OCEAN SPRINGS, Miss. (WLOX) - The Cruisin’ the Coast stamping volunteers had their hands full as the classic cars came rolling down Washington Avenue to downtown Ocean Springs, an official Cruisin’ venue.
Louisiana resident Charlotte Spaetgens was there at the front of the line.
“You get to see each one of them coming down,” she said with a smile. “You don’t miss any of them.”
On Thursday, Washington Avenue was crammed with cruisers and spectators - some for the first time, like Tim Blunt from Iuka.
For him, Ocean Springs has made an impression.
“I think it’s great,” he said. “My wife really loves it. She says I can look in the shops, and you can look at the cars. So, it’s a good mix. It’s a good vacation.”
Cruisin’ fits well with the city's arts vibe.
“It is special. It is the only one that I wake up at 3:30 in the morning and go out there to get a good spot,” said Cruisin’ participant Will Spates of Gulfport. “It’s that down-home type style of block party. So we enjoy it.”
It’s also good for business with the restaurants and shops that are unique and boutique.
“It’s my biggest weekend of the year,” said Two Dogs Dancing owner Mickey Miller. “Peter Anderson used to be, but now it’s Cruisin'. “They’re both fantastic, but it just gets better every year.”
Mary Noggerath of Slidell is experiencing it for the first time and spending a little money as well.
“I love it. This is the best place we’ve been to since we’ve been out here,” she said. “Absolutely, because it’s like an old town where I live in Slidell, so we love it.”
Ocean Springs resident Harlon Crimm is re-living early memories.
“It’s so special here in Ocean Springs,” he said. “Everything is special. I remember the first time that I drove this street.
“I cannot really say how good it is for us here and to have this venue,” he added. “The cars come right by my house down on the beach but I chose to be up here so I can be even closer to them.”
The event sites will be open again on Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
You can also visit GulfCoastWeekend.com to check out all of the events that are happening during this year’s Cruisin’ the Coast, vote for your favorite classic cars, and watch features on some of the amazing vehicles you’ll see.