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'This is our livelihood': Return of San Diego Bayfair brings boost to businesses

San Diego Bayfair
Businesses at San Deigo Bayfair
Posted at 7:30 PM, Sep 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-19 23:15:23-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -  — One of the largest events in the city is in full swing this weekend.

This year, the Homestreet Bank San Diego Bayfair returned to Mission Bay after being canceled due to the pandemic.

“We have people come in from all over the country and all over the world every year to come out to this event,” Bob Davies, Race Director of the San Diego Bayfair, said.

For 67 years, the San Deigo Bayfair has brought thousands of people to Mission Bay Park for a weekend to enjoy the spectacle of hydroplane racing.

"It's always two weeks after Labor Day and the reason they put that date in there is because summer was over, the kids were back in school, and it was going to be one last bang for the buck for the hotels in the area," Davies said.

Davies said it takes a lot of volunteers and planning to pull off the event, which made having to cancel it last year due to COVID-19 even more devastating.

“It was a very difficult decision and to be honest with you, something I really missed last year,” he said.

But this year, the boats are back, and so are the vendors.

For Norm Dravis and his wife, the San Deigo Bayfair holds a special place in their hearts.

It was the first event they worked as owners of Cruising Cones, LLC, an ice cream truck.

Dravis says they’ve had a lot of success over the years, growing their business into a franchise,

However, like many entrepreneurs, their business took a hit in 2020 when the pandemic temporarily shut down businesses.

“This is our livelihood,” Dravis said. “We know so many people in the food industry that were really down and out, and some of them have gone out of business.”

With the help of events like Bayfair, Dravis says business is picking up.

Since the Fourth of July, they’ve worked several events with bigger turnouts than the years before.

“We can go on living again. We can make our house payments. We can kind of get back to normal so I mean it means everything," Dravis said.