Hey all. Are you building a cart for the September 19th Soapbox Races (and if not, why not!?!) and need some help or advice? Well, ponder no more…
Come to a soapbox cart build party at Nova Motocycles on 2nd Street in Turners this Saturday morning at 10:00. There will be some extra bike parts and small lumber on hand and “experts” who may be helpful.
Over the past nine months I have been contacted by dozens of people about why the derby did not happen in 2014, and will it happen in 2015? Well, the answer to both questions is the same. The Montague Soapbox Derby needs a sponsor: an organization that is willing to be the fiscal agent, and the administrator of the derby.
MCTV was the owner for the first four years of the derby. They took out the insurance, and set up the bank account where all monies went into and came out of. And they were the beneficiary. If there was any profit, it went towards the station's capital needs for things like cameras, etc.
After running it for four years the board of directors and staff of MCTV decided not to hold it the following year, and ultimately to divest themselves of it altogether. It was now time to find a new owner for the derby.
I contacted many organizations in Montague. By March of 2014 it was apparent I was coming up empty, so I called it. No derby that year. I tried one additional organization in January of this year, 2015, but after a month of deliberations, they decided to not pick it up either.
So now I am appealing to the general public, and calling all organizations in Montague. If you enjoyed the derby in the past, or are looking to potentially bring in some money at an annual event, please contact me and let me know if you are interested in being the new owner of this event.
What does it take? At a minimum, you will need to set up a bank account, take out the insurance, and be the official organization associated with the event when meeting with the police department, fire dept, parks and recreation, and the select board. You would also need to build a committee of about seven or eight people, each with active participation in building the event. On the day of the event it takes about 40 volunteers.
I would definitely remain on the planning committee and would act as a consultant to the event, though I do not really want to be the director anymore. I would actually like to race in it for once!
Although MCTV did not fully maximize all the potential income, we did learn many things over the first four years, and now know what it would take to have the event generate several thousand dollars... while providing a day's entertainment for everyone.
A full planning document is available from the homepage of MontagueSoapboxDerby.com.
So, if you have Montague pride, and belong to an organization that has active board and member participation, and are seeking potential new income from an annual event, please contact me at 413-320-5336 about taking on the Montague Soapbox Derby.
Clifford H. Phillips, 50, of 117 Ashfield Road, Buckland, died Friday, Oct. 3, at Baystate Medical Center in Springfield.
He was born in Holyoke, Sept. 29, 1964, the son of Neil and Patricia (Underwood) Phillips.
He was a 1982 graduate of Franklin County Technical School in Turners Falls.
He was an equipment operator for Local Union 98 based in Springfield.
For the past seven years Cliff owned and operated Cliff ’s Smo k in’ Backyard Barbeque in Buckland.
Cliff was a member of the Western MA Rod and Gun Club, the Fraternal Order of Eagles both in Shelburne Falls and the Ashfield (MA) Rod and Gun Club.
An avid snowmobiler he was a member of the Buckland Riders. He also enjoyed deep sea fishing and four-wheeling adventures.
Survivors besides his mother of Buckland include his wife the former Kelly E. Charette whom he married on October 11, 1997; his step-daughter Ashley Sturgeon of Easthampton; his brother John Phillips of Warren, NH; and three grandchildren Willow, Blue and Layla Sturgeon.
There will be calling hours Wednesday evening from 6-8 p.m. at the Smith-Kelleher Funeral Home in Shelburne Falls.
There will be a celebration of life service at a later date to be announced.
It is suggested donations be made to the National Kidney Foundation of MA, RI, NH, & VT, 85 Astor Avenue, Suite 2, Norwood, MA 02062.
Outrageous clothing wanted. Bring to TFRC table at the Derby
RiverCulture is excited to have a table at the Derby! We are seeking donations of outrageous clothing for our CostumeCulture shop in October and will have a donation box at our Derby table. More info here. http://www.montaguem...7&ID=303&success=yes Consider looking through your closets for something crazy to contribute.
I just ran my cart on the turners falls track with the help of John Landino and it is slower than before it was paved. I ran the same car just before it was paved and it was a lot faster. The new ramps will be a great addition and it sure will give add a couple MPH. My new cart on the new pavement was about the same speed my old cart was last year.
I still have lots of free bikes and bike parts for those who want to build a cart. If you need a bike for just riding around come over and pick one out. Joe landry 863 2915
There are two events this weekend related to the Montague Soapbox Derby:
Saturday August 20th is Montague Old Home Days.
