Off to the races

City to release details of summer event Thursday

Photos from Facebook Pictured is a boat in an offshore speedboat racing event in North Carolina in August 2017. A similar event is planned for this summer in Dunkirk.

The city of Dunkirk’s big summer event will again focus on the city’s waterfront and attract a huge crowd, according to Mayor Willie Rosas. However, this year will focus more on the water than the air.

The mayor reported specific details will be available during a press conference Thursday, but in the meantime, he gave a few details.

“Since September of last year, we knew we would have difficulty bringing the air show back here for the third year in a row. So we started working on a different plan and we’ve been working very hard to try to bring this event. This event will be even bigger than the air show. … It’s a nationally recognized event and televised by NBC Sports nationally and shown internationally. We’re very proud to be able to bring this to our community. We are working with many different partners, including the county and the state as well as other sponsors. All of that pertinent information will be brought out at the press conference on Thursday,” Rosas added.

This event will replace the keystone summer event of the air show, held the past two Fourth of July weekends.

“It will be held the third week of August. This is too big of an event to do on the Fourth of July weekend. The anticipation is they are going to need well over 600 rooms for this event and they’re planning on using a radius of 30 miles for this event. So we’re anticipating the whole county will benefit from this. Again, huge event that should bring many tourists and people and we’re very excited,” Rosas said.

The OBSERVER first reported on the event last month when the city began soliciting donations. According to the website, these boats are the biggest and fastest on the water, reaching speeds in excess of 160 mph. The events have drawn thousands of spectators at beaches across the country and Dunkirk hopes to see the economic impact of that locally.

“All of the information will be brought out at the conference. Since I can remember we haven’t had a boat race here in a very long time, but we’re looking forward to it and I’m really excited about it. We’ve worked very hard to get to this point where we can make this announcement. Again, the producers are supposed to be flying in Thursday to do this press conference. We’re still working on soliciting some more funding for it, but we’re at a point now where we feel confident we can raise the funds,” Rosas explained.

The event has been advertised to potential donors as family friendly and coinciding with the city’s Beach Bash celebration.