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Downtown Ocean Springs sees big business during Cruisin’ the Coast

In Ocean Springs, the party lasted for a few days as streets were closed off to allow the vintage rides to park, bringing thousands to the downtown area.
Published: Oct. 11, 2021 at 6:08 AM CDT
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OCEAN SPRINGS, Miss. (WLOX) - With nearly 10,000 cars registered for Cruisin’ the Coast this year and even more visitors, it was a record-breaking year for the annual car show.

In Ocean Springs, the party lasted for a few days as streets were closed off to allow the vintage rides to park, bringing thousands to the downtown area.

By Sunday evening, the crowds had cleared out but the impact of their visit left its mark.

“We look forward to this every year,” said Gayle Jones, the owner of Poppy’s.

Jones said her sales over the week were some of the highest she’s ever seen during the event.

“People are wandering. They’re going into all these great shops, and they’re ready to get out and find unique things and spend money. And it’s just good for us,” said Jones.

“I think this has probably been our biggest year yet,” said Amanda Mavar-Schmidt, the owner of the Wild Flier.

Wild Flier is a beach shop that’s been in the community for about a decade. This year’s Cruisin’ business was much anticipated after the last few years.

“The past two years, we’ve had storms that have ran the cruisers out of town so this weekend has just been beautiful,” said Mavar-Schmidt. “When you have weather like this, it just brings people out. So, I mean, we had a lot of things working in our favor.”

Under the clear, sunny skies, many cruisers and visitors also cooled off at Pop Brothers.

“Most definitely the cars being parked on the side of the road brought a lot of people’s eyes to the shop,” said Pop Brothers team member Dion Ruiz.

Ruiz said sales this weekend were “double, if not triple” their average.

“It was very shocking to see how popular the area got in comparison to the weekends that I do work, but it was really nice,” said Ruiz.

Every few years, Cruisin’ the Coast conducts an economic impact study to see just how much of an effect the effect has on local businesses. The results of that study are expected in a couple of months.

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