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Floods Hit Club Headquarters

Every so often the executives of The Chris-Craft Antique Boat Club will pose a question asking for your thoughts. Or maybe you have something that you would like to share with us. Step up on the soap box here.

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Brian Robinson
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Post by Brian Robinson » Fri Jun 13, 2008 12:07 am

Bill,

I sure hope you are keeping your head above water there in Cedar Rapids, things are looking pretty grim with the flooding.

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Bill Basler
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Post by Bill Basler » Fri Jun 13, 2008 12:09 am

Shot earlier this afternoon by a coworker.

http://www.mattmontag.com/flood/
Bill Basler

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Post by Wood Commander » Fri Jun 13, 2008 12:17 am

Bill, how close is your office to the floodwaters? Are those pictures taken from your building or location? Do you think the water will get to you, or has it reached it's peak yet?

Good luck! We'll all be thinking of you and praying for relief for your folks everyone in the region!


Bret
Bret

1953 35' Commander "Adonis III"

1970 23' lancer project

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Bill Basler
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Post by Bill Basler » Fri Jun 13, 2008 12:40 am

Bret and all, thanks for thinking of us. The water was projected to crest at 25 feet OVER flood stage. That was about 24 hours ago. Summer of 1993, the Cedar River went 20 feet over flood stage, and that was the worst year of flooding on record for pretty much the entire midwest. Currently the river is at 33 feet over flood stage...unprecedented.

They are now evacuating Mercy Hospital, first transferring critical care patients to Waterloo (60 miles north) and University og Iowa Hospital (25 miles south). They will then proceed with less critical patients through the night.

Mercy Hospital is at 10th Street. Cedar rapids numbers their streets from the river, so that is 10 city blocks on the east side at that given spot. Where our building is (and Club headquarter), the water is up to 12th Street and quickly approaching 13th Street. We are on 14th Street. There is a steady rise in the terrain to our building so I am keeping my fingers crossed.

The pictures that you are looking at were shot at about 4 this afternoon. The water has come up about 4-5 feet since then. They are now predicting that the river will crest at 35 over flood stage and that is supposed to be sometime tomorrow. We had rain again today. Tomorrow's forecast is for sun. So let's hope we peak and then recede.

Damage is going to be absolutely unthinkable. Thanks for thinking of us. It has certainly been a rough year in Cedar Rapids.
Bill Basler

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mattbyrne
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Good Luck

Post by mattbyrne » Fri Jun 13, 2008 8:10 am

Bill,

I was planning on visiting CR this weekend to visit my dad for fathers day. He called yesterday and said to stay home, lot of roads closed making it difficult to even get to the area. Bill hope you stay dry.

Matt

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Bill Basler
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Post by Bill Basler » Fri Jun 13, 2008 11:35 am

Matt, I am told the only way to cross into Eastern Iowa is Highway 20 up by Waterloo. At any point south of there the Cedar River is not passable.
Bill Basler

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Bill Basler
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Post by Bill Basler » Fri Jun 13, 2008 3:30 pm

Here is an odd tie. Our Chris-Craft universe cuts a pretty wide swath. I received an Email from one of our members, Jeremy Taylor, who is an on-air radio personality with KLWN radio in Lawrence, Kansas. I Emailed Jeremy back and told him that, at this point in time, our Club headquarters is in OK shape, and we are waiting nervously for the crest of this flood. I also expressed to him that, ironically, my wife is also a radio personality, and that she just worked until 1:00 a.m. reporting the status of this disaster. Jeremy then asked if it would be OK to call her.

Strangely, this is how Chris-Craft, floods, and our members throughout the world come together:

http://www.chris-craft.org/downloads/Mi ... nce_KS.mp3

Thank you all for your support during this event. We're hanging in there, and faring much better than many in our area.
Bill Basler

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Matt Smith
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Post by Matt Smith » Fri Jun 13, 2008 8:42 pm

Dang! First, a significant drop in Al Benton postings, and now this.

Sorry, I rely on humor in these times.. Al, please, explain to us why this is happening. Post something and make the world normal again.

Bill how was the cresting? It was supposed to hit around 8pm. I am reading that evacuations are through out the city. I picture you on a raft... a chris craft raft.. with your laptop, wireless broad band set up, floating around posting stories of bleached decks and chrome parts, while the world around you is under water. You are amazing. We are all there with you. Matt
1948 25' Chris Craft Sportsman
1937 16' Special Racer
1968 40' Rice Trawler
1968 11' Crab Skiff
2018 Hole in my head

WoodyBoater.com

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Bill Basler
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Location: Cedar Rapids, IA

Post by Bill Basler » Sat Jun 14, 2008 10:21 am

Matt, the water has crested, thankfully. Now our problem is no water. Wait, how can we be surrounded by water and have no water? Our cities water treatment facilities and pumping stations are under water. The water that we do have is what is held in reserve, so there is a strict drinking water only policy in place. FEMA started showing up by planes and helicopters yesterday. They are having a difficult time getting her by land.

http://www.kcrg.com/floodwatch/coverage ... eo=pop&t=a
Bill Basler

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Thinking of you and all the people in Ceder Rapids

Post by Bad Ass Boat » Sat Jun 14, 2008 11:39 am

I am very sorry for all the pain and anguish you and all the people in Ceder Rapids are going through. Did your house get flooded Bill? I hope not. I hope the waters start receeding quick. We Americans are very strong. My prayers and hope go out to all of you!!!!!!!!!!! Good luck to all of you in Ceder Rapids!!!!!!!! Roger Hockemier :(

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Al Benton
Club Executive Team
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Post by Al Benton » Sat Jun 14, 2008 10:44 pm

It's been busy lately, sorry for being so quiet. We feel badly for all of the flood victims in Iowa, it's a reminder of the way things were in '93 around St. Louis.

