By Jack Biddle
The three day Beach Hop from 23-25 March at Whangamata was a resounding success.
Extra effort went into promoting “Doing the Loop” and so many classic cars cruised from Whangamata through Thames, to Coromandel, then Whitianga and on to Tairua and back to Whangamata. A number took the anti clockwise direction going to Tairua first. The weather was kind and the roads did not crack anymore. For cars from Hamilton and Tauranga the journey is not any more difficult - just a few patches of one lane. For Auckland drivers, the route is much longer, but in a classic car, it is just an adventure. The Beach Hop put many pubs and cafes in a great mood. Smitty’s Bar and Grill is always the centre for classic car drivers and bikers when they come to Whiti - it felt like a party on Saturday at Smitty’s. This year the theme was more New Zealand Retro Car and Caravans and they came from everywhere. Other highlights of the festival which
concluded on Sunday in Whangamata included the Rock ‘n’ Roll march, packed street grand parade, classic car and boat show, retro caravans, Harley Davidson motorcycle display, bands and various themed markets. It was an event perfectly timed to bring much-needed visitors, hype, cheer, colour and dollars into the local economy around the Coromandel.
The Peninsula looks forward to the Whiti Beach Meet on Easter Sunday, 9 April from
9.00am to 3.00pm with Buffalo Beach Reserve being the centre of the programme
- auction, raffles, rides and a colossal gathering of classic cars. Sponsored by Farmer Autovillage and Coromandel CFM.