Panhandle British Car Association: March 2015 Newsletter

PBCA masthead from British Marque




March 2015

President: Taber Tompkins,
Contributing Editor: Richard Lewis, email: bettyrichardlewis (at)

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?


  • January 24-Chili Cook Off at Spanish Cove, Al. Mickey and Kay Kay organized this event down to the last detail, and about 24 members and friends enjoyed the task of choosing the best among four superb chilies.

  • February 3-Breakfast at the Grand. This remains a very popular event, with folks just coming together for fun and conversation and the great food and hospitality provided by Manager Barb and all her staff, followed by the Show Committee at 11:30 in the Grand Library.

  • February 6- Fancy Friday Out at D Paul’s Restaurant drew 24 members and friends, all dressed up to enjoy the cuisine of a singular Pensacola restaurant. Thanks, Theresa Hemmert, for all your planning.

  • February 7-Pensacola-Atmore Rally, well-organized by Bill Moseley, saw a crowd of cars from several car clubs; antique, modern, American, foreign, al were welcome. This popular event ended with a great meal at David’s Catfish House.

  • February 11-Executive Board Meeting at the Grand. Continued work on the operations of the club, with special attention given to the by-laws, which will be presented to the membership in the immediate future.

  • February 15-Shrimp Boil at Bear Lake. Again, Mickey and Kay Kay prove themselves to be a capable team, serving up delicious shrimp, sausage, potatoes, and corn, all boiled together for a wonderful taste sensation to about 35 members and friends. Everyone brought something extra (YLC baked his famous Village Inn pie. Well, maybe “baked” is a bit of a stretch), and Carol Stewart carries away the crown for her lemon chiffon pie.

  • February 22-28- PBCA Caribbean Cruise. About 31 members and friends will set sail for the Caribbean cruise in what we hope will become an annual event. Bob Hensen and Tom Schmitz get credit for doing all the heavy lifting. Have a great time!

  • March 3-Breakfast at the Grand. Don’t miss a great event, full of good food and laughter.

  • March 3-Brits on the Bay Show Committee meeting at the Crown Plaza-12 noon. Continued work on the Show, which looms large in the horizon- April 17-18

  • March 6-7-Panama City British Car Welcoming Party and Show. Gulf Shores State College. This hospitable party and well-organized show seems to garner plaudits every time. Well worth attending.

  • March 13-15-Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance. If you crave to lust over cars you can never afford, this is the place for you. Eye-popping and mind-boggling, plus beautiful.

  • March 16-Regular Meeting at Sonny’s BBQ at 6 pm. Regular business, program, door prizes, and 50/50 will be interspersed with some upcoming Show business.

  • March 20-21-New Orleans British Car Welcoming Party and Show. This Big Easy-sited show always pleases as much as does the city. Go if at all possible.

  • March 21-Fairhope Arts and Craft Festival and Car Show- Set in the charming city of Fairhope, the show is primarily a “show your car” event, coupled with a quite remarkable Arts and Crafts event. Go if you can.

  • March 27- Fancy Friday Out- Location and details to follow. This is fun. Show up.

  • March 31-Breakfast at the Grand, followed by the Show Committee meeting. Fun and food, with the Show Committee making last minute plans as the Brits on the Bay Show comes on like a speeding locomotive. Show Committee members are especially asked to attend.

    For the moment, “Tha,tha, that’s all, folks.” Remember, never try to out-chase a cop in a MGTD.

  • Pensacola-Atmore Road Rally!

    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)