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Helen, Ga vs Sowo

In: English and Literature

Submitted By frankeymeals
Words 899
Pages 4
Helen, Georgia vs. SoWo
Frank Meals
DeVry University

Helen, Georgia vs. SoWo It's a quiet day in Helen Georgia population 580 with a 2.1 Square mile radius. With a town this small in size you would never think that it would be the meeting place of the Second Largest Volkswagen meet in the United States. We, Volkswagen enthusiast that is, call the meet SoWo or Southern Worthesee. The City of Helen nestled in the mountains of north Georgia and has a nostalgic feeling of being in Germany the infrastructure of the town is made to look like its sister city in Fussen, Bavaria in Germany, yes I said Germany which makes this quiet town of 580 people the perfect spot for a European car meet. The town of Helen has a lot of activities such as a lazy river where you can ride an inner tube down the ice cold Chattahoochee River that runs out of the mountains of north Georgia. The roads around Helen remind you of riding the twisting and winding roads of the Alps in Bavaria. You can rent a Chateau in the woods with breath taking views of the Appalachian Mountains. So you can see why this event would be held in Helen. For three days in the middle of May the town of Helen transforms into a different city not quite as everybody knows it. The rumble of hundreds of modified Volkswagen enters the Town in a Convoy headed to the Helendorf Hotel, they almost sound like bumble bees when hearing the notes from their exhaust music to any enthusiasts ears, but the indigenous people of Helen did not like it. Most of the citizens of Helen found the noise of the engines obnoxious and loud. This in turn made the citizens call the police and this started the war between the enthusiast and the local police department. What a lot of people fail to realize is when SoWo started out on 22 may of 2007 there wasn’t as many cars at the event. There might have been fifty cars and one hundred people at the event, but as word got out over the years and the event grew to what it is today over five hundred cars and two thousand enthusiast from around the world. As the event grew the Helen Police Department didn’t, which cause problems in the Town. Volkswagen enthusiast became unruly and began doing “burnouts” and would speed through the Town as if the law did not matter and this would happen year after year. So to combat this issue the Town of Helen enlisted the help of the State Patrol. The State Patrol was a lot different from the Helen Police department unadmitted liked watching a lot of the events themselves. The townsfolk of Helen started complaining and petitioning to the mayor of Helen as a matter of fact if you go to the Ciy if helen website ( and click on events that happen annually you will find that there is no mentions of Southern Worthesee. Why is that? SoWo has been bringing revenue to their little city either through purchasing food, clothing, or souvenirs to selling out hotels and restaurants since 2007. I know that seven years of SoWo doesn’t equal the forty four years that the Oktoberfest has been held in the City with most likely the same results except there is a lot more beer involved and it lasts for 3 months. I’m sure that many of the younger folks in Helen don’t mind the ruckus from the SoWo since to prove this I went of Facebook and looked at some of the ratings that Sowo received from the citizens of Helen. Donna Robinson — rated SoWo with 5 stars she commented “Really enjoyed the weekend with you guys I work at Helen Cellar/ Bavarian Bottle and Helen's Country Cafe! Good times as always can't wait to see y'all come back!” and this Comment from Courtney Jean Ruark she rated SoWo with 3 stars and this is what she had to say “My only review being a local to Helen is the fact that our beautiful town Saturday night had trash left all over the town. We don't even have that much trash during October fest. I enjoying seeing all of the vehicles and awesome people but damn have some respect for peoples home town.” So as you see there are mixed feelings about SoWo. Fast forward to August 2014 the first sponsor of the event Unitronic ( an aftermarket parts specialist for VAG (Volkswagen Audi Group) vehicles is now working with the City of Helen to hash out their differences and find a way to keep the City and the enthusiast happy. There has been rumor that the City has raised the amount of money it takes to use the City. Unitronic and the founders of the event has decided that they will have to move SoWo if they don’t find a resolution. There has been talk of moving the event on a plot of land on the out skirts of Helen where enthusiast can camp out or they can drive back into Helen and stay in the City. The efforts of the city to try and make the founders move the event has been thwarted and the event will stay in the City of Helen.

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