Come one, come all to the best and only winter water-skiing event this January — the Eskimo Escapades. Despite freezing winds, frozen water and the fact that they will be wearing nothing but a swimsuit or wetsuit, on Jan. 13 many brave souls will attempt to water ski, tube and participate in other recreational activities in a half-mile area to raise money for the Dream Connection and the Patricia Neal International Recreation Cooperative charities.
These charities are asking students and local area residents to raise money through pledges. There will be awards given out to those who raise more than $100, $200 and $500, as well as a special award for the person or group that raises the most money.
“We certainly appreciate everything the Eskimo Escapades do for us,” Dream Connection board member Rob McConkey said.
Inner-tubes, water-skis and wake-boards are all welcome, or even just a swimsuit and bare feet. The event will begin at Volunteer Landing — next to Calhoun’s by the river — around 10 a.m. Saturday morning and will end at 3 p.m.
“We all believe...in the outcomes that we see,” Al Kaye, a member of the Patricia Neal charities, said. “It’s no surprise, since many of the volunteers who help with the Eskimo Escapades also help out with the charities that it helps. If they can contribute their time and energy to such an event, you can at least go there and make their time worthwhile.”
To register for this event, go to the Eskimo Escapades’ Web site, http://www.eskimoescapades.com, and click the registration link. From there you can print off and fill out the USA Water Ski form and the Eskimo Escapades form. You must also pay $10 to become a guest member of USA Water Ski for insurance purposes.
Parking will be provided at the City Council Building across from the Landing, and changing rooms are located at the Landing itself. Everyone who joins the half-mile water-skiing event will be towed by club members driving either a Malibu, Correct Craft or Master Craft boat.
In addition, a limited but generous supply of wetsuits will be provided for those who arrive early enough.
Furthermore, since freezing is a real possibility — skiers have returned before with icicles in their hair — everyone who gets too cold can sit in a warm tub to “thaw out.”