Here we go again
by Richard Lewis
“Here we go again, about to take that ride again, all starry eyed again, taking a chance…”
Taking a chance, that’s for sure. This is what we do every year when we begin, as we did this month, to plan for the April 26-27, 2019 “Brits on the Bay” annual car show, our 27th event. But we rely on a couple of old saws like “Hope springs eternal in the human breast” and “If you build it, they will come” to see us through.
If you build it they will come. That has been our main mantra for the last 27 years, and it’s been a solid one. Over the years we have seen our show grow from a handful of cars, mostly local, to as many as 150 cars from far-away Michigan, Tennessee, Ohio, New York, New Jersey, and the list goes on. We have built it and they have come. And we have built it well.
We have had Friday special tours like visits to Fort Barrancas, the tour of downtown Pensacola, tours of the Pensacola Naval Museum, rallies and others. Last year we really shined brightly with the 2018 tour of the Pensacola Naval Museum’s Repair Facility, where exhibits come for restorations and repairs. Upcoming for 2019, we will have tours of the Flight Towers at Pensacola International Airport, including the Tower Control and Radar Control Facility. Since space and parking are issues, there will be three sessions and a shuttle at the airport. Due to time and space constraints, the tours on the 26th will be limited to our visiting guests. There will be tours set up for PBCA members at a later date and details will be announced by the usual e-mails.
Both the 2018 and the upcoming 2019 events are all due to the diligence of Cameron Leonard, who has singlehandedly made last year’s happen and will also shine with next year’s. In the past, we have built the best Friday Night Welcome Party imaginable, with spectacular food and drink, bagpipes, gifts, horrible jokes — and wait, there’s more, such as former prize winning cars on display — as well as prime examples of the show’s featured marques. And this list goes on, too, all thanks to Bob Manske and his outstanding committee of party planners.
Saturday’s show will shine as always. Superbly led by Chair Tom Schmitz and aided by the able Assistant Chair, Liz Maynard, and the loyal but raucous Show Committee, it too will meet the high standards already set by Tom (who has led the group since Hector was a pup, how many years is lost to history), Liz and the committee.
Features like the raffle, 50-50 and door prizes add a little chance to the event, but the real attraction is the beautiful cars coming from nearby Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, Louisiana and of course Florida, as well as much of the rest of the nation. If you love British cars, you cannot be disappointed. See you there.
July 14 — Mike Darby’s Garage Tour, organized by Fred Veenschoten. Mike opened his facility to all to tour a working garage specializing in repair and restoration of British cars. This fully-equipped garage has seen hundreds of British cars in various conditions come out functional and beautiful, due to Mike’s extraordinary skills. Thanks to both Fred and Mike for this well-attended event.
July 22 — Annual Pig Roast at Tom Schmitz’s home. As always this drew a crowd for great pork, wonderful side dishes and delightful desserts. Jeanne Schmitz’s absence was acutely felt, but we were lucky to have her as long as we did. Jeanne, you are sorely missed by all and especially Tom.
August 11 — Breakfast at the Grand and the first Show Committee meeting to plan for the April 26-27, 2019 Brits on the Bay show. We got off to a great start. Monthly meetings will be held right up to the show date.
August 20 — PBCA monthly meeting at Sonny’s BBQ. The usual hijinks, business and fun, ending with door prizes and a 50-50. Upcoming events
September 4 — Breakfast at the Grand and Show Committee meeting. Good food, conversation and planning for the 2019 show.
September 12 — Executive Board meeting. Planning for club activities and issues. All are welcome.
September 14-15 — EMC’s “Brits on the Bay” show in Natchez, Miss., usually a great event. Details via e-mail.
September 17 — PBCA monthly meeting. Fun, business, an update on show progress, etc.
September 22 — Dog Day Rally and lunch, for the benefit of the Pensacola Humane Society. Lots of fun and food, and last year we donated enough cash and food to supply the Society with half a year’s food. We’ll likely surpass that this year. If you can’t come, make sure you make a donation. More details via e-mail.
September 28 — Fancy Friday on the Town. A great night to get out your best togs and shine. Details via e-mail.
Until next time, remember that buffing your nails on the road in a TR3 is not a good idea.
Stewart Reisinger’s MGB GT, 2016.
Danny Jones’ Morris Minor 1000, 2017.
Jerry A. Wise’s Jaguar E-type, 2018.
Fun at the Annual Pig Roast. Host Tom Schmitz (seated center) welcomes his guests.
The crowd chows down.