Your go-to source for performance boating.
HomeEvent CoverageA Cigarette Family Reunion For The Books

A Cigarette Family Reunion For The Books

What a difference 72 hours make.

For the past few days, Performance Boat Center in Osage Beach, Mo., has been as busy as it gets with 120 boats in town for its ninth annual gathering of Cigarette sportboat and center console owners at the Lake of the Ozarks. The event-record-setting turnout for two days of fun runs and evening parties demanded every bit of the focus and attention the Performance Boat Center team, led by owners Brett Manire and Mark Waddington, could muster.

And now the place is quiet, which at least for the moment is music to the ears of Manire.

“Not even a mouse can be heard,” he said. “I am sitting on my deck and enjoying it.”

Cigarette Racing Team models of different eras comprised the 120-boat fleet for the ninth annual Performance Boat Center Rendezvous for Cigarette owners. Photos by Jeff Helmkamp copyright Helmkamp Photos.

Leaving Performance Boat Center headquarters yesterday morning, the group headed to The Cave for lunch. A healthy group of Cigarette owners ran from the waterfront venue to Lindell Creek after lunch for an afternoon raft-up, which broke up in time for everyone to make it back to Performance Boat Center for the evening dinner celebration in the dealership’s showroom.

Michigan’s Burton Kirsten, who spends as much time as he can at his home away from home at the lake with his wife, Yvette, provided a moment of entertainment for the raft-up crowd in Jet, his 46-foot Outerlimits Offshore Powerboats catamaran.

“Burton came flying in and did a lap around all of us,” Manire said, then laughed. “He was like, ‘I hope Brett doesn’t get mad.’ The crowd went wild. He hit the throttles and threw a rooster-tail 300 feet in the air. It was freaking awesome.”

Yesterday’s raft-up was a hit with those who made it to the Lindell Creek location.

How loyal are members of the Cigarette faithful to the rendezvous? Just before the event, Southern California’s Dan Ellis sold his 2010 model-year 42X Lip-Ship Edition V-bottom. But he came anyway.

“Brett hooked me up on Friday with a customer in a 38 Top Gun they had as a trade-in,” Ellis said. “Yesterday, Tank Sears and I went in Brett’s personal pontoon boat.

Just because the Lake of the Ozarks is an inland waterway doesn’t mean conditions can’t get sporty, especially for a 120-boat event on a mid-June weekend.

“I’m feeling a little fuzzy this morning, but it’s been a great time,” he added.

Like Ellis, Sears came all the way from the Golden State to enjoy the event. Also like Ellis, he arrived without a boat—Sears left his Cigarette 35 Café Racer back home. But he did bring his step-daughter, Taylor Barrett, who is married to Adrian Barrett of Lake Havasu City, Ariz.-based Barrett Custom Marine.

This year’s Rendezvous for Cigarette Owners was the first to stop at The Cave.

“We got the ‘longest travel’ award even though we didn’t bring a boat,” Sears said. “It was in combination with thanking Adrian for helping Brett out and working together with Performance Boat Center this year at the Desert Storm Poker Run. We rode with Kelly Cook in his 42 Tiger on Friday, but unfortunately it blew an engine. But Brett was gracious enough to allow our crew to use his personal pontoon boat to get out on the water and make it to The Cave and to the raft-up.

“It was a fantastic run, as always,” he continued. “The Performance Boat Center crew does an amazing job putting this run together—everything goes smoothly, everyone is relaxed and stress-free. Plus, the Lake of the Ozarks is the perfect spot for everyone to meet up from all over the country. We hung out with friends from New Jersey, Florida, Ohio, Canada, Tennessee and California. The run really is about the people and seeing everyone. The display of awesome Cigarettes is just the cherry on top.”

previous arrow
previous arrow
next arrow
next arrow

The array of immaculate vintage and new Cigarette models in the run was remarkable.

Also boat-less for the event as he won’t take delivery of his new Cigarette 42 Auroris center console powered by four Mercury Racing 500R engines until the Boyne Thunder Poker Run July 7-8 in Boyne City, Mich., was Ron Szolack. He caught a ride yesterday with friends Todd and Danielle Fountain in their 41 Nighthawk.

But not having a boat of his own in the mix didn’t matter to the well-known high-performance powerboat enthusiast.

Stu Jones of the Florida Powerboat Club and his wife, Jackie, enjoyed the event for the first time in Top Gun Flight 1130, their Cigarette 38 Top Gun.

“This was the best one yet,” said Szolack, who is building a home at the lake and has another place in South Florida. “It’s hard to believe Brett and his crew can up their game, but they just keep coming up new stuff to keep you on your toes. The Cave is bad-ass.

“It’s all about the people, of course, with the common artery of all owning the same brand and having the same passion,” he added. “It’s just like Skaterfest, only bigger. I met a lot of new people this time who were really cool. Plus, it was nice to hang around with my (Florida) neighbor Stu Jones. It was his first time here for this event.”

Said new Cigarette 42 Auroris owner Ron Szolack, who sported his new Speed On The Water board shorts, “This was the best one yet.”

Most of the Cigarette rendezvous circus is already rolling out of town today. Yesterday’s hot and humid weather, such is Central Missouri in June, has given way to what could end up as a rainy day.

The Performance Boat Center crew can take the day to exhale before another busy week begins.

previous arrow
previous arrow
next arrow
next arrow

Yesterday’s raft-up was the most successful in the event’s nine-year history.

“This is the best group of boating people I’ve ever been around,” Manire said. “Zero issues, no complaints, no drama—just fun.”

Next up for the dealership is its Outboard Fun Run, which is set for July 21, followed by the dealership’s events around the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout—Performance Boat Center is the presenting sponsor for the 35th annual event—August 19-27.

For now, at least, the Performance Boat Center crew is enjoying the quiet.

The annual Cigarette happening is all about the brand-loyal people involved.

Related stories
Photo Essay: A 120-Pack Of Cigarettes Smokes The Lake Of The Ozarks
Performance Boat Center Rendezvous For Cigarette Owners At 117 Entries
Performance Boat Center Rendezvous For Cigarette Owners Heading Into Year No. 9
Inside The Mercury Racing 500R Outboard Engine
Florida Powerboat Club Head Pumped On Ambitious 30th Anniversary Summer Poker Run Tour
Cigarette Owners Beat The Heat To Set Record At Performance Boat Center Rendezvous
Cigarette Owners Descending On Performance Boat Center
Performance Boat Center Named Presenting Sponsor For Race World Offshore Key West Worlds
Inside SOTW Mag: Out Of This World At The 2021 Cigarette Owners Rendezvous
Two Thumbs Up For Another Record-Breaking Cigarette Owners Rendezvous