department is going to move the coarse fill away from the base of
the 2 ramps. They then plan to dump sand in that area and put some kind of
mat either of metal or fiberglass such as is used for the Amphibious Seaplane
ramp at another lake in Lakeland. Such a mat has, Ford told me, been in place
now for several years at this other ramp and has worked well. However, of
course, the planes do not require traction for their wheels. If the ramp works
well, they plan on the Amphicars being exhibited until the 1 PM Splash In
after lunch. Then we can take them in and out at will from a location near the
ramps which is of course something we enjoy doing and the public is very
anxious to be able to watch.

Any of you who have attended a previous event are aware that it features
some rare and beautiful cars including the 100 or more "special" cars. These
include Duesenbergs, Rolls Royces, Gull Wing Mercedes, a Batmobile two years ago
and of course our Amphicars. With background music and special touches such
as the unique delivery of the lunches to the participants last year by
uniformed waiters heralded by a bagpiper, the event is acquiring a reputation as a
classy event worth attending.

The Lake Mirror Classic is a charitable event and registrants receive a
"Goody Bag" as well as a worthwhile or unique souvenier. Registration can be on
line this year on the internet: _www.lakemirrorclassic.com_
(http://www.lakemirrorclassic.com)

If you have any questions, call Ford Heacock's secretary, Ginny Askew at
(863) 683-2228

I hope to see a lot of you there. Victor (Capt.Splash) Nelson with the
1967 "Split Personality"



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