HANCOCK COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - It was quite the spectacle at the Mississippi Welcome Center on Sunday as a large caravan of Corvettes rolled into the parking lot. This is the first time in 20 years for the group to travel through the Coast, and it won't be happening again for at least another five.
The Mississippi Welcome Center's tranquil landscape and serene sounds of nature were temporarily replaced with the sound of pure horsepower.
"I've always loved the car, and most of these folks that are in these cars fell in love with them when they were kids," said Glenn Johnson.
Johnson is the captain of the southeast region of a club for Corvette owners and enthusiasts. He was leading almost 200 Corvettes through the Gulf Coast on a caravan to Kentucky. This is the first time the group has been through the Coast in 20 years.
"Nobody else has come through like the State of Mississippi," said Mike Smith.
Smith is the club's Mississippi Gulf Coast area leader. He said it's easy to get people excited about America's Muscle Car, but he has never seen a turnout like this one.
"This is the biggest welcome they've ever had. We had about 35 to 50 Corvettes from local people standing by here," said Smith.
The Hortons are from Diamondhead, and they love to hang out with other 'vette heads whenever they can.
"Great bunch of people from all over the country, and it's just a whole lot of fun," said Melody Horton.
This particular caravan will make another stop in Birmingham, AL, to join another large group for the rest of the journey. Melody and her husband, Charles, aren't making the trip this time around, but they say they want to in the future. "Ultimately, there's going to be about four or five thousand Corvettes that are going to pounce on Bowling Green KY," said Charles.
Bowling Green is the birthplace of the Corvette. Drivers from all across the country will celebrate the Corvette museum's 20th anniversary. This large of a pilgrimage only happens every five years.
According to Johnson, this won't be the last time the Magnolia State gets a visit like this.
"We'll see y'all next time we come to Mississippi, and thank y'all for the hospitality," said Johnson.
The drivers who stopped at the visitors center were from all over the southeast. Their next immediate stop is Dothan, AL.