While Covid-19 continues to plague our nation, we are still witness to many Americans who appear to be unphased by this powerful virus which has so far claimed the lives of more than 180,000 Americans. We just returned from the Emerald Coast Poker Run, where there was a strong presence of vacationers from Destin to Pensacola Beach, who carried on with their activities, un-masked and unwilling to follow guidelines that have been put forth by government leaders and health organizations on a global scale. In spite of these observations, FPC was able to conduct our Emerald Coast Powerboat Week activities, with some major changes to the event format.
With more focus on the boating, and less focus on the planned evening parties, we were able to execute on a large-scale poker run with about sixty-five teams and three hundred participants, and the largest “group gathering” was well-orchestrated by the staff at the county-owned Destin FWB Convention Center. After three days of boating activities, on Saturday night, 225 guests enjoyed dinner, played out poker hands, and watched the usual awards presentations….all the while maintaining social distancing guidelines in the massive banquet hall that often seats over 1,000 guests for larger functions. This new format, proved above-all, that with extra focus on “making changes”, several powerboating enthusiasts were able to pursue their passion, and still enjoy the camaraderie that has made this sport, their preferred lifestyle.
Moving forward with poker run events staged by FPC is paramount to the continued enjoyment of our sport by FPC members, and the survival of our nearly 30-year organization as a viable business enterprise. It’s no secret that the FPC business model is driven by staging events, and with six months of event “shut-down” and substantially lower turnouts at events that are coming back online, it’s understandable that 2020 will be FPC’s worst year on record. But dealing with roadblocks and challenges is what every business owner faces from time to time. We’ve weathered a lot of storms, but it’s clear that 2020 is the year that FPC will take a sharp change of course, to create a more positive outcome for the “Club as a business enterprise”, which supports a family of four, and for the “Club as a Lifestyle Organization”, that enriches the lives of its members, by providing a safe recreational boating playground and an extended family of friends who share the same passions.
There are three components to this Course Change for FPC, while the Covid-19 Virus remains a threat:
1) MORE EVENTS: FPC will continue conducting poker run events as we have for 28 years, but with a stronger focus on “smaller” more manageable events, that do not present overcrowding problems at restaurants and group functions. We stage events that are by design, focused on get togethers and social interaction, so it presents challenges to an organizer with maintaining the required social distancing guidelines advocated by global health officials. As organizers, it is our legal and social responsibility to ensure these guidelines are met, and we want our participants to understand, that they will need to be prepared for these new event formats. As this bulletin is released, we are still seeing the highest number of Covid-cases in Florida, across the three counties of Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach. At the same time MONROE County, home to the Florida Keys, exercises the strictest guidelines of all…with mandatory masks in public places (except while dining) and substantial violation penalties. We all need to get on board with these new ways so we can continue enjoying poker runs.
2) YACHT FRACTIONAL & CHARTERING: FPC will expand into new marine-related enterprises that can complement the FPC business model, offering Club members more opportunities to enjoy yacht chartering throughout Florida, for private family or corporate outings, or in conjunction with existing FPC poker run events. There is no better time than now, to launch the Florida Fractional Club business model, which puts up to four owners in an attractive yacht management program that is affordable, and provides extensive personal use of well-maintained yachts from 50-70 in length. The extra bonus is that when not in use by owners, the yacht can generate charter revenue to defray maintenance costs! Several FPC members are already enjoying the success of these joint-ownership programs, and FPC now has the docking facilities and the staff, to get this program on course!
3) PHOTO & VIDEO STUDIO SERVICES: With our studio archives stuffed with powerboat content gathered over the years, and with YouTube event videos caught up, our in-house team is able to locate your favorite FPC poker run moments, and compile a personal video that brings it all back in HD video.. Content packages can include full-length videos and short social-media clips, that are easy to share on FB and Instagram! We have the content of your fun times with FPC at our finger tips….and a staff ready to turn projects quickly!
PHOTO & VIDEO PRODUCTION: It’s no secret that FPC has a well-trained team of photo and video professionals that have provided their expertise to create content for the FPC website, magazine, YouTube channel and social media campaigns. This same team of professionals is able to create your content as well…whether it’s a video showcase of your boats, cars, airplane, home or even a special event such as a product launch, a family wedding or a corporate function. We have the staff and the experience to create your perfect video and photo album!
FOR INFO ON ANY OF THESE TOPICS, Contact FPC President, Stu Jones: [email protected] / Cell : 954-684-9333
We thank all of our FPC members and sponsors for their continued support through these challenging times!