Chamber Day and Evening 2017 overview
To err is human. To dive is divine. To err while diving can cause some big problems. A study has shown that 69 percent of diving accidents are caused by diver error.
So the last thing you’d want to hear is, “Sorry, there’s no chamber in the area so there’s nothing we can do for you.” Fortunately, that’s NOT the case in SoCal because, since 1974, we have relied on the USC Catalina Hyperbaric Chamber to bail us out when things go wrong. And once again, our Chamber is counting on you.
2017 marks our Chamber’s 43rd year of unbending service to the Southern California diving community. While our Chamber still gets about 50 percent of its funding from the county, Chamber Day & Eve have become the major source of funds to keep our Chamber available to us 24/7/365. And that’s why we hope you’ll participate in Chamber Day & Eve 2017 on Wednesday, May 3.
The first Chamber Day attracted about 200 divers and netted about $15,000 for our Chamber. Over the years the event has grown to over 1,000 participants by adding Chamber Eve, the Flying Dutchman, and the Chamber Challenge. Last year we raised just under $108,000 for our Chamber. We are justifiably considered the largest single-day scuba charity event in the United States and perhaps even the world.
It’s important to know that all monies raised go to the Chamber. No administrative fees are deducted from the proceeds, the participating SoCal boats donate their time and services, the manufacturers donate gear for raffle prizes, the Aquarium of the Pacific donates their facility for Chamber Eve, hundreds of volunteers donate their time, and you (hopefully) donate your money.
Here’s what’s happening:
• The main event is Chamber Day, which includes two dives at Catalina, plus a walking tour of the Chamber facilities at the Isthmus. A ticket on one of the participating boats for Chamber Day is still only $110 (plus $30 for food and airfills for the boat). You get the diving, the tour, a T-shirt, and five daytime raffle tickets.
• If you can’t take the day off but would still like to participate, we have the Flying Dutchman—a mythical boat, yes, but a big part of Chamber Day and the perfect option for those who can’t attend in person.
“Diving” the Dutchman gets you five daytime raffle tickets and a special limited-edition T-shirt available only to folks who sign up for the Dutchman. And we’re holding the Dutchman price at $95.
• There’s also the Chamber Challenge, which “challenges” our community to raise extra funds for our Chamber through direct donations (mostly $100 pledges, but also $500 and $1,000, and even $5,000 and $10,000). You donate, and then—we hope—you challenge your friends to match your generosity.
• Raffle tickets, anyone? Daytime raffle tickets are the way to go—because you don’t need to be present to win. Tickets are $1 each, with discounts when you buy more. Plus this year when you dive our participating boats in April, you’ll get additional free raffle tickets.
• Chamber Evening, co-sponsored by the Aquarium of the Pacific, wraps things up. You’ll have full access to the Aquarium, a sit-down dinner in the Great Hall (under the life-sized model of a blue whale), hear a few speeches—we try to keep them short—maybe win a raffle prize, and finally, cheer during the presentation of the Chamber Day check to Karl Huggins, Director of the Chamber.
As with Chamber Day, Chamber Evening tickets are $110 each which includes five evening raffle tickets and your chance at our grand prize—a week of diving with the manta rays, hammerheads, Mandarinfish, and other creatures you’ll find in Yap while staying at Manta Bay Resort.
For more information about these can’t-miss events, visit our web site at www.chamberday.org. You can sign up there using our secure server, or you can Chamber Day HQ at 310-652-4990.
Mark your calendar for Wednesday, May 3 and Chamber Day & Eve 2017.
Ken Kurtis is chairman of Chamber Day/Eve 2017.
Karl Huggins is the director of the USC Catalina Hyperbaric Chamber.