The Flip Side of the Coin
by Richard Lewis
Panhandle British Car Club is fortunate to have a wide, and almost wild, array of events related to the British cars which indeed are the raison d’etre for our gathering together, and that fascination with these cars seems to be entirely unsatisfactory unless it is shared with as many persons as possible; hence the many meetings, drives, rallies, shows, and on and on that we organize to satisfy our desire to engage others in our enthusiasm about these singular, quirky vehicles. Our club is so active in these areas that we have something going on almost every week, and sometimes multiple events. In fact, we have so many that it is almost impossible to get to them all, even for the most dedicated club member. What’s more, if we’re not offering it, we direct our membership to those others who are offering events they might enjoy.
Our operating approach is to offer a wide and frequent array of the aforementioned events so that members can pick and choose which ones to attend. No one should feel guilty for not attending them all, for it is almost an impossible task, although some are more significant than others. Any gate, we do indeed have a surfeit of riches in this regard.
Over the last couple of years, we have added a dimension to our club that is only related to British cars in that the persons who attend are mainly, but not exclusively, interested in British cars. However, the conversation overheard at these events rarely, or at least not exclusively, dwells on cars of any kind, but is just mainly the conversation of friends getting together. Your Loyal Correspondent refers of course to our First Monday of the Month Breakfasts at the Grand Plaza Hotel, where Manager Barb greets us as if we are members of the family, and our monthly Fancy Friday Out, where we choose a restaurant seldom frequented and, usually dressing up a bit, go out for a night on the town. We are especially fortunate to have in Pensacola a wide range of really fine restaurants, some quite pricy, but many with great quality and moderate prices.
We can thank Area Representative Theresa Hemmert for proposing and mainly organizing these two events, which add an element of friendly, neighborly fun to our club.
An additional feature, which has, in the past, operated casually among friends within the club, has been taken on a more structured form under the leadership of Tom Schmitz and Bob Henson. This year, and we hope annually, PBCA will sponsor a nautical adventure, that of an ocean cruise open to members and friends. At last count, about 30 or so salty travelers will leave New Orleans for multiple ports in the Caribbean towards the end of February.
Rounding out our array of friendly and casual events will be our annual black-tie optional Christmas party, whose roots are lost in antiquity, but nevertheless looked forward to with great anticipation.
PBCA is an organization focused mainly on its primary purpose, the preservation, knowledge about, and enjoyment of British cars, but these additional, more casual and general, meetings add a dimension to the club which makes it, for many of our members, their primary social organization. And with good cause, for at PBCA, there is something for everyone, and it’s always happening.
What happened while YLC wasn’t looking?
For the moment, “Tha,tha, that’s all, folks.” Remember, never try to out-chase a cop in a MGTD.
Rally Master Bill Moseley reported 25 clubs and a record 128 entrants participated in this year's Pensacola-Atmore Road Rally. Below are some of the photos he and others took.
Richard Bishop leads off the Mardi Gras MGs. Tom Oliver prepares his Ford Cobra. Impressive line-up. Panhandle Cruiser Melissa Hirtz's '58 Chevy Impala. Classics of all kinds meet at David's Catfish House. Rare-Air VWs. Photos by Bill Moseley, Wild Bill Tucker, and PBCA.
(Click each for a larger view)