Smokin' Races Across The Sound Next Week

Rusty David has a lot on his plate. He's planning a Smokin' the Sound VIP party for 300 guests.

"I'm serving at 6:30," he told a caller, as they finished their menu for the seafood industry museum bash.

At the same time, he's orchestrating how 40 powerboats will maneuver around Point Cadet Marina next weekend.

"I've got about three pages worth of stuff we're going to be working down," he said.

"We've got to get cranes in line. We've got to get the barge here. We've got to get the floating docks here."

All of that must be done before the racing teams put their boats in the water next week. Thanks to last year's experience, David isn't worried about the second Smokin' the Sound competition.

"We've got us a good program going on. And it's wonderful to have just a few little things to tweak up," he said.

One of the tweaks has to do with a little used bridge between Gorenflo's and the J.L. Scott Marine Education Center, and traffic in and out of Point Cadet Marina. Last year, boats and cars barely squeezed past the Isle of Capri's garage.

So next week, part of this walkway will be removed. That way, traffic can enter the marina through here, and exit on the west side of the Scott aquarium.

If the weather is like Tuesday's sunny forecast, David expects $15 viewing locations along the race route to be packed. And according to David, that money is important if Smokin' the Sound is going to return to South Mississippi.

"We need the public to support this. It's a great thing," he said.

A year ago, a racer died during an unsanctioned mid-week practice. So this year, boats won't be allowed to test the race course until Saturday. The races are Sunday April 24th.