Posts Tagged ‘barefooter’s’

World Barefoot Center Figure 8 Series

Friday, December 30th, 2011

The 2011 year for figure eight barefooting was more exciting than ever.  From Peter Flecks dominance of Footstock, to 4 different winners in the 4 individual events that make up the World Barefoot Center Figure Eight Series, which ultimately ended with a tie between Keith St Onge and Ron Blouw for the series championship.  What follows is a recap of the WBC figure eight series events from 2011.

The WBC figure eight series started in June at Footapalooza in Rolling Prairie Indiana.  26 footers participated and Marc Donahue started 2011 where he left off in 2010, by winning the event over Keith St Onge.  In the first run of the finals, Marc and Keith completed 3 and ½ 8’s, which ended up being the longest run of the day, when Keith beat Marc to give them each one loss.  Marc turned back around and beat Keith on the run off after 2 and ½ 8’s.  JJ Link took third with Ben Dieser a strong fourth, followed by Ron Blouw in fifth.  The event takes place on a private lake and the view is spectacular from the shore.  This is a great venue for a figure eight event.

JJ Link, Marc Donahue, Keith St.Onge

JJ Link , Marc D, Keith St Onge,

The next stop in the series was the Glen Meuller Figure Eight Challenge that takes place in St Louis, where 39 footers took to the water on a lake that only opens to ski boats on this one day for this tournament.  This event offered prizes for the “best fall”, the “first 8”, and the “longest 8”, as well as the standard  top finishers receiving awards.  This event was won by Ron Blouw who needed to beat the undefeated Tim Knoezer twice as he was coming from the loser’s bracket.  JJ Link again finished third, followed by Keith St Onge and Greg Fatla.  The event takes place at a private country club, and is run by Tim Knoezer and Anthony Gramalino.  If you get there early you can watch the ski show the night before.

Tim Knoezer, Ron Blouw, JJ Link

Tom Knoezer, Ron Blouw, JJ Link

The third event in the series is the Clean Lakes Festival Barefoot Challenge.  This is just one of the many events in the Clean Lakes Festival, located in Madison Wisconsin.  This event was won by Jon Debelak, who had to come from loser’s bracket to beat a previous Clean Lakes figure 8 champion Paul Stokes twice.  Ron Blouw finished third, just ahead of his cousin Eric DeVries who was a strong fourth and Aaron Schoezel was fifth.  One of the really cool things about this event is it’s proximity to downtown Madison.  As is expected for any event in the figure eight series, this event was well run by Bob Manke and Paul Stokes.

Paul Stokes against Mike Netzer in Madison, WI

The last event in the series takes place at the World Barefoot Center.  This event had 32 barefooters competing.  David Small held off his business partner Keith St Onge to win his second consecutive title in this event.  David and Keith did 8 after 8 in the two final runs, with Keith winning the first run to give David his first loss.  David was just two solid to beat twice in a row and David won the run off over Keith.  Ben Dieser  finished third ahead of Marc Donahue and Ron Blouw. Like last year, there was an awards presentation located at the WBC ski school with food and drinks.  The world Barefoot Center was a great host for the event.

Swampy, David_Small, Keith_St_Onge, Ben Dieser, Marc Donahue, Ron Blouw at the WBC Figure 8 Finals

Swampy, David Small, Keith St Onge, Ben Dieser, Marc Donahue, Ron Blouw

In the overall standings, Ron Blouw and Keith St Onge ended in a tie for the points lead, with Marc Donahue in third.  Just how close was it?  The two footers each finished with 125 points.  Neither footer finished lower than 5th in any event, Ron had a 1st, a 3rd and a 5th, while Keith had two 2nds, and a 5th.  Each footer had 2 wins in the finals, with Ron coming from the loser’s bracket to win twice in the final round in St Louis, and Keith came from the loser’s bracket in Indiana and in the WBC tournament to win on the first run each time, only to lose the next run in both instances.  Each footer finished in the top three 2 times.  They faced each other twice and each won once.  It was indeed too close to call.

The entire series was very competitive with multiple winners in the individual events.  Of the top three finishers in the individual events, there were 9 different footers to finish in the top 3, with Keith, Ron, and JJ the only three to place in the top three twice.  The event was very competitive.  The events attracted multiple footstock winners and other figure eight winners.

