You snooze, you lose
For the second straight year, the main intersection in the Village of Saugerties will look a bit like the opening montage from The Monkees’ TV series as the Great Saugerties Bed Race unfolds. Tapping in to a time-honored Midwestern tradition, the event’s organizers are hoping that bed-racing will become a local classic as well.
Though registration for the event, scheduled to take place on Sunday, August 5, is closed to new entrants, the joy of bed-racing as a spectator sport cannot be denied. “I have video of the smiles and the cheering,” said co-organizer Bill Yosh of the 2011 contest. “You don’t get to see that very often.”
Co-organizer Marjorie Block agreed. “Things are so serious today, between the economy and other things going on. This is just an opportunity to laugh together and have fun,” Block said. “People weren’t being cruel to each other; they were laughing together as a community.”
Eight teams of five people apiece will compete for prizes and bragging rights in this year’s Great Saugerties Bed Race in three separate heats, with each cutting the field of competitors in half. Each race will begin at the main stage at the intersection of Main and Partition Streets, with the first round heading down the latter and the second the former. Two teams will battle it out in the championship race for a grand prize of $100 and a snazzy trophy. The runner-up will receive a $50 prize and, presumably, a slightly-less-snazzy trophy.
Also on the line is a bit of tomfoolery. “Teams are encouraged to bring water guns and water balloons to battle the other teams,” said Yosh. “Fans on the street might get wet.”
Other prizes will be awarded in categories covering the Most Creative Bed, the Most Creative Last-Place Finish and the Best Overall Theme.
While organizers are hoping for a stellar turnout along the racecourses, it’s not too late to help by volunteering. “We need people to help with crowd control, and to sell water and merchandise,” said Block.
Prior to post time, teams are encouraged to whip the crowd into a bit of a frenzy. “Before each race, the teams are going to parade around and throw things to the crowd,” said Yosh. “Hopefully when the race goes off, everyone will be cheering for their favorite team.”
The final heat is expected to begin at 4:30 p.m., though there’s plenty of action happening before the races as well. On Saturday evening, village merchants will open their doors for a special Pajama Crawl.
The second annual Great Saugerties Bed Race gets underway on Sunday, August 5 at 1 p.m. at the intersection of Main and Partition Streets in the Village of Saugerties. For more information, contact Bill Yosh at (646) 707-4126 or Marjorie Block at (845) 246-0784.