Mendocino County

This Quirky California Race Is Going Virtual

The Kinetic Grand Championship, a merry Humboldt County tradition, will have 2020 competitors submit videos from home.

Tina Kerrigan

MAY'S MOST MAJOR MERRYMAKERS? You also know them as the teams behind the Kinetic Grand Championship, one of the showiest showdowns around. Is this the famous three-day competition that finds people-powered machines, quirky vehicles that are shaped like bugs, shoes, animals, and such, moving across land and water in Humboldt County? And we use "moving" lightly here, as sometimes the elaborate sculptures momentarily lose their get-up-and-go? It is, oh yes. The Championship has become a springtime centerpiece of the Eureka area, drawing both creative competitors and crowds that are eager to cheer on the competitors' imaginative creations. But alas: The 2020 event is changing in the face of COVID-19.

GOOD NEWS? The Memorial Day Weekend happening isn't off, but rather has become a "do it from home" affair called the 2020 Kinetic Sculpture in Place. Which means competitors, or "glory hogs" in the charming parlance of the competition, will compete online. Competitors will "... compete  in the traditional categories of Art, Speed, Engineering, and Pageantry plus some online exclusive awards just for this year (we all hope.)" The race HQ continues that "(t)his event will be open to all members of the community who are able to meet the Kinetic challenges, and is not limited to previously registered race teams."

MORE DETAILS... will come in the coming weeks, but consider this a spirited, safe, #StayatHome way to keep a whimsical California tradition trucking. And truly? We can't wait to see the videos, which are sure to be strange, awesome, and uplifting.

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