The DCB Regatta is typically the end of the fall Regattas that I have always coined "Regatta Row" and to put it bluntly we really are saving the best for last from an event stand point. The DCB has always been one of the largest regattas of the season from both an entry standpoint and a crowd for the awards and after party.
(DCB's latest "SuperCat" M-44 featuring Merc 1550's parked next to an M41)
Two years ago and their official 25th Anniversary regatta the convention rooms at the Nautical were literally bursting at the seems with standing room only along the walls. This year would mark their 27th year in business and things show absolutely no sign of slowing down, point of fact this particular regatta had more entries then they have ever had before! With 68 Paid Entries and over 300 patrons (not including friends that come down to the banquet) once again found the convention center at capacity. While it wasn't standing room only, the Nautical did make it clear that they had reached the limit on not only the amount of food that could be served, but they had also reached the maximum amount of seating they could place in the large building.
(DCB misses no details when it comes to their dock displays)
What separates the DCB Regatta from all of the others is the amount of vendor and business partner attendance that are in the crowd. At most regattas people will often donate items, or prizes, but rarely attend the banquets themselves. With the DCB regatta when you look around the crowd is a cross section of the who's who in the Lake Havasu marine industry. It also tends to attract a lot of "friends" of the participants and vendors themselves adding to the crowd size.
(The Poker Run for the DCB Regatta is one of the more impressive events that happens on Lake Havasu! From the latest Hardware they have built to where they started, everybody is on the water and having fun)
The reason why this year was probably the best DCB Regatta I've been to yet was solely dependent on the "vibe" of the crowd this year. That's one of those weird things that as a guy that puts on events you can never really "control", at best maybe you can influence it to a certain degree. For some reason this year everybody was extremely laid back, and from what I could see were having the time of their lives. Todd did a great job MC'ing the event (which can also often set the tone), and this year he looked very relaxed and was joking and interacting with the crowd quite a bit.
(Gary Lange Jr. at the reception party)
(Stacy Johnson & Kelli Krause getting ready to go up in the RDP Helicopter during the poker run)
(Another helicopter that was out for the DCB Regatta. Todd Taylor was shooting for the event and Speed Boat Magazine out of this one)
(I would like to thank Chris Cheek from Big Blue Air & Gary Lange for letting us rent the Turbine Helicopter for the event!)
After the awards most the people went outside to the courtyard and had drinks at the large bar they had setup outside (nice touch by the way!) for 30 minutes or so. As the crowd started to disperse, a kind of surprise turn of events happened when pretty much everybody from the DCB camp elected to head out to down town to the Flying X for drinks. It was pretty cool to watch everything from SXS's, oversized tow vehicles like Sport Chassis's, and yes even the infamous Party bus all rolling out of the Nautical and heading up main street. At one point that was a bit of a parade in itself.
I know they put a lot of work into this years event, and Jeff even mentioned the budget to me at one point (holy smokes!), but it really paid off. Everything was first class from the word go, but most importantly it wasn't "pretentious" like some would have expected it to be. It really was a great crowd not only having a great weekend at the regatta, but making the best of a Saturday Night in Havasu with their friends, and that in this writers opinion is what it's all about. Looking forward to attending next years already!
Until then we will see you out on the water!
Written by : RiverDave
Photo's by : Tom Leigh