SUN FILE PHOTO
This 1934 Ford Cabriolet, owned by former Holmes Beach
City Commission Don Howard, was a winner in last years
auto show at the Bayfest. Organizer Bill Mergens hopes
to have up to 100 entries for this years show.
By Tom Vaught
sun staff writer
ANNA MARIA If you come to the Sixth Annual Bayfest
on Saturday, Oct. 21, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Pine Avenue,
you might think youre looking at a Beach Boys album
Organizers of the event, sponsored by the Anna Maria Island
Sun, are expecting more antique and classic cars on display
this year. Bill Mergens is in charge of recruiting the autos,
which have lined the street in fall fests past, and he is
hoping to get at least 100 of them this year.
"Weve got around 60 cars signed up so far and
we hope to have around 100," Mergens said last Saturday.
The vehicles will be judged and awards will be given to
the winners before they disband and leave around 3 p.m.
Last year, former Holmes Beach City Councilman Don Howard
was one of the winners with his 1934 Ford hot rod. Howard,
who lives in Palmetto with his wife, Nancy, is a past president
of the Anna Maria Island Chamber of Commerce, which is also
For local car owners, pre-registration is required. To do
so, call Mergens at 920-2277.
Some of the vehicles were souped up versions of old cars
and trucks, others were perfectly restored antiques and
there were even a few more modern, high-performance vehicles
"The thing about these cars is the fact that nearly
everyone has a story about an old car that he or she might
see there," Mergens said. "It gives the guys a
chance to look them over while the wife is looking at stuff
at the arts and crafts booths."
In addition to looking like a Beach Boys album, you might
have the chance to hear the popular 60s group as there will
be a disc jockey there to play oldies.
The cars will be on display near Gulf Drive on Pine Avenue,
across the street from Anna Maria City Hall. Moving down
Pine Avenue toward the city pier, there will be retail and
arts and crafts booths, booths for not-for-profit groups,
a food court near Roser Memorial Community Church and live
music and dining near the pier. Across the street will be
the childrens play area with games, a touch tank and
a kids stage.
Bayfest is the first festival of the season and it attracts
vendors and performers from around the area. Admission is
free, and residents are urged to take the trolley to avoid
looking for parking spaces.
Bayfest is an opportunity to find unique gifts and decorations
while tasting the best from local area food outlets, listening
to live music and reliving those days when driving a deuce
coupe or woody was the only way to get to the beach.
For vendor information, call Cindy Thompson at 761-4766
or the Chamber at 779-9412.