Chrome and paint shine at Spring Heat Car Show
CHOCOWINITY – Almost 150 cars, trucks, motorcycles and big rigs became the first reason since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic for more than 1,500 area residents to pour onto the Chocowinity Middle School grounds to enjoy fresh air, fellowship, and this year’s Spring Heat Car Show. Organizers of the event, a 13-year tradition of the Chocowinity Volunteer Fire Department, said earnings from the event will make up a large part of the funding lost last year, when the event was canceled because of restrictions related to the pandemic.
“We get financial help from FEMA and state funds, but we also have to match 50% of what the state gives us. The $9,000 we raised from this event will help us double our turnout equipment, as well as pay for (flame dampening) foam, vehicles, and extra equipment. Everything turned out great,” said Tommy Pendley, chief of the Chocowinity Volunteer Fire Department.
Pendley said his firefighters sold out all the BBQ sandwiches offered that day. “The weather was beautiful, the vendors were happy, and we heard from a lot of people that they were glad to be out doing stuff in the community. We couldn’t have asked for a better day,” he added.
Asked whether any changes are being considered for next year’s car show, Pendley said his event committee members are “trying to figure out how to give out more awards. It’s kind of hard to buy an award for 100-plus vehicles, but this year we had a lot more of the newer vehicles than in the past, as well as truck clubs bringing multiple entries, and even more of the older vehicles. It was also hard to break them all down by category, but we’re going to figure out a way to make it equal across the board for next year’s entries.”
A list of winning vehicles was not available at press time.
Pendley said that his department’s members are more motivated than ever as they plan for next year’s car show. “We appreciate the community for everything they do for this fire department. If it wasn’t for that support we wouldn’t be where we are today.”