The International Amphicar Owner’s Club National Swim In was held July 25-29 in Celina, Ohio.
The “Swim-In” was held in conjunction with the 50th anniversary celebration of the last production Amphicar. An attempt was successfully made to gather the largest number of Amphicar’s at one location plus, hopefully, will make it into the Guinness World Records. Previously, the largest gathering of Amphicars to date was 64 vehicles. There were approximately 240 club members and 78 Amphicars plus two Panther watercars in attendance. The group photo shows 72 Amphicars. A couple cars were DOA or had to leave early and did not make it to the photo shoot.
The city of Celina, Ohio opened its arms and embraced the entire Amphicar community for this special weekend. Police escorts whisked the group through traffic and red lights to various gathering spots. The Amphicar Club was the Grand Marshall of their parade. Thousands of people lined the “Hot Hole” for the big Splash-in of all the Amphicars. The Amphicar owners gave rides to literally hundreds of people and $5,000 was raised for the C.A.L.L. Ministries Food Bank in Celina”. In addition the club continued its tradition of giving rides to the seniors, staff and families at the Otterbein Retirement Community. The Swim-in featured hours of “Swimming” and a tour of Grand Lake St. Mary’s, both from the shore and the water. A night Swim capped off one of the evenings events.
2019 will mark 20 years IAOC has held their national Swim In at Celina, Ohio. Why Celina? There are boat ramps galore into the beautiful Grand Lake St. Mary’s. Around 1999 longtime club member, “Bilgemeister” had a hunch that Celina might be quite close to the actual center of the Amphicar World given the geographic distribution of club members. The “Bilgemeister” agreed to determine the actual exact and true “Center of the Amphicar World” mathematically utilizing the average of the geographic locations (latitude and longitude) of all of its members worldwide. The results are surprising. After translating the zip codes, postal codes and other geographic information of each and every club member into decimalized latitude and longitude coordinates and other geographic references it was determined that the actual and true center (within one degree) of the Amphicar world was Celina, Ohio. Plans are underway for next year’s 20th Celina anniversary celebration along with other numerous swim in’s held throughout the Amphicar community.
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