||Wow! Has it already been 11 years since we hosted the first one? I guess time really does fly when youre having fun....and that is exactly what the Beach Blast is all about - getting together with fellow enthusiasts for a fun time with a picturesque setting in Cocoa Beach. So in the immortal words of Spinal Tap - we turned it up to 11 for 2005! Ron Hassel of All-Midwest Sales, a major parts manufacturers representative company, was again the main show sponsor, and Advance Discount Auto Parts returned as not only a co-sponsor but also again as the main door prize sponsor, along with Valvoline and Eagle One who contributed items for door prizes.
This years show officially took place on Sunday, May 15th. I say officially because it has turned itself into a multi-day event over the years, with many participants arriving several days early to pack in a little more beach bum action, hit the local sights such as Kennedy Space Center, go on casino cruises out of the nearby port, and shop in the huge Surforama Superstore phenomenon that is the Ron Jon Surf Shop. As a result we host a Cruise-in of sorts on Saturday evening in the front parking lot of the Holiday Inn where everyone hangs out, and we start passing out the registration packets....which include a FREE T-Shirt with registration. Butch and Jennifer Johnston of WJBJ Cruisin With The Classics played the tunes Saturday evening, with Jennifer heading up the 50/50 raffle, as always.
Over the years weve been pretty fortunate as far as the weather goes. This year things held out well again, with only a 15 or so minute shower passing through on Sunday afternoon. Other than that it was bone dry, and very pleasant. Butch Johnston once again churned out the classic cuts, and Jennifer made her way around the grounds many times over selling lots of 50/50 raffle tickets again on Sunday.
As always, the door prize presentation got underway at about 3:00pm back on the first level of the beach-front Ocean Deck by Butch Johnston, where earlier a live band had been playing, plus the restaurant and bar was doing a very brisk business. The door prizes were followed by the awards presentation by Mike Kelly. Every year we put together what we feel are very unique trophies, featuring detailed die cast cars mounted on a wood base, with the event artwork and award designation on a beautiful upright plaque drawn by Adam Icenogle and printed by Daytona Trophy, who also handles the T-Shirt printing (the same company that does the Turkey Run event shirts). This year we went with 1/24 scale Plymouth Cudas for the Top 40, and a variety of 1/18 scale vehicles for the specialty trophies. The whole ceremony was wrapped up when Butch announced the winning 50/50 ticket number, much to the delight of the holder since it was a big pot.
The Beach Blast has been held at the same location every single year, that being the Holiday Inn Cocoa Beach Oceanfront Resort, which is located just 2 miles south of Ron Jon. Everyone was free to take full advantage of the Holiday Inns facilities, which included the big pool area complete with a Pirate Ship childrens section, shuffleboard, a sandbox area with spring mounted rides for the kids, and of course the direct access to Cocoa Beach. We have always limited the show to 200 vehicles, due to space restrictions, and it has sold out through pre-registration more than a month before the show date for years - as many participants tell us it is the most family friendly and laid back event they attend during the year, with lots of things for everyone who attends.
That brings up some exciting news! After this years show the Holiday Inn manager approached us about wanting to let us use more of the property, reserving more of the discounted rooms strictly for Beach Blast participants, and expanding the show past the 200 vehicle mark by utilizing an area we never have before! This was great to hear, as weve always had to reach more of a compromise with guests that happened to not be there for the show....and now the hotel has let us know they intend to have the car show to be an even bigger part of their spring lineup. We discussed some ideas on Monday with the manager, and have laid the groundwork for the proposed expansion, but we cant officially announce anything yet. We have never wanted to move the show from the Holiday Inn, since their beautiful property and direct beach access are the things that attracted us to hosting our own show in the first place - so it looks like well hopefully get to expand and stay at such a great location! A true win-win proposition that will keep us from turning away as many of the late registrants that weve been forced to in years past.
As usual a HUGE thank you has to go out to Bob Arnold and Tom Staggs for taking on the parking duties. We say it every year (because its soooo true), but without there help we couldnt pull it all off. A big thank you also goes out to C&D Golf Carts for lending us some carts to get around easier and move door prizes, trophies, etc. as needed. Throughout the course of the weekend it makes a really big difference.
Thanks again to all those who came to this years event, and to Ron Hassel of All-Midwest Sales and Advance Discount Auto Parts for making the show possible. Look for the announcement of next years show dates, and the opening of pre-registration in January of 2006 when we run ads for it in the magazine, and update the Beach Blast section of our web site. CN
Top 40 Winners:
Ken Beckum 1971 Mustang Convertible
Louie & Linda Zibrin 1929 Ford Model A Woody
John Canepa 1962 Chevy Impala
Matt & Margaret Mattingly 1967 Chevy Camaro
Linda Rais 1968 Ford Torino
Darrell Johnson Sr. 1964 Chevy Impala SS Convertible
Rob & Jen Fox 1970 Chevy Chevelle
Bill & Jane Nice 1947 Chevy Coupe
Joe & Jan Redondo 1939 Chevy Sedan
Keith Ward 1967 Chevy Camaro
Dennis & Mary Baker 1951 GMC Panel Truck 4x4
Don Shollenbarger 1957 Chevy Bel Air
Wayne & Judy Newkirk 1940 Ford Sedan
Scott Leavitt 1972 Ford Mustang Mach 1
Bill & Jane Von Hofen 1957 Chevy Bel Air
Jack & Joan Wilson 1940 Ford Coupe
Gary Moore 1932 Chevy Convertible
Mark & Kelcie Losh 1984 Chevy El Camino
John & Donna Rio 1965 Ford Mustang
Kirk Husselman & Kelly Page 1968 Chevy II Nova
Alex Glass 1957 Ford Custom 300
Jim & Lori Childers 1933 Ford Coupe
Pat Patterson 1966 Chevy Nova
Jerry & Connie Paul 1934 Chevy Cabriolet Pro-Street
George & Ina Pocquette 1947 Chevy Fleetline
Robert & Sandie Carpenter 1969 Dodge Charger
Bob Van-Horn 1940 Ford Coupe
Neil ONeal Sr. 1934 Cadillac Sedan
Gene & Barbara Price 1964 Chevy II
Bob Rodamer 1934 Ford Hiboy Roadster
Tim Takash Pro-Mod Style 1957 Chevy
Cindy & Edward King 1968 Chevy Camaro
Norman Decamp 1939 Ford Convertible
Ron Simmons 1934 Ford Vicky C-400
Gene Pike 1933 Dodge 4-Door Sedan
Chuck & Jeanne Kilgore 1979 Chevy Monza
Mike Murray 1956 Chevy Bel Air Convertible
Karel Watkins 1938 Lincoln Zephyr Coupe
Capt. Keith Heuer 1976 Cadillac Fleetwood Wagon
Mike Kofel 1929 Ford
Best Paint: Mike Pocquette 1937 Ford Convertible
Best Engine: Jack & Julie Anderson 1923 Ford T-Bucket
Best Interior: Tom Brown 1936 Packard 4-Door Sedan
Best Under Construction: Don Marcone 1941 Chevy 4-Door Sedan
Cruise News Choice: Gerry Houck 1955 Chevy Convertible
Best Of Show: Tim Brown 1967 Camaro