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atlfootr
09-30-2006, 11:14 AM
http://www.bananageorge.com/

19th Annual
:banana:Blairfoot Bananza :banana:
BAREFOOT
Water Ski Tournament

Oct. 7-8
Winter Haven, Fla.


An International field of barefooters will compete
for endurance and figure eight titles


WINTER HAVEN, Fla. - Some of the world's top barefoot water ski athletes are expected to compete in the 19th Annual Blairfoot Bananza World Barefoot Water Ski Endurance Championships, Oct. 7-8, on Lake Silver in downtown Winter Haven, Florida. In past years, the very successful event named in honor of barefoot water skiing ambassador "Banana" George Blair, has attracted competitors from more than 25 states and four countries. Last year, the International Water Ski Federation recognized the Bananza as the official World Endurance and Figure Eight Championship.

Male and female barefooters of all ages and ability will compete for titles in two events. The endurance event will test strength and stamina, as the skier competes against the clock. The figure-eight competition pits two barefooters against each other as they are being pulled at approximately 38 mph behind a single boat going around a figure eight course.

The world championships' title in both endurance and figure-eight will be awarded to the top-three placements in the newly developed overall division, while all other athletes will compete for Blairfoot Bananza age division titles. At the completion of the tournament, the endurance champion and the figure-eight champion in each division will challenge each other for the prestigious title of World Overall Endurance Champion.

The Blairfoot Bananza also offers special junior boom and pig tail events, allowing up-and-coming barefooters a chance to compete in the Blairfoot Bananza.

The event, which is open to the public and free to spectators, is hosted by the City of Winter Haven, Central Florida's Sports Marketing and the Lakeland Water Ski Club. It is sanctioned by USA Water Ski and is officially titled The World Barefoot Endurance Championships by the International Water Ski Federation.


For more information or entry information contact Jeff Clark at Blairfoot@verizon.net.

"Banana" George Blair is a member of USA Water Ski, the American Barefoot Club and a 1991 inductee to the American Water Ski Educational Foundation's Water Ski Hall of Fame. Blair took up the sport of water skiing to help overcome a back injury in 1955 when he was 40 years old and went on to become the only man to barefoot on all seven continents (70 countries). Blair, who turned 91 in January, is still barefooting.

If you haven't encountered "Banana" George in person, you've likely seen him in the world of print and television advertising swathed in yellow and barefoot water skiing for Chevrolet, Nike, Armor-All, Chiquita, Sea-Doo, or the Florida Lottery. And you've undoubtedly seen him during one of his many TV appearances with Regis and Kathie Lee, NBC Today, Letterman, Discovery Channel, "Atmospheres" of the Weather Channel, CNN, ESPN, or CBS This Morning and the American Health Network. He also was featured in the July-August 2005 issue of Sports Illustrated for Women, naming him among the 81 sexiest men in sports, the only one in the water skiing world and the only one over the age of 48! "Banana" George was also recognized in the Guinness Book of World Records in 1988-89 and pictured in the 2003, 2004, 2005, and 2006 books.

SkiDog
09-30-2006, 12:14 PM
I can say that I have met the man, and a hell of a man he is! Great guy! Can't believe he's still skiing at 91 years young! He is the man!:banana: ::worthy: :banana:

atlfootr
09-30-2006, 08:39 PM
I can say that I have met the man, and a hell of a man he is! Great guy! Can't believe he's still skiing at 91 years young!
He is the man!:banana: ::worthy: :banana: So, your com'n down right?
You can stay at our place .... and if you want while your here, we'll go and ski w/ "the man" as well.

Blair
10-01-2006, 03:58 AM
hey who said they could use my name for that

SkiDog
10-01-2006, 01:08 PM
So, your com'n down right?
You can stay at our place .... and if you want while your here, we'll go and ski w/ "the man" as well.

