Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Homemade Magic: Clark Lake's Disney Raft-O-Rama

The residents of Clark Lake near Jackson, MI have been holding a Raft-O-Rama for 51 years now. This summer's theme was Disney and yielded some great results. I haven't been able to find out which raft won the contest, so I'll just pick the top three of my own choosing.

My first place choice:


This Pirates of the Caribbean-inspired raft is awesome. OK, so maybe it doesn't get the most points for creativity (turning one kind of boat into a different kind of boat), but it more than makes up for that with overall quality, ambition, and amazing follow-through. This is remarkably high quality for a homemade piece. I love the added extra touch of the smoke from the cannon fire. Top notch, Disney-worthy work.

My second place choice:
There were three versions of Carl's flying house from UP in the Raft-O-Rama, but this one is the standout. The house looks the most like the actual house, the balloons are plentiful and colorful, the Carl and Russell costumes are nice. All of that is enough to earn second place, but don't miss Kevin the bird floating behind on the ski-doo! That's the way to earn your Wilderness Explorer Badge for Awesomeness!

My third place:

The photo gallery seems to suggest that there were a LOT of 101 Dalmatians-inspired floats in the Raft-O-Rama. I can't guess why. Maybe because it's easy to costume a lot of people as the puppies? At any rate, this one works the best, with Cruella's car serving as the means of conveyance.

Check out the complete gallery and see which ones you like best here. The Pete's Dragon float... well, bless them for trying anyway. It was a nice idea. The Cool Runnings Float... well, let's just decide to give them the benefit of the doubt on that one and hope they were led by innocent intentions and poor choices, because that's not appropriate. But why so many Dalmatians? I think there may actually be 101.

Which are your favorites? And if you were entering, what kind of Disney raft would YOU have made?

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