Thanks for thinking of me, Matt. I'll be back in action before much longer.

All that water is heading our way now. The crest here is expected around June 23rd. We are not expecting a repeat of '93, however, our boat show at Grafton Harbor later this month (June 21, 22) is officially canceled. We'll try to do something later in the summer.

Al

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Matt Smith
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Post by Matt Smith » Sun Jun 15, 2008 8:19 am

Allllllllllll! Your back. We are all keeping you guys in our minds..and hearts...
1948 25' Chris Craft Sportsman
1937 16' Special Racer
1968 40' Rice Trawler
1968 11' Crab Skiff
2018 Hole in my head

WoodyBoater.com

THE RAZZ
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Post by THE RAZZ » Sun Jun 15, 2008 8:51 am

Bill,
Reports in Oakland say waters crested last night there in Cedar Rapids. Hope that is true. All of us here are concerned for you and your family. Hope you are OK. Join us here if you need shelter. Always the best to you and your family.

All our friends along the flood plain- we all hope for the best for you. Be safe. Know you re all in our thoughts.

Jerry, Kate & Shad Turney

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Bill Basler
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Location: Cedar Rapids, IA

Post by Bill Basler » Sun Jun 15, 2008 10:12 am

All, Greeting s from Cedar Rapids.

I have one old Chris-Craft (The Blue Bomb) sitting in our driveway. I just picked up this boat from having a brand-spanking new travel cover sewn, just before the flooding hit.

Who would have known that this old boat and the new travel cover would be part of our water collection operation.

Last night, we used a siphon to collect about 10 gallons of water off of this cover from recent rains. We took the buckets in the house, boiled them, and strained out a few seed pods from the trees. That was our bath last night. It was enough to wash all of our hair (5 kids, 2 adults) and to sponge off the critical areas! One more odd connection between my old Chris-Crafts and what we are currently going through.

As you can guess, not having water is the biggest obstacle that my family faces, as they have shut off all wells and pumping stations in fear of contamination. FEMA and Red Cross support is just starting to happen as they have had a tough time getting here.

Personally we are fine. Our house is dry, and my office stayed dry. This is short of a miracle but we are fortunate. There are now reported to be well over 25,000 who have last their homes to a degree. Many of these will be total losses. We feel guilty being OK, in a sense, when so many are going to go through so much hardship.

We will, as a family, do what we can to help others get back on their feet. The damage will be unbelievable. There are at least six beautiful old churches underwater. Some are under water 15-20 feet, and these don't even lie in a flood plain. Our Public Library is under, up to the second floor. They were only able to get 1/4 of the books moved. The Cedar Rapids Museum of Art is partially under water, and this facility houses the Grant Wood collection. We have one hospital that was evacuated, and water at the doorsteps of the other. The National Czech and Slovak Museum (a beautiful, relatively new facility) is totally under, up to the top of the roof peak.

It is truly a mess. Last report was that this would go well into the billions of dollars. Not to mention what the flooding has done to other areas of commerce like the farm fields, many of which are under water or crops have been washed out.

As with anywhere though, people our proud and stronger than you sometimes realize. I predict things will be fine. Some things will never be replaced, but other things will come back better than ever.

Thank you all for thinking of us.
Bill Basler

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Bill Basler
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Post by Bill Basler » Mon Jun 16, 2008 11:36 pm

Wilson Wright asked me to post an update on the flood situation here. Water is certainly receding. Now the ugly reality is setting in. Emergency Management workers are going house to house now, checking for casualties, and obvious hazards. I am told that where the waters have receded is pretty disgusting...sewage, oil, gas, kerosene...you name it. entire basements are filed with this stuff. I don't really know the protocol for getting this type of mess cleaned up. I do know that there are fleets of emergency cleanup vehicles pouring into the city. The word is that many of the homes will have to be destroyed. Some have collapsed foundations or basements, etc.

Here are a few photos.

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Bill Basler

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ewdahler
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Flood

Post by ewdahler » Tue Jun 17, 2008 6:35 pm

Bill - glad to hear you stayed out of harm's way. You are all in our prayers...

Eric
Eric Dahler
1959 30' Sea Skiff

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Al Benton
Club Executive Team
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Post by Al Benton » Fri Jun 20, 2008 1:22 pm

The photos of Cedar Rapids show miles of devastated property that may never be the same again, a sad sight.

The levels on the Mississippi River in St. Louis will be a bit lower than first predicted due to some major levee breaches just north of here. The water is over the parking lot at Grafton Harbor, however. Our Show was officially canceled earlier this week.

Here's the marina in Portage des Sioux, MO where my boats are (they're ok). The water was up to the top of the second floor windows in '93. It's about 8' deep in the parking lot now.

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Here's a couple more shots near-by.

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The statue is about 40' tall and is located on the west shore (normally).

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The travel lift is out of business for now.

Al

Wilson Wright
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Flood waters

Post by Wilson Wright » Sat Jun 21, 2008 8:21 am

Al:

It is a sad story for Midwesterners...Hope you come out wuthout harm or permenant damage.

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Wilson Wright
Executive Director Emeritus
Chris-Craft Antique Boat Club

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