I would love to! However, I got too many things already to do in Oct.
But ya never know, I might just decide to show up next weekend after all. Sounds like its gonna be a blast!

atlfootr
10-02-2006, 09:29 AM
I would love to! However, I got too many things already to do in Oct.
But ya never know, I might just decide to show up next weekend after all.
Sounds like its gonna be a blast!It always is.

I've been attend'n for many years and have 2 friends from Atlanta com'n dwn and possibly 3 more from S.C. Murtle Bch area as well. Ya definitly should jump'n the car and show up -- probably take ya only 4-5 hrs I'm guess'n.

Went out foot'n w/ Banana yesterday and he's really look'n frwd to see'n everyone this com'n weekend!
Can you believe, he's 91 yrs. yound and STILL FOOT'N!

atlfootr
10-10-2006, 10:21 AM
What a GREAT TYME, everyone had this weekend!
There were about 20 plus footers from nearby neighboring States, and of course no "Blairfoot Banaza" would ever be complete
without Banana spray'n foot in front of the crowd.

Read our local headline's from Winter Haven's " The Ledger".
http://www.bananageorge.com/

I'll post all the pic's I took, later today after work ... :cool:

SkiDog
10-10-2006, 11:59 AM
Hey Footer, can't wait to see the pictures! Did I read where you were attending the reunion at the end of the month?

atlfootr
10-11-2006, 08:05 PM
Hey Footer, can't wait to see the pictures! Did I read where you were attending the reunion at the end of the month?Affirmitive on reunion, pix's of event will soon be posted.

Robert Scott, two for "GOLD" :)

Mens II
Endurance / Figure 8

atlfootr
10-11-2006, 08:42 PM
Newspaper Article

Published Saturday, October 7, 2006
BLAIRFOOT BONANZA
At 91, Banana George Set for Ski Tourney


By Lisa Coffey (http://javascript%3Cb%3E%3C/b%3E:NewWindow%28376,130,%27/apps/pbcs.dll/personalia?ID=liscof&category=STAFF%27%29;)
The Ledger

WINTER HAVEN -- The Banana George Blairfoot Bonanza has been going on for some 19 years.

And for some 50 years, the yellow-clad Banana George has been barefoot water skiing, bringing the sport to the forefront and earning recognition for his feats.

At age 91 and three-quarters, Blair still skis on a boom nearly every day behind his yellow home on Lake Florence in Winter Haven.

The banker/entrepeneur from New Jersey, who has skied on all seven continents, started skiing to strengthen his broken back in his 40s.

Since then, he's become an icon of sorts for older Americans, trying his hand at wakeboarding, snowboarding, surfing and even bullriding when he was 85.

Dressed in a yellow jacket, shirt, pants and bright yellow Crocs with his dashing gray mustache and a pin bearing the title "Mayor of Cypress Gardens", Blair admits time is catching up with him.

"I'll be 92 on Jan. 22," Blair said. "I'm aiming for it. I plan to make it."

Today and Sunday he will make a pass at noon across Lake Silver in Winter Haven as part of the 19th annual Blairfoot Bonanza World Barefoot Water Ski Endurance Championships.

He rarely misses a chance to shine or promote the sport.

Blair attended the World Barefoot Championships in September in Washington

"Everything is more difficult," he said. "It's virtually impossible for me to do 90 percent of what I used to do."

What he does do every day is work out on a water skiing traction device in his home that simulates the pull of a boat on the tow rope. He pulls it 11 times and does the 12th time with his teeth. "I feel better than ever," said the great grand-father.


CINDY SKOP/2005 LEDGER PHOTO
Banana George Blair, 91, will be at the 19th annual Blairfoot Bonanza Water Ski Endurance Championships today on Lake Silver in Winter Haven. BLAIRFOOT BONANZA
WHAT: 19th annual Blairfoot Bonanza World Barefoot Water Ski Endurance Championships featuring 91-year-old George Blairfoor, a.k.a. Banana George

WHERE: Lake Silver in Winter Haven.