Keith St.Onge, Ron Blouw & Marc Donahue

Keith St Onge, Ron Blouw, Marc Donahue

This is a great series and the events went off very smoothly with great leadership.  The WBC figure eight series motto is “no one left on the beach” and the tournament allowed duct tape to prevent blisters and either deep water starts or starts from a step off ski.  It allowed for beginners as well as advanced footers to compete against each other.  All ages were included with men and women competing head to head, there were even two sets of husbands and wives competing in the Florida event.  This is a great way to get to know other barefooters who have a similar passion for the sport.  It is also a way to go head to head with some of the best barefooters in the world, and who knows….anything might happen.  If you have never tried a figure 8, join us at one of the events for next year, I bet you will get hooked.  The event was sponsored by Reef Safe Sun Care, US Gear, and the World Barefoot Center.

By: Ron Blouw & Keith St.Onge

John Deere -PrivateTour!

Wednesday, July 6th, 2011

After a few days on the water I asked a couple members of the show team about taking a tour of John Deere.  John Deere was founded in Moline, IL so why not check it out while here.  I knew Keith Berger mentioned he worked for Deere so I asked him was he recommended.  He told me he had tomorrow off and would take us on a personal tour.  Sounds good to us!  Keith brought us to the Davenport assembly line plant and explained everything!  We even got to put on a few lug nuts that were the size of my fist!  He than brought us over to his office, which was the Training Facility.  Keith trains people how to use the new equipment and we got the best treat of all.  He let us drive a massive Forwarder.  A Forwarder is like a huge cherry picker.  It felt like we were in a monster truck but it ran so smoothly!  The controls where set up like playing a video game but without a steering wheel.  Small joy sticks were used to steer this beast!

We then went to the rusty palace as the employers call John Deere headquarters.  From a far the building looks great but all the steel has rusted over the years, which acts as a sealant once rusted.  We were able to see the history of John Deere and how it all got started.  Very interesting and a huge thank you to Keith Berger for taking the time to show us around!  We will never forget it!

The Barefooting Across AmericaTour Begins

Monday, May 16th, 2011

The tour begins!  5/15

Keith St. Onge and Lauren Lindeman are off!  First stop Port St. Lucie, FL at the PGA tourney.  A great start to the tour Keith St. Onge tricked a potential world record of 13,100!  This is the first time 13,000 points has been reached in history. Woo hoo! After the tournament we loaded up the RV and headed north to Valdosta, Georgia.  The Cargile family was welcoming and allowed us set up on their property for the night. It was peaceful and a beautiful area full of lakes and open land.

Hitting the road early this time in search for a church.   Our navigation system brought up a church within one mile down HWY 75 so we pulled off.  We met a nice young woman and we asked her what time the service was., “Sunday school starts in two minutes.” She said.  Ummm, “What about the service?” We questioned.  Isn’t Sunday school for teenagers and younger?  She replied, “No, this is Sunday school for grown ups.”  We told her we had never been to a Sunday school for grown ups but we were willing to give it a try!  The church was in Lenox, GA and we had a great time and learned a lot from the deacon (Chad) that put on the Sunday school.

We would like to thank Chad for sending us this email and keeping us in their prayers for safe travels.  Thank you so much for welcoming us into your church. Here is what we received from the Church we visited:

“Keith & Lauren,

Hey ! I just wanted to let you guys know how much we enjoyed your stopping by for Sunday School today at Lenox Baptist Church ! It was a pleasure meeting you both and please stop by on your way back through. I pray for safe travels and good luck with everything you all have going on with your barefootin clinics!

In Christ,

Chad Sumner
Lenox Baptist Church”

The billboards along the way are entertaining feet follow us everywhere! Traveling from Valdosta to Atlanta we are hoping to meet up with some friends in Atlanta.  Followed by grocery shopping at Whole Foods in Marrietta, GA in search of Coconut Bliss and other healthy products!

It has been a blessing having my fiancé Lauren with me.  She drives the bus when I get tired and fuels me up with food when need be.  It has been interesting watching her drive this beast though!  A 34ft. motor home keeps you working the whole time while driving.  If it’s windy you feel it, when a trucker passes you it pushes you over and when you drive by a larger vehicle you feel the wind off it and you once again feel the wheel challenge you.  We are approaching Atlanta right now and I can tell Lauren is getting much more relaxed driving the Anytime Fitness Tour bus…phewwwww…I can relax a bit, but must take over the helm in the big cities.