S2KI Homecoming II – Back-Cracker’s official word on the event
[EDIT: HC II was held on September 25th, 2010. Details of the event were held back from reporting till date based on a request by the organizers.]
S2K International Homecoming II was in the making for over 13 months. Over this period, there were many obstacles overcome and tackled. Our members decided to contribute to find the solutions to these problems. I had the honor of leading the pack in addressing every issue in order to make this event compliant with American Honda’s goals and to ensure it matched the expectations of all that participated.
We had an interest list of 1000 people, and only a lucky 250, made it to this exclusive event. We broke up registration over two days and to our surprise all 250 spots were filled in less than 8 hours. We allowed 50 additional spots for the waiting list, and another 50 (S2000 Special Guests) for a total of 300 S2000 (350 Total S2000 + Special Guests) per limits decided at my meeting with American Honda. All in all the event sold out in 2 days per our expectation.
We had nation-wide member participation with people coming all the way from Florida, Texas, Alabama, New York, San Diego, San Francisco, Georgia, Colorado, West Virginia, Arizona, Nevada, Ohio, Washington, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Kansas, Illinois, Oregon, Minnesota, Idaho, New Mexico, South Carolina, and Maryland. We had international visitors as well from Canada, Taiwan, China and Japan.
On September 25th 2010, around 300 S2000s + 10-15 Rental Cars (out of state members flying in) met at a pre-determined location. To gather cars on such a scale, we rented out an entire restaurant parking lot and supplied our members with muffins, cinnamon rolls and energy bars. A Team Leader meeting was held, in which the leaders gave out specific information to participants on the plan to arrive at American Honda. We broke up into groups by color and caravanned to Honda headquarters.
While members were being gathered and organized into a color caravan, we had 14 vendors, the VIP show cars and Retro Show cars setting up for display at American Honda before the members arrived.
As the members arrived we started the “show” with our MC rowdy the members with his Michael Buffer Presentation (Lets get Ready to Rumble). We played the Chicago Bulls theme song as we introduced the S2000 Show Cars. Some of the historic shows cars included an Acura Legend with 450,000 Miles, an 85 CRX-SI, N600, 78 Civic CVCC, 2002 Integra Type-R, 1991 NSX with 50,000 miles, 1978 Honda Prelude.
S2000 VIP show cars on display included AlexS2200 Spoon S2000, MugenAP2 Mugen SS, Nichigo Amuse Widebody, Leesters Dry Carbon ASM/MUGEN S2000, S2X Mugen SS, TurtleS2K Spoon, WashabiS2K ASM, Go Tuning TracySports S2000 and my own car Back-Cracker’s Mugen S2000 😉 .
There was a lot of secrecy surrounding this event, which was totally intentional. We wanted our participants to guess who the special guest of honor was, what VIP S2000’s would be on display and understandably several of them wondered why no information was released until a week prior to the event? The answers are simple – we wanted to ensure all our members enjoyed the surprise and also kept information secret so that members would not be subject to unneeded scrutiny.
The biggest surprise though was our surprise guest, that I had the honor of escorting in to the event in my car. As you will see below, it was worth keeping information secret until the last minute.
My passenger (the surprise guest) was none other than the “Father of the S2000”, Mr. Shigeru Uehara. The looks on our members faces were priceless, and their smiles as they eventually realized, were well worth it. The moment was surreal as Uehara-san got one of the loudest cheers of all times.
As the day went on Uehara-san graciously signed autographs for hundreds of people. The event went as planned and the raffle awarded over $16,000 in prizes.
At the end of the event, mementos were presented to (CM) Honda Public Relations, and to Uehara-san on behalf of S2ki Homecoming II attendees. With our Member Hapybrian acting as translator for Uehara-San, I read him my speech:
“Mr. Shigeru Uehara,
On behalf of members, your fans, and your friends, we would like to thank you for being here today. You may not realize, but because of your Honda S2000, you have created an addiction, and a social network.
There are thousands and thousands of people that surf S2ki.com everyday because of their enthusiasm for the car, and the friendships they have accomplished. The discontinuation of your Honda S2000 is not a demise of this open sports car, but it now becomes a legend amongst the S500, S600 and S800.
We are here to help you celebrate your 36 years of work and dedication to Honda. Your work, is admired by all the people here today and people from all over the world. Your accomplishments of the Honda NSX and Honda S2000 made you a Legend in the Japanese Automotive Industry.
You have created a legacy that is far from being matched.
On Behalf of the entire S2000 community, we would like you to accept our gift today.”
Uehara-San then took the stage and shared his heart-felt words with the gathering. His prepared 4-5 minute speech, captured the attention of all of us as we listened in rapt attention. For those that could not attend HC II, you may see his speech below.
I’d like to use this opportunity to thank all the members, Uehara-san, Team Leaders, Staff, Security and everyone at American Honda that made the dream that was Homecoming II come true.
I have since received many emails, phone calls, and PM’s asking me if there is going to be a Homecoming 3. To all those people I’d ask that they keep the fire burning and the Spirit of the Honda S2000 alive. Please continue to believe in the POWER OF DREAMS. Dream the impossible, for it will come true some day.
Your S2Ki Homecoming Host,
Click here to see pictures from S2Ki Homecoming II
NOTE: S2KI welcomes the opinions of its members on the S2000 and on all topics related to the S. Should you feel the creative urge to pen a few words then by all means do so and PM Energetic, Aashish2 or Onehots2k OR send us links to what you would like us to write about and we will feature you (or your community) on the S2KI Home Page.