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Covid-Delayed Fun

The 20th Repco Beach Hop, Whangamata

by Greg Stokes

Covid 19 sure put the handbrake on 2020 and as a result is a year that many of us would rather forget. The worldwide pandemic created havoc through all aspects of everyday life including the fun we have with cars. Fortunately for us all here in New Zealand there has been a sense of normality or an appreciation for a "new normal". A Covid delayed Beach Hop in Whangamata was no exception back in November. Originally scheduled for March this year, the November event went ahead without a hitch and the vibe was positive as people enjoyed a sense of freedom with their vehicles.

Obviously overseas bands and visitors were down but the event was bigger than ever which shows how well established the Beach Hop is in New Zealand. With car enthusiasts converging to Whangamata from all over New Zealand, the Beach Hop kicked off on the Wednesday in Waihi with live bands, trade stalls and a wonderful community atmosphere. Thursday was the same deal but in Whitianga - sharing the Beach Hop love throughout the Coromandel. Friday was the annual Castrol Edge Thundercruise to Onemana Beach. Friday is a sensory overload with a constant stream of rumbling V8's and cool cruisers weaving their way to the beautiful reserve overlooking Onemana Beach.

As all this is going on, the town of Whangamata is pumping day and night with non-stop cruising and at night there are plenty of live bands playing at numerous night spots throughout town. Saturday is the big grand parade attracting phenonomal numbers of people to witness the carnival of cars which makes the Beach Hop a must-do event every year for many. You can check out the ultimate pass holders at the Ford Reserve or the Repco Pre 49 Hot Rod Show, Vintage Caravans, the Retro Market sponsored by Petrolhead or the Tot Rod car show for kids. Added attractions include classic car auctions, retro beauty pagents and the Hop Idol talent quest as well as vehicle giveaways. This year a Mustang convertible, a Ford T-bucket and a new Harley Davidson all featured in the prizes.

Sunday concludes with a vintage market day and the Top Ten shoot out to decide the Top Car, Bike and Caravan of the event. Things are all go for March 2021 for the 21st Anniversary Repco Beach Hop where a classic Ford Thunderbird will be given away. Visit www.beachhop.co.nz for further information and BE THERE!

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elocal Digital Edition – January 2021 (#238)

elocal Digital Edition
January 2021 (#238)

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