GULFPORT, Miss. (WLOX) - Classic car lovers on the Coast enjoy volunteering to make sure all of the events run smoothly for Cruisin' the Coast.
They are a very important part of the annual event, and that includes a husband and wife duo who are key members of the volunteer team.
It’s impossible to manage an event as massive as Cruisin' the Coast without an army of volunteers. The crew, clad in familiar yellow shirts, makes sure everything runs like clockwork.
Mark Scairono and his wife Debbie are regulars on the Cruisin' support team.
“I think we’ve been volunteering for about 12 years now,” Debbie said.
The Scaironos work at the registration area at Centennial Plaza. It’s important to the event, critical to cruisers, and a lot of fun for the volunteers.
“I love it,” Mark said. “I take vacation one week every year just to be here. We work until we can’t stand up anymore, but I keep coming back every day.”
So many of the Cruisers come to the Coast year in and year out. Everyone, on both sides of the table under the tent at the registration site area, grows to know each other and become friends. While the work can be hectic, it’s still enjoyable.
“We meet lots of interesting people, see lots of interesting cars. We enjoy every minute of it," Debbie said.
There are an estimated 1,000 volunteers covering an array of events across the Coast. About 700 of them are members of local car clubs. Mark and Debbie are in the Antique Auto and Engine Club of Mississippi, so they are classic car lovers like everyone else.
The volunteers are really the heart and soul of Cruisin' and always there, with a smile and a helping hand.
“If you have any questions, look for a yellow shirt. They are going to be from Coast to Coast, state line to state line. They’re there to help out,” Mark said.
You can contact Cruisin' the Coast if you would like to be a volunteer in the future.