While organizers were anticipating that this year’s Lake of the Ozarks Shootout in Central Missouri might be a “down year” because of the pandemic, the members of the Shootout committee, led by Ron Duggan, were thrilled to announce on Saturday evening during a ceremony at Captain Ron’s Bar and Grill in Sunrise Beach, Mo., that they were going to be donating a record-setting $400,000 to more than 30 charities and eight fire departments.
Ron Duggan, second from left with several members of the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout committee, said he couldn’t wait to announce that the 32nd annual event raised $400,000. Photo courtesy William Holtz/Lake TV
Roughly two months after the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout presented by Performance Boat Center set the lake area on fire with an extremely well-attended 32nd annual affair, five of the committee members were on hand for today’s announcement at the venue that has hosted the top-speed portion of the event since 2008. In that span, the Shootout has donated more than $2 million—an amount Duggan admitted he never envisioned 13 years ago. Last year’s donation total was $357,000.
“We really didn’t know what to expect this year, but we set a pretty modest fundraising goal of $200,000 so we could reach the $2-million mark,” Duggan said. “To hit $400,000 blew me away. And now, of course, all I’m thinking is whether we can get to half a million next year. Who would have ever thought we could raise this much money? It’s a testament to how special the people at the lake are—we’re very fortunate to have such a generous community.
“I can’t say enough about what the volunteers did to step up and make the event happen with a lot less people than normal,” he continued. “We usually have about 800 volunteers and we were down to 480 volunteers this year because of pandemic concerns. But everyone stepped up and put more hours in and made it happen. I’m so happy we moved forward with the event this year. The community needed it, the charities needed it and obviously boaters around the country needed it since a lot of places were shut down.”
Duggan had some fun with the announcement when he declared that the event met its goal and held up the check presentation showcasing an even $200,000. He paused, revealed a second check for the same amount and got a big smile. Many in attendance were surprised by the $400,000, but considering roughly half of that was raised during the Saturday night dinner and live auction at Super Cat Fest, some expected the event to set a new record.
“The live auction at Super Cat Fest is a big part of why our donations continue to grow,” Duggan said. “Tapping into the generous people over there has been huge for the event. This year, even some people who would normally be there but couldn’t make it still called in and made donations.”
Editor’s note: To read the extensive feature on the 2020 Lake of the Ozarks Shootout in the latest issue of Speed On The Water magazine, log into to your account or sign up for a subscription here.