Over $200,000 Raised for Samuel’s House at the 10th Annual Speed On The Water Bash Auction

Event raised money for a local nonprofit benefitting women, children, and intact families.
Auction raises over $200k for charity
Samuel’s House provides shelter for women, children and intact families. Courtesy Speed on the Water

On Thursday, November 9, from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., thousands of partygoers in town for the Race World Offshore World Championships and Florida Powerboat Club Key West flocked to the Pickles Pub Sandbar on Greene Street for the 10th annual Speed On The Water Key West Bash and live auction benefiting Samuel’s House.

The R.J. Noble Company matched the auction earnings with a $100,000 donation, so the event collected over $200,000 for the local nonprofit that houses women, children, and intact families in a “safe and sober setting.”

In a first for the fundraiser, Race World Offshore president Larry Bleil secured a permit from the City of Key West to hold the auction outside on Greene Street, which was closed for the evening. Nolan Ferris and Todd Campbell, the event’s volunteer auctioneers and passionate performance boaters from New York and South Carolina, respectively, used an MTI-V 50 center console and the Class 1 Monster Energy/M CON Skater raceboat, which were on display in the street, as a stage and backdrop.

“What you have done here tonight in Key West is one for the books,” said Ferris, who has handled the auction in the past and has done the same for other boating events. “I have always said that the performance boat community is the most generous group in the boating world, and once again you proved me right. You are all simply incredible.”

Ten years ago, the Speed On The Water Key West Bash began in Key West at a now-closed BurgerFi restaurant. It was organized and hosted by speedonthewater.com, a daily news website and video producer that has been covering the world of high-performance powerboating for 14 years.

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“We just wanted to buy burgers and beers for a few of our advertisers and friends and BurgerFi was the ‘hot ticket’ at the time,” Matt Trulio, the founder and co-founder of speedonthewater.com, said then laughed. “I think 30 people showed up and we were stoked. Now it’s a thing in Key West every year during the world championships and poker run. There was no plan. It grew organically every year, and we have an engaged, passionate community of speedonthewater.com friends to thank for that.