KICKER to sponsor powerboat events

KICKER Marine Audio brings premium sound to two large powerboating events on Lake Havasu, Arizona–Desert Storm April 19-23 and Super Cat Fest West, April 26-29. The two events take place on back-to-back weekends of boating action to bring performance boat enthusiasts to Lake Havasu City, a boating Mecca for the country’s West Coast.

KICKER Marine Audio again joins the new owners of Desert Storm for this 25th Anniversary event. KICKER is especially visible as presenting sponsor for the annual Street Party on Thursday, April 20. Jim Russell, an event producer for 30 years, co-owned the event with its founder, Jim Nichols, Sr., who several years ago, sold it to his daughter-in-law and son, Christina and  Jim Nichols, Jr. After several years under their operation, Russell and Lake Havasu realtor and community leader Steve Tichnor wanted to ensure that the event stayed in Havasu, so they invested in buying it back.

Says Russell, “Thanks to the wonderful long-term sponsorship of KICKER Marine Audio, joining with new title sponsor, Anderson Powersports, we were able to acquire the event and make minor changes, making sure it stays in Lake Havasu. We are boating enthusiasts and this event has a place in the hearts of everyone in Havasu—it deserves to stay here and grow!”

KICKER Marine Audio has traditionally brought its XRV (Xtreme Recreational Vehicle), a travel edition of its famous headquarters’ “Wall of Boom” to Havasu’s Main Street for the “Eye of the Storm” Street Party. KICKER’s Real Marine sound equipment will also be seen on many of the millions of dollars of state-of-the art performance boats that will be displayed from 1-9 PM, including boats like the DCB owned by Rod Voegele of California-based Gatorwraps, also located in Lake Havasu, and the Rinker Flotilla owned by Jeff Cuvelier of Elite Audio of Havasu. Both boaters and businessmen are big KICKER Marine Audio fans as Gatorwraps adds the visuals to many KICKER-equipped customer boats, while Cuvelier has installed  KMA products for years. 

“Jeff provides an excellent example of what KICKER can bring to the party,” says Jeremy Bale, KICKER Marine Audio brand manager, “His own Rinker boat and his customers can attest to the top-sound quality of KICKER and its excellent performance in the marine environment. We are pleased to add our continued support to this anniversary event.”

Jake Fraleigh of Eliminator Boats is also planning to bring a new Ferrari Red 27 Speedster with twin Mercury 400 engines loaded with KICKER sound equipment to the event. Fraleigh calls the open-bow boat “a perfect example of the company’s dedication to lifestyle, functionality and performance—both with speed and sound.” 

The event is moving this year to Havasu State Park where the white sandy beaches of “Windsor 4” will serve as VIP headquarters. On Friday, April 21, the Parade of Power will travel from Thompson Bay to the Bridgewater Channel, passing under the London Bridge. Then, a Poker Run where Russell says “the waters will boil” with over 100 participants, led by the area’s First Responders and a KICKER Boat, will round out the day and end with a party for all participants.

On Saturday, April 22, the Sugrue’s Shoot Out event will run from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. from the Site Six Launch Ramp. The ¾-mile closed course Shoot Out is being organized by Russ Wallach of RPM Racing Enterprises and promises to be an exciting event with the best fan viewing from the park’s surrounding bluffs. The King and Queen of the Desert top speed title awards will be presented  at the party that evening with record breaking speeds expected.  

Preceding the performance events on Wednesday, April 19 is the annual Kruisin’ for a Kause as volunteer powerboaters with big engines and big hearts take area residents with special needs on boat rides, culminating in a BBQ lunch with karaoke entertainment at Lake Havasu State Park.

The next weekend, Super Cat Fest West takes the annual Lake of the Ozarks event to Lake Havasu, thanks to event producer Alvin Heathman, joined by sponsor River Dave of River Dave’s Place. This boaters’ event boasts Title Sponsors KICKER Marine Audio, Eliminator Boats, Franko’s DLA-M44, Gatorwraps and Dixxon Flannel, the latter which will show its Dixxon Eliminator 28’ Fundeck and new Eliminator 27’ Speedster. Other sponsors include Elite Sound; Ilmor Marine who will unveil a new power package;  Horizon Motorsports, a local boat dealer sponsoring the Saturday night party; Hamilton Marine Finance; Detail Specialties; and Barrett Custom Marine. Private sponsors will also bring notable boats, like DCB and Mauricio & Angie Vivanco with their DLA-M44 DCB, Kenny Gonzales and his well-known 48 MTI, “Wave Adios” and many other high-performance cats.  

Heathman says they are looking to get the town “more involved” as the event draws boats from across the country to explore Lake Havasu, which he sees as a similar boat culture to Lake of the Ozarks, “just with different scenery and smaller—but more concentrated. Lake Havasu is amazing in its own way—there is always something performance going on here—it’s a giant playground and I think it is the perfect setting,” he adds.

Since Heathman found logistics a bit more challenging in Havasu, he engaged a new development, Havasu Riviera Marina, to host the event. The marina has a new dock, boat ramp, well over 100 boat slips and can accommodate the many visiting boats and trailers for a three-day street party with food trucks, vendors and entertainment. “It will be like an offshore racers’ village,” says Heathman. He also plans a two-day fun run on land or water where people can explore on their own, visiting local businesses and bringing back receipts to turn in for poker hands. “It will be more casual—come and go as you please,” he says. The Friday and Saturday night parties include the popular Boom Bandits Entertainment group, along with awards, hot rods and boats—including the KICKER-outfitted “Boom Toon.”

The Saturday fun run and evening party will feature an auction for $5,000 in KICKER Marine Audio sound equipment for Super Cat Fest for Kids. The event  benefits the “forgotten kids” of Lake Havasu and will give money directly to local schools for lunch programs that some underprivileged kids’ families cannot afford.  

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