Why roll out of bed, when you can roll in one? On Sunday, Coconut Grove will host the “1-800-411 PAIN Great Grove Bed Race” to benefit the Alonzo Mourning Charities and the University of Miami Sleep Center.
Grand and Commodore Avenues will be transformed into the Grove’s own drag strips, with human-propelled beds replacing motor-driven vehicles. Local individual, business and organization sponsored beds will race down the 1/8 mile stretch, each hoping to snatch first in the theme, décor or racing time competitions.
The idea of propping beds on wheels and racing them dates back to 1920 in the streets of England. Coconut Grove picked up on the trend thirty years ago, and after an 8 year hiatus (from 2001 to 2008), the city revived its most hilarious event in 2009.
“The Great Grove Bed Race was a thriller last year,” said junior Harshil Patel. “It was seriously the most fun I have ever had at a charity event.”
Notable vehicles from previous years included a car straight out of Bedrock, a made-for-land Norwegian Cruise ship, Barracuda Raw Bar and Grill’s Viking ship, and even an Octomom parody.
The event drew in an immense amount of people last year.
“Over $10,000 went to Alonzo Mourning Charities, with 20,000 people in attendance. Our goal in 2010 is to double that!” said Daisy Lewis, event director of the race.
“For college students, the Homestead Speedway will have its cars and event truck there,” said UM Sleep Center administrator, John D. Robitaille.
Aside from certain celebrity attendees such as Alonzo Mourning, many restaurants around the grove will be participating, either by entering the race or offering specials to the public. One of the Grove’s landmark venues, Sandbar, will be offering their famous tacos, free burgers and hot dogs for kids.
“It is something for the community,” said Sandbar’s Manager, Rosy Reyes. “We have been participating in Coconut Grove races since we opened ten years ago.”
If watching teams of five struggle hilariously to steer a twin-sized bed down the Grove’s bohemian streets isn’t alluring enough, perhaps “The Saturday Night Pajama Pub Crawl” is just the event for you. For just a $25 donation, pajama-clad pub “crawlers” can enjoy a complimentary drink in nine different venues. One hundred percent of the profits go toward the Alonzo Mourning Charities and the UM Sleep Program. Registration runs from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Grove Spot, so put on your favorite P.J.’s and spend the night at the Grove.
The Great Grove bed race is one of Miami’s most unique events and fortunately for your pocket, admission is free to the public. As event director Daisy Lewis puts it, “Beds on wheels…seriously. What is crazier than that?!”
Ashley Brozic may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
IF YOU GO:
What: 1-800-411 PAIN Great Grove Bed Race
When: Sunday Sept. 5. Parade at 1 p.m., and the race begins at 2 p.m.
Where: Commodore Plaza and Grand Avenue
Why: Raising funds to benefit the benefit the Alonzo Mourning Charities and the University of Miami Sleep Center