We're looking for carts to be in the parade, and then show off during the day. Race Director Mik Muller will be on hand to answer questions and hand out racer applications, and show off some of last year's carts!
Montague town common, Montague Center (corner of Main Street and Center Street)
Parade starts at 2:00 -- show up at 1:45 if you want to be in it.
Post Parade cart show-off: 3:00
Sunday August 21st is the Soapbox Build Party at Joe Landry's House.
From 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM Joe Landry will open up his studio and workshop to those who need help with their carts. Joe also has about 50 old bicycles set aside just for cutting up and turning into carts and the tools to make it happen! Perfect photo op!
181 Turners Falls Road, Turners Falls, MA 01376
The Second Annual Montague Soapbox Derby will be held on Saturday, September 17th, 2011, at Unity Park in Turners Falls, MA. Up to 100 derby carts will compete for real metal trophy cups and local artist-rendered style-trophies.
The Official Derby Announcers will include Franklin County representative Steve Kulik, Montague selectboard member Pat Allen, Montague town clerk Deb Borbeau and the Duke of Sports' Russ Brown.
The Montague Soapbox Derby is a fundraiser for Montague Community TV.
For more information, call Race Director Mik Muller. (413) 320-5336
Montague Soapbox Derby at Turners Falls Block Party
Turners Falls -- Winners from the 2010 Montague Soapbox Derby, as well as new contestants for the 2011 Derby will be in attendance at the Fifth Annual Turners Falls Block Party, being held this Saturday, August 13th, 2011.
The carts will be part of the parade, which starts at 2:00. After the parade attendees of the block party will be able to sit in and even ride some of the carts.
Jack Nelson of Carriage House Designs will also unveil a marble bench he made just for the derby, complete with an engraved image of the derby logo.
Race organizers are expecting about one hundred drivers at the racer this year, including a group of ten from Sharon, CT, several from Brattleboro, VT, and even one driver from Nazereth, PA. Most of last year's Montague racers are entering again, with some entering additional carts.
Those interested in racing are asked to go to the official website, MontagueSoapboxDerby.com, and download and print the form and send it in with their entry fee check of $25. The application deadline is August 31st.
The race organizers are also looking for vendors, especially food vendors, and race sponsors. Forms for vendors and sponsors are also available on the website. Deadline is August 31st.
Montague Soapbox Derby Open Call for Sculptors and Artists
Montague Soapbox Derby Seeks Local Artists to Create Winning Trophies
Montague, MA -- The Montague Soapbox Derby, to be held on Saturday afternoon, September 17th, in Unity Park, Turners Falls, is looking for local artists and sculptors willing to help create a series of six to ten trophies for winners of the various style categories of soapbox carts entered into the derby.
Categories can be vague or specific, and trophy sizes may range from six inches to twenty inches in height. Any material may be used, found or crafted, as long as the trophy appears to be a valid, worthwhile object attained through excellence in that category, and must be able to be mounted on a standard wooden base, which will be provided by the race committee.
Artists may sign the trophy, and if they are interested in doing so, may present the trophy at the end of the races in the awards ceremony at the end of the race.
Artists interested in producing a trophy for the derby may call Mik Muller at (413) 320-5336 or go to the official derby website and fill out the "Contact Us" form.
The Montague Soapbox Derby is a fundraiser for Montague Community Cable TV, a 501(c)(3) non-profit.
The Montague Soapbox Derby is coming up fast on Saturday, September 17th, and we want to make it a grand day for Turners Falls. And you can help us do that with a minimum of fuss. Here's how...
We have a Facebook page, and hope everyone can post a short message to their Facebook walls, Google Circles, email lists, etc. It takes but a second to do, and you'll be helping us out a lot.
Here's a sample of what you can copy and post. And thanks for any help you can provide with spreading the word! It's going to be a great day!
Hey there! This sounds like yet another fun event in our area, coming up in September. The Montague Soapbox Derby! "Like" their Facebook page and stay in the loop. http://Facebook.com/MontagueSoapboxRaces
Turners Falls -- The wheels will be spinning 'round and 'round again when the Second Annual Montague Soapbox Races comes to Unity Park in Turners Falls, MA, on Saturday, September 17, at 12:00 noon.
