Plans for a relocated Lake Shootout Meet and Greet are coming together quickly after the Shootout Committee decided recently to move the popular pre-race event from Lake Ozark to the Hillbilly Fairgrounds in Laurie.
The decision to move the event came after the city of Lake Ozark and bar owners on the Strip could not agree to terms of a Temporary Outdoor Consumption Permit. The one-time waiver of the open container law was drafted by City Attorney Roger Gibbons after input from aldermen and city staff.
The announcement that the open container issue had died came at the June 25 board meeting. The decision to move the event to the west side of the lake was announced a few days later.
"We liked the Strip because it had a variety of businesses including bars and restaurants," Shootout coordinator Ron Duggan said. "I had a similar experience in Key West (Fla.), and I wanted to try and duplicate that here. The Strip offered that type of setup."
What he and others did not anticipate was Lake Ozark's open container law. After the first year of the Meet and Greet on the Strip, there were people participating in the event that wanted open containers.
"We'd been working to try to get Lake Ozark to lift the open container law for the event," Duggan explained. "They said they were willing to work with us to try and get that accomplished, but it didn't happen. We had to make a decision."
The Shootout Committee had been considering other locations the last two years, including Osage Beach and Camdenton. Both communities are very interested in hosting the Meet and Greet, but couldn't resolve open container issues in time for this year's event.
"It depends on how it goes this year," he explained.
The intent of the Shootout is primarily to raise money for area fire and rescue departments and charities.
"Ultimately, its about how much money we raise. If we don't raise an amount we feel is necessary, we'll look at ways of tweaking things," Duggan said. "The Mini-Shootout was moved, and we tweaked the Treasure Hunt to bring more interest. We'll tweak things to maximize their potential."
Meet and Greet 2013
The Meet and Greet in Laurie will be held from noon to 10 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 21. That's different from the evening-only Meet and Greet in Lake Ozark in previous years.
The 501(c)3 not-for-profit Lake of the Ozarks Shootout will obtain a Picnic Permit to operate a beer garden in the park.
"We really think this is going to be a neat event this year. It gives everyone a chance to come and go and stay around if they want," Duggan said. "We had a great meeting with Laurie city officials Monday (July 1). They've been really cooperative. We're thrilled to work with them."
Page 2 of 2 - With an all-day event, more families can enjoy the anticipated 80 race boats and rigs that will be set up in the park. There will be dozens of vendors of all types set up in the area. There will be a play area for children including inflatable bounce houses.
"We're looking for vendors," Duggan said. "Anyone who wants to sell food, crafts, merchandise, anything, can send an email to email@example.com."
Vendor spaces are $100.
Camping spaces are also available.
Duggan said more details will emerge as the Aug. 16-25 event grows closer. Actual race days are Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 24-25.
For more details, see lakeoftheozarksshootout.org.