Tuesday, May 16, 2006


D.O.M. - About the Annual (part two)

Continuing on from another post about this same topic, I was going to describe the awards portion of the D.O.M. Annual. But first I neglected to talk about two other race events that have evolved over the years. One is the Blind Man’s Race, and the other is the Go Cart Race. Neither of these races are as traditional as the other 4 that I previously discussed, but are just as fun. In fact, the Blind Man’s Race is probably the funniest “spectator” event the club has.

These two events are held on Sunday after the Scramble event concludes. Both races take place on the same open field course as was used for Saturday’s events, and is modeled after Barrel Race: (1.) The Blind Man’s Race – has been around for about 8 years, and allows 2 people on 1 vehicle with the driver BLIND-FOLDED. The passenger tells the driver which way to turn around each trash barrel. The type of vehicle doesn’t matter – most people do it on quads, but I’ve seen pick-up trucks, golf carts (yes, golf carts), and go carts. No time is added if you hit, miss, or even run over a barrel. However, of those who successfully navigate all 3 barrels, the fastest time wins. This event is a blast just to watch!

(2.) The Go Cart Race – now in its 2nd year of existence, and was established because more club members have been buying go carts for their kids. Go carts cannot compete in any of the other events. The Go Cart Race is exactly like the Barrel Race – 1 rider navigates around all 3 trash barrels as fast as they can.

Now on to the D.O.M. Annual awards ceremony. This takes place on Sunday evening, after all the events are completed. It takes time to tabulate all the event winners. The finish times of each person in each event is compared the others who competed in the same event – to establish a first, second, and third place. These “placings” are assessed points in order to establish the first, second, and third place of each class. Ribbons are awarded to each person that places first, second, and third in each event. For the child classes (Pee-Wee, Brats, Girls, and Boys) trophies are awarded for first, second, and third place in each class. All children who participated will receive something, so if they don’t actually place in a particular race, they will still get a participation ribbon.

The most coveted trophy is awarded to a boy with the highest points in the Boys Class. This trophy is named after Dirk Harbor, who was a member many years ago. Dirk loved riding motorcycles, but tragically passed away from cancer when he was still a boy. I never met Dirk; I joined the club long after his passing, but only know of him from the trophy presentation in his name at the Annual. One of our long-time members usually tells the story of Dirk Harbor, and this portion of the awards ceremony is usually very emotional for those in attendance.

The adults only receive ribbons for placing first, second, and third in each race event. Adults don’t receive trophies for their high-points achievements in each class, with two exceptions: The overall high-points adult is awarded the Harry Essres trophy – named after an original member of the club, one of the original Dirty Old Men. The adult over the age of 40 with the highest points is awarded the Old-Timers trophy.

The next part of the awards ceremony recognizes club spirit and effort. A trophy called the Stein Award is awarded by the club King and Queen to a member of their choice. The club King and Queen have the responsibility of managing the club treasury, writing and mailing the club newsletter, dealing with membership (collecting dues from new or existing members), choosing ride locations, planning all activities at the rides (pot lucks, raffles, arranging for club apparel, etc., etc.). This takes a lot of work and requires a lot of help from other members. So, once a year the current King and Queen recognize a worthy recipient of this trophy. And yes, there is a stein on top of the trophy.

The last part of the D.O.M. Annual awards ceremony is the crowning of the new King and Queen. One of the other responsibilities the K & Q have is to seek out and find a replacement. The term of a K & Q is one riding season – from Annual to Annual. Some K’s & Q’s have taken on consecutive reigns, and others have passed on the torch to someone else after their reign. But since it’s a surprise to the rest of the club, the announcement of the new (or continuation of) K & Q is the last order of FUN business and closes out the ceremony.

Memorial Day (Monday) of the Annual weekend is when everyone packs up and goes home – until the next riding season begins in September. Drive safely!

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