Race organizers are expecting about one hundred racers this year, including a group of fifteen from Sharon, CT, and several from Brattleboro, VT. Most of last year's Montague racers are entering again, with some entering additional carts.
Race Organizer Mik Muller is coming fresh off his success with the Mutton & Mead Medieval Festival, and hopes to top off 2011 with another successful event for the town, and the region. "The race last year was amazing and surprised everyone, including me" said Muller, referring to the number of spectators who showed up and the stories that were told afterwards. He hopes this year will be twice as big.
One thing that could help with attendance is the fact that this year the race will be on Saturday instead of Sunday. Many people had other obligations on the Sunday last year, including a massive clambake just on the other side of the Connecticut River.
"Another thing we'd like to rectify from last year was the fact that you couldn't see the race carts coming down the hill due to the curve and the trees in the way" Muller continued. "This year we hope to borrow risers or bleachers and place them on the outside of the turn at the bottom of the hill." This will allow people to see the carts almost from the very top of the hill, and a better view than from the inside of the turn.
Applications for racers are being accepted right now, with the deadline coming up soon. Those interested in racing are asked to go to the official website, MontagueSoapboxRaces.com, and download and print the form and send it in with their entry fee check of $25.
The race organizers are also looking for vendors, especially food vendors, and race sponsors and underwriters. Forms for vendors and sponsors and underwriters are also available on the website. The deadline is August 15th for them.
Alana Holmes Martineau, the lead singer from Ruby's Complaint and past winner of Valley Idol, will be singing the National Anthem, and so far the Rendezvous has signed up to be the beer and burger vendor. Harbor Dogs will also be there.
I have a large inventory of fantastic bikes for soapbox carts. Call me and pick up what you need. Also, keep in mind there will be a session where you can come to my studio and work on a cart. I have tool and a willingness to help. If you need advice before the build give me a call.
It is expected that there will be two other races. An adult race in Sharon Ct http://sharonfiredept.org/custom.html?id=7841 and a possible race in Brattleboro. Mik and I are expecting to go to both of them. Hope to see you there.
Turners Falls -- The exclusive DVD video of the 2010 Montague Soapbox Races, held this past September 19 in Unity Park, is now for sale by MCTV.
The whole day was captured by four separate cameras, situated at the top, middle and bottom of the hill. All the action, all the drama, all the laughs, all the chills... all on one single DVD, for your home viewing pleasure.
You can purchase the DVD online at the address below, or by sending a check for $15 plus $2 shipping & handling to Soapbox Race, c/o MCTV, 34 2nd Street, Turners Falls, MA 01376. Please make sure to include your return address. You may also stop by MCTV to purchase in person (and save the shipping and handling).
On behalf of the Montague Community Television (MCTV) board of directors I would like to thank the many people who made the Montague Soapbox Race a success. I apologize in advance the people I inadvertently omit.
The race would not have been possible without director Mik Muller’s vision, enthusiasm and countless hours of hard work and the planning committee of Brandon Stafford, Barry Savinski, Doug Fontaine, Charles Kelley, Hyrum Huskey, Jon Dobosz, Jason Burbank, Greg Garrison, Joe Landry, Deb Bourbeau and Tom Bergeron.
A special thanks to town officials in Montague and their “event friendly” cooperation – from the fire, police, DPW and parks departments to the select board to the many town employees who volunteered their time behind the scenes and on race day. The MCTV team of Robin Mide, Dean Garvin, Kathy Lynch, Donna Festinger, Don Clegg, John Duda, AJ Cook, Janet Masucci, Linda Downs-Bembury, and Jo Schneiderman captured racers on video and Brickett Allis provided the PA system.
Deb Bourbeau was in the limelight on race day, recording racers’ speeds and times on the platform but also organizing an incredible team of race officials. Dave Jensen checked in carts and drivers; Miette Muller registered late arrivals; Mandy Hampp ensured their safety inspections were in order; Bob and Wendy Bogusz lined up the racers and pushed the carts to the start line; Mike McAuliffe and Kevin McCarthy set up and released the stop blocks at the starting gate on the countdown; flagman Doug McIntosh radioed Bourbeau when carts were in position, relayed the ‘time to beat’ to the racer, and confirmed when the racer was ready; Linda Ackerman did the radio countdown for racers AND officials; Greg Garrison operated the radar gun on loan from the Erving Police Department; and Dr. Mark Allen, Mike Burek and Jack Nelson were at the finish line to capture and relay times and speeds and ensure the road was clear for the next racer.
