Big boat teams and drivers will appear for the inaugural H-1 Season Kickoff Party from 4 to 7 p.m. Saturday, May 11 at the Hydroplane and Raceboat Museum, 5917 South 196th St., Kent.
Fans are invited to meet drivers and hydroplane teams as they prepare for the May 31-June 2 unlimited H-1 season-opening race at Folsom Lake in Granite Bay, Calif., east of Sacramento.
Activities include: a celebrity autograph session; "cackleFest" or test firing of the vintage boats' V-12 engines; panel discussion and season predictions with top drivers; silent auction of hydro memorabilia to raise money for the museum.
Among the personalities expected to appear are:
• Kip Brown, driver, U-95 Spirit of Qatar
• N. Mark Evans, owner/driver of the U-57 FEDCO
• J. Michael Kelly, driver, U-37 Miss Beacon Plumbing
• Ryan Mallow, driver, U-100 Fox Plumbing
• Steve Montgomery, broadcaster and public relations for H1 Unlimited
• Brian Perkins, U-21 Miss Albert Lee
• Jeff Bernard, driver
• Billy Schumacher, owner of the U-37 and three-time Gold Cup winner
• David Williams, author, vintage Budweiser driver and director of the museum
• Jon Zimmerman, driver, U-9 Jones Racing
There also will be a side-by-side display of the 1982 Atlas Van lines and 1980 Miss Budweiser, featured performers at the 2013 Seafair Vintage Exhibition.
The public can see the finishing touches being put on the newly restored 1977 Atlas Van Lines (The Blue Blaster) that legendary driver Bill Muncey piloted.
The event is free to museum members, $5 for non-members. Food and drinks will be available for purchase.
For more information, visit www.hydromuseum.org.