WHEN: Today and Sunday. Events begin at 9 a.m. each day.

EXTRAS: Admission is free... Mike Salber, of Orlando, will return to defend his title against Billy Benoist of Land O'Lakes and Gordy Anderson of Winter Haven.

atlfootr
10-11-2006, 08:51 PM
FINAL RESULTS

http://edfinley.net/figure8.htm

http://edfinley.net/2006OverallBlairfootResults.htm

TMCNo1
10-11-2006, 09:37 PM
atlfootr, GOOD JOB on your performance and placement!

atlfootr
10-11-2006, 09:52 PM
http://adx.theledger.com/apps/adx.dll/img/LL001/LARGEUNITAD01/NEWS/40017480946078164/-1/-/;IDN=-1045847079;Type=3 (http://www.tmcowners.com/teamtalk/)
Published Sunday, October 2, 2005
Blair Essentials

"Banana" George Keeps Active, Enjoys Annual Barefoot Water Ski Event

By Lisa Coffey (http://javascript%3Cb%3E%3C/b%3E:NewWindow%28376,130,%27/apps/pbcs.dll/personalia?ID=liscof&category=STAFF%27%29;) & Iza Montalvo (http://javascript%3Cb%3E%3C/b%3E:NewWindow%28376,130,%27/apps/pbcs.dll/personalia?ID=izamon&category=STAFF%27%29;)
& IZA MONTALVO

WINTER HAVEN
Wearing a pair of trademark yellow Arnett sunglasses, "Banana" George Blair held court Saturday at the 18th annual Blairfoot Bananza on Winter Haven's Lake Silver. Though Saturday's attendance seemed low, that didn't stop Blair from enjoying himself at the water-skiing event named for him.

"We are happy to have what we have," he said, holding onto the arm of his wife, JoAnne. "Last year it was canceled because of the hurricanes."

At age 90 and nine-twelfths, as he puts it, the world's most popular barefoot skier may be slowing down a bit, but his love of adventure isn't.

Last week, Blair spoke about what continues to be an exciting life from his living room overlooking Lake Florence.

After all these years, Blair remains meticulous about his appearance. For his interview, he dressed in a yellow, long-sleeve Oxford shirt and bright yellow silk pants and sported a finely trimmed mustache and a gold medallion embossed with the outline of two bare feet.

A banker from New Jersey, Blair started barefoot water-skiing at age 40 after breaking his back. Since then, his life has been a whirlwind, as he made a name for himself by barefoot skiing, smiling and living life to the fullest.

His schtick became bananas for his love of the color yellow. He wears yellow wet suits, a yellow pith helmet, yellow loafers and drives a yellow special edition Lincoln Mark VIII.

Blair would leave many senior citizens in his wake.

He's skied in more than 60 countries and on seven continents.

The Water Ski Hall of Famer, originally from Toledo, carries postcard-size bios of himself.

Photos on the front show him snowboarding, playing the drums, holding a ski rope with his teeth, and giving the thumbs-up signal while sitting on an air-chair.

The back of the bio is full of Banana George facts:

At age 68, he rode a camel.

At age 70, he learned to wake board.

At age 75, he rode an air chair.

At age 75, he snowboarded. At age 81, he drove a race car.

At age 82, he went skydiving.

At age 83, he rode his first surfboard.

At age 85, he rode a bull for a full second before being bucked off.

He has even dropped 300 feet in the air from a Sky coaster in Kissimmee with friend Kermit Weeks, owner of Fantasy of Flight in Polk City, and Bill Kitchen, the developer of the Sky coaster and other inventions.

"It's fun," Blair said.

The great-grandfather said he has no plans to retire from skiing. He tries to get on the water every day, though breaking his back several times -- including twice in 2001 -- has limited him to skiing on a training boom.