Bourbeau was joined on the platform by announcer Russ Brown and Pat Allen who kept the crowd entertained between races. Allen also judged the style awards along with Senator Stan Rosenberg. Hyrum Huskey not only coordinated the radio communications but donated a set of radios to MCTV for future events. Nancy Paglia was the vendor coordinator, Nina Martin the first aid coordinator, and Doug Fontaine was the sponsor coordinator. Chuck Vassar and Barry, Laurie and Bill Stafford acted as the safety inspection team. Tom Bergeron and the DPW ensured blockades were in place at key intersections, swept the street in advance of the race and provided event boxes for trash collection. Barry, Cody and Mary Savinski ran the 50/50 raffle with help from Lindsey Gilbert. Joe Landry set up the announcers’ platform and hosted a build party. Bill Melnick arranged for hay bale delivery and Mike Blanchard coordinated volunteers. Charles Kelley helped the racers at the finish line, and Paul Redeker provided the tents for the first aid area.
A special thanks to all those who set up the hay bales – many of the "race officials" listed above, along with Mike Blanchard, and especially those who restacked the hay at the end of a long day – Ezra Ward, Tim Burbank, Claire Pless, Russ Brown, Mandy Hampp, Nancy Paglia, Stefan Smyth, Cody Savinski and Alan Curtis.
Our underwriters were Greenfield Savings Bank, Narragansett Brewers, Kostanski Funeral Home, Montague WebWorks and Dr. Jordan Quinn, while sponsors included Maniatty Real Estate, Holy Smokes, Joe Gochinski, FirstLight Power Resources, Good Dirt Pottery, The Solar Store, Florence Savings Bank, and Power Down Debt. T-Shirts, cups and posters were screened by SilverScreen Design.
We look forward to an amazing race in 2011 if the excitement and buzz from this year is any indication. Entry applications will start being accepted in May and will be capped at 100 racers total. Those interested in underwriting, sponsoring or advertising or vending at the race may call Race Director Mik Muller at (413) 320-5336. Racers look to the website for information as it comes available. The Race Rules will be locked by October 1st, 2010.
Anne Harding, President
Board of Directors, Montague Community Cable, Inc. -- MCTV
A very big thank you to Mik and all of the other community members who are responsible for the fun times at the Soap-Box Races today! If you've not gone yet, there's still time for fun so head out to Unity Park in Turner's Falls.
Here's the list of racers, in age order. We will likely get more racers tomorrow morning.
Num Name Age City State
05 Chelsea Curtis 8 yrs Turners Falls MA
08 Thor Mead 8 yrs Wendell MA
06 Kyle Bry 10 yrs Montague MA
30 Ivy Muller 10 yrs Montague MA
29 PJ Evans 11 yrs Montague MA
24 Ross Damon 12 yrs Northfield MA
26 JP Sanieski 12 yrs Northfield MA
11 Craig Bodell 13 yrs Gill MA
13 Logan Turner-Renaud 15 yrs Dummerston VT
16 Ezra Ward 17 yrs Montague MA
27 JP Sanieski 17 yrs Northfield MA
02 Timothy Burbank 20 yrs Montague MA
04 Tim Dowd 21 yrs Montague MA
09 Katie Kurtyka 22 yrs Turners Falls MA
23 Adam Goodwin 23 yrs Turners Falls MA
15 Cody Savinski 24 yrs Montague MA
32 Jen Schafer 32 yrs Turners Falls MA
07 Michael Becker 35 yrs Brattleboro VT
21 Krista Stoops 37 yrs Westfield MA
01 Daniel Kornguth 38 yrs Brattleboro VT
14 George Braca 40 yrs Amherst MA
03 Owen Graves 41 yrs Turners Falls MA
25 David Larue 45 yrs New Salem MA
10 Chris Raymond 48 yrs Bernardston MA
12 Godfried Turner-Renaud 49 yrs Dummerston VT
17 Tom Cameron 51 yrs Easthampton MA
18 John Stewart 54 yrs Lake Pleasant MA
22 Phil Brubaker 61 yrs Brattleboro VT
31 John Landino 62 yrs Turners Falls MA
20 Sam Groves 65 yrs Brattleboro VT
28 Joe Landry 65 yrs Turners Falls MA