Car show adds new element to Seafood Festival
Like most popular events, the Matlacha Mariners’ annual Seafood Festival has continued to grow and this year it is sure to be bigger and better than ever.
In addition to numerous local seafood vendors, this year’s festival will include a car show. Auto and seafood enthusiasts will want to mark their calendars for Saturday to attend.
All makes and models of cars — old, new and restored — will be parked on the blacktop at the German American Social Club grounds as owners vie for several trophies, along with bragging rights.
Trophies will be presented for Best in Show, as well as for first and second place.
The first 150 cars to register will receive commemorative dash plaques. Individuals and clubs are welcome to participate and all are eligible for awards.
According to car show organizer John Jones, more than 100 individuals and clubs have registered.
“We will not only have great seafood and ice cold beverages and more than 300 cars of all classes, but we will have craft vendors, raffles, live music and a treasure hunt, as well as other kids’ activities,” he said. “This year we feel as though we will have something for everyone to enjoy throughout the day.”
The cost to participate in the car show is $20 per entry and pre-registration can be made by calling Jones at 669-9393 or by visiting the Mariner’s Web site at: matlachamariners.org
The car show is open for participation by individual car owners and car clubs of all makes and models. At this point, among the car clubs committed to the event are the Corvettes on the Gulf and Hot Chile Rods.
The Corvettes on the Gulf has 85 members who travel throughout the area attending various shows and charitable fund-raising events.
According to the club’s governor, Ron Gagnon, the club sponsors two fund-raisers to benefit local charities each year and to showcase Corvettes representing every model year from 1954 to present.
“Not all of our members will turn out for all of the events and shows we do, but since this is so close by, I am sure we will have a good showing at the Mariners’ event,” he said. “We support the efforts of other organizations as often as we can, and this is a good opportunity to support the Mariners and the good work they do on Pine Island.”
Registrations can also be made on the day of the event at the German American Club beginning at 8 a.m.
The Seafood Festival and Car Show will take place from 11 a.m.-7 p.m., with the awards presentation for the car show slated to take place at 4 p.m.
The Mariners will offer attendees chances at several raffles, including one for a big screen HDTV, a chance to win one of three different kayaks and a new Harley Davidson motorcycle.
Cash prizes also will be awarded for several 50/50 drawings to be held throughout the event.
The cost of admission is $5 for adults, and children under 11 are free.
Ample parking is available free of charge.
Live music will be provided by Pine Island bands the Yard Dogs and Deb and the Dynamics, along with other local musicians.
On the menu will be seafood specialties, including steamed clams, grilled mahi mahi, seafood gumbo, smoked fish, peel and eat shrimp, crab empanadas, coconut shrimp, lobster bites, scallops, calamari salad, chowder, clam strips, blackened scallop skewers, gator bites and more.
Some vendors will cater to landlubbers and those looking for sweets.
The Matlacha Mariners is a nonprofit organization based in Matlacha, and all proceeds from the event will benefit local charities on Greater Pine Island and Matlacha.