Aquapalooza 2009 at Lake Martin proved to be a huge success.
I will admit to some head scratching in the time leading up to the event. How would all those people be shuttled to boats? Would there be enough anchor room? Would there be enough police?
Russell Marine, Sea Ray, the Marine Police, and Alan Jackson all delivered on a great Lake Martin experience. It truly lived up to the hype of the biggest party ever on the water at Lake Martin.
Sure, the lines were long for the shuttle boats. Sure, there were hundreds of swimmers in the way if you were boating up and down the lanes. Towards the end of the afternoon you needed someone in the front of the boat to yell “Move!” Sure, traffic was congested when everyone left after the Alan Jackson show. But all in all, it was very well done, and very safe considering the huge numbers of people that showed up.
As I said above, Russell, Sea Ray, and Alan Jackson deserve a lot of credit. But I will submit that Lake Martin Dock Company should be right in there deserving some praise, for three reasons:
1. They worked (almost) round the clock for weeks setting up the intricate anchor system that literally kept the flotilla together. They also supplied much of the barges, marine equipment, and infra structure.
2. The Love Shack! – see the above pic. Larry Bain and Sharon Johnston had the most creative and festively decorated spot to watch the concert. They had an old covered floating dock that they transformed into a fun, shady party structure. The Love Shack was complete with plants, Smith & Hawken lounge furniture, a gas grill, and a port o potty (with shoji-esque modesty screening). It was a watermark for everyone at Aquapalooza, as in “go to the Love Shack, hang a right, and we’re the fourth boat on the right.”
3. Hospitality – Larry and Sharon and family were kind enough to have my wife and I on board for the day. It was so nice! We are in their debt.
We had to leave before Alan Jackson played. We were sad to go but didn’t want to burn our kid sitters out.
I must say that my favorite act was Jypsi. They were a young band, were yankees, and looked like the B-52s mashed up with the White Stripes. Looks deceived. They played some mean, fast, crisp bluegrass. I was loving it. When they cut into Muleskinner’s Blues, I got chill bumps in the ninety degree weather. I think even my Kentucky buddies would have approved.
At the risk of hurting Sea Ray’s feelings, I submit that the best professional pics of Aquapalooza were taken by Kenneth Boone. Kenneth (known around town as “Mr. Perfect”) is the newspaper baron in Alex City, and is one of the best photographers I have the pleasure of knowing. He has outstanding aerial photos, band pics, and the best collection of crowd photos that I have seen. See below for the link, sorry I can’t figure out how to embed the slide show:
There are tons of amateur photos of Aquapalooza on the web. More being added every day. The best collection of them that are outside of social networks are posted on Bruce Pate’s Lake Martin dot com.
Aquapalooza Lake Martin Video:
Here’s a quick link to the search results for Aquapalooza Lake Martin on Youtube
Also below here is my video from the Love Shack:
and also one that Palmer (you can hear her laughing at me) shot of me getting interviewed by CMT. My (dwindling list of) friends are already sick of hearing about it, and I am sure that I will not make the final edit, but here it goes:
By the way, if you still have not totally lost respect for me from that goofy interview,
and you are interested in Lake Martin waterfront real estate– please contact me. I would love to help you!