Cruisin’ Clearwater exceeds expectations

Photo by Sarah Affleck
Photo by Sarah Affleck
Photo by Sarah Affleck

To say the Cruisin’ Clearwater Mobile Car show was a success is a bit of an understatement, according to co-organizer Ryan Mackenzie.

“I was quite shocked by the amount of vehicles that showed up at the event. It was awesome,” said Mackenzie, who estimated about 110 vehicles showed up for the drive.

“The cars were filling up right from the get-go and didn’t stop until after we left. People were getting a little stir crazy so we decided to leave 30 minutes early. We had to do it in a few waves because with the amount of vehicles that were signing up to be there, we didn’t want to make a Clearwater traffic jam.”

The May 9 event, which was also a fundraiser for the Clearwater and District Food Bank, brought in about $6,525 for the cause, and Mackenzie said money is still trickling in.

A couple of trophies were also handed out for stylish cars and Jarilyn Southgate took the prize for People’s Choice Award with her Cadillac Coupe DeVille. Ryan Lopes won the Participant’s Choice Award with his 1967 GT 500 Mustang.

Mackenzie added it was pretty much a smooth cruise for all involved aside from a few people taking some wrong turns on the route and a slight mechanical hiccup with his 1968 Acadian.

“I ended up burning a power wire off my starter on the highway while I was leading the group. Luckily everyone in the group came running with the tools and we got it sorted before a fire started and away we went,” Mackenzie said with a laugh.

“Of course that’s the way it’s gotta go, right? It had to be me.”

He said if the COVID-19 situation calms down by next year organizers are hoping to make an annual stationary car show, but in the meantime, they’re looking at getting some locals together next month and having another cruise just for fun with no money involved.

“(I’d like to give a) big thanks to everybody involved as well as a thank you to the community of Clearwater,” Mackenzie said.

“It wouldn’t have happened without them for sure. It was awesome going around and seeing all the kids smiling and waving. It definitely made these last three weeks running around worth it.”

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