"I just get such a bang out of it," he said. "Even if I'm only out 10, 15, 20 minutes. It really clears my mind and gives me a new lease on life."

The training boom, though, isn't as fun as a fully extended tow rope.

"I'm hoping someday to get on the long line," he said.

But for now he plays it relatively safe, especially because of the short leash he said his wife keeps him on.

"There's no rest for the wicked," he said. "I'm still excited about every day and new things."

He keeps young by skiing, reading water ski magazines, eating health food and exercising, which lately comes in the form of running up and down the stairs in his home.

He said his next goal is to ski barefoot in Alaska. But he can never seem to get there because he's so busy traveling everywhere else and because the summer is so short in Alaska.

This year, he's been to France, New York and Steamboat Springs.

"I love working, and I love challenges, and I love life," he said.

:banana::banana::banana:

atlfootr
10-11-2006, 09:53 PM
atlfootr, GOOD JOB on your performance and placement!Thanks, brother :)

trickskier
10-11-2006, 10:14 PM
Congratulations Rob! You da MAN!!!!

atlfootr
10-12-2006, 09:43 AM
Congratulations Rob! You da MAN!!!!Appreciate it Trick, Ron Scarpa has another 3 event (barefoot trick, slalomn and jump)

Nov 4-5 to be held behind the USA Waterski HQ off I-4 in Polk City, FL.
Both my wife and I will be entered in that one as well, hope to place :)

trickskier
10-12-2006, 11:58 AM
Appreciate it Trick, Ron Scarpa has another 3 event (barefoot trick, slalomn and jump)

Nov 4-5 to be held behind the USA Waterski HQ off I-4 in Polk City, FL.
Both my wife and I will be entered in that one as well, hope to place :)

Best of Luck to both of you!

Davo
10-12-2006, 03:45 PM
Blair started barefoot water-skiing at age 40 after breaking his back.

At age 82, he went skydiving.

At age 85, he rode a bull for a full second before being bucked off.
Um, yeah...I feel like a major wuss after reading that. :worthy:

atlfootr
10-12-2006, 09:37 PM
Sometimes, he makes us all feel that way :purplaugh

atlfootr
10-13-2006, 12:27 PM
flickr photo test link ... bfore load'n Banana BFT pix's :)
http://www.flickr.com/photos/84517328@N00/

great photo software, seems to work well - easier on the eyes than photobucket.
you can even adjust the speed of the slideshow - prior to viewing.

jbfootin
10-13-2006, 01:29 PM
At 36 I can already feel my body stiffining up.:o

CoFooter
10-13-2006, 02:13 PM
36? Dude, you're a young pup. 44 next month, learned to foot at 40. Middle age crisis thing. I hope to he!! I'm still ripping it up at 60, much less 90. Yeah the body takes longer to recover from abuse - and hangovers, too - as you get older. But getting out there and living the thrill beats sitting on a couch any day. That will definitely shorten your life. Here's to ripping it up for a lot more years

jbfootin
10-13-2006, 02:27 PM
I dont plan on stopping any time soon. I'm just saying that at 36 I can already tell it takes me longer to recover than when I started footin at 19. The over 40 division at Footstock is no cake walk anymore. Most of those guys finish in the top 20 of the open also.

CoFooter
10-13-2006, 03:58 PM
Yeah, the older footers can rip. 50/60 year old guys smoke me all the time. Ever notice how crowded the over 40 division is in all tournamnets, not just Footstock, everywhere. Not enough young blood getting into it.They all get sucked up in wakeboarding - too bad. I try to convert a few guys per year, but usually it doesn't stick.

atlfootr
10-13-2006, 05:34 PM
I dont plan on stopping any time soon. I'm just saying that at 36 I can already tell it takes me longer to recover than when I started footin at 19. The over 40 division at Footstock is no cake walk anymore. Most of those guys finish in the top 20 of the open also.Say jb, Did U compete in FootStock's Figure 8 :confused: