Oxford, Uk (PressExposure) July 27, 2009 -- Thunderstorms and scattered rain washed the Oxford streets clean for much of the morning and afternoon, but the sun came out late in the day on Saturday July 25th to brighten the mood. Despite the unfavorable forecasts and less than ideal weather, a record 409 Porsches from 19 states and Canada said "bring it on" and flooded uptown Oxford with a deluge of their own. With portions of revenue from registrations, reserved parking in MaryLynn's Row, and raffle ticket sales, Porsches 2 Oxford attendees raised $10,000 for the American Cancer Society -- another record by nearly five-fold. The can-do willingness to roll with the day's punches underlined the theme once again for the nation's most anticipated casual Porsche party.
"It's difficult to encapsulate the thanks organizers have for the patience and understanding of all 409 attendees," said P2O Director of Media & Publicity Chris Rieman. "In a perfect world these things don't happen. For 12 months every volunteer dedicated themselves to the event knowing weather could make a lot of hard work go un-rewarded. Attendees refused to let that happen however and shined the brightest when the skies were darkest."
Thunderstorms awakened Porsche fans about 4:15am and precipitation remained until shortly after noon. Porsche fans then had a chance to clean cars for good and walk the streets lined with cars from a 1955 356-Pre A to a 2009 Cayman S. Also making appearances were an original Porsche tractor and a pair of Beck 904 and 550 Spyder reproductions on personal display from legendary craftsmen Chuck and Randy Beck of Atlanta, GA. Cincinnati ABC affiliate WCPO-TV Channel 9 provided coverage for the tri-state while a representative from Excellence Magazine handled photography. Top-50 awards -- venerable P2O Bricks -- and a $10,000 check to the ACS preceded a drive to Hueston Woods State Park to round out the dry portion of the festivities. Local and national sponsors offered a variety wares and tech sessions to keep every owner happy. The Mid-Ohio Region Porsche Club of America served as event host.
"A dozen organizers were on the streets at 4am deciding how best to handle the pending storms," said P2O Chairperson Brice Kadel. "After a lot of radar-watching, we knew organizers may be forced off the scripted page today. Ultimate success would depend on whether attendees would grant us the latitude to do just that without a lot of fuss. Even my best-case scenario never expected such graciousness and accommodation. The people remain the most impressive part of this event."
The fifth anniversary event, organizers pre-registered 448 cars and played host to 409. The weather kept around 100 Porsches from attending due to no-shows and weaker day-of registrations, however Porsches on display of all vintages and models eclipsed last year's record of 396 cars under less threatening skies. Oxford Visitors & Convention Bureau Executive Director Diana Durr and her staff spent months of planning to ensure P2O was a signature event for the city.
"Porsches 2 Oxford is a privilege to be involved with," Durr said. "Today was probably the most challenging in five years, but also the most gratifying. The OVCB couldn't ask for a nicer collection of people to run this event or visit the city of Oxford as our personal guest. My team including Barb Rice, Christie Schlichter, and numerous volunteers want to thank everyone for such a positive attitude each and every year."
"P2O remains first and foremost an event about people," Rieman said. "Porsches merely provide the excuse to get together and have a great time. Perhaps most satisfying is watching the attendees take ownership of the last Saturday in July. They genuinely care about one another and many tell us if they can only make one event all summer, P2O takes precedence. I don't see how anyone can argue that point given the incredible turnout today in what were, at times, incredible weather conditions."