After hearing about it for several years my wife and I attended the 2016 Big Easy Mopar Show in New Orleans. How was it? I can tell you I have never attended an event quite like it before and we will likely attend may more!
The Big Easy Mopar Club in New Orleans really knows how to hold an event. This is much more than just a show. It all starts (for the attendees) on Friday. If you opt in (and by all means make sure you do) for the Friday tour/party you will not be disappointed. Let me give you a very brief overview of this day.
We (I estimate there must have been 150 people) all gathered in the lobby of the Hilton hotel we were staying at 8:00AM to get our tickets, beads and instructions for the day. In a blink of an eye we were loading three top of the line tour buses for our day of adventure. Because of our size the some buses headed off to one location and ours to another. The theme of the day was Mardi Gras. Our first stop was at the Mardi Gras museum/shop. Here we saw all of the props for prior and future Mardi Gras parades. Did you know that during Mardi Gras in New Orleans there are 55 parades during the celebration?
All of the props, heads and statutes you see in the parades were made at this location and are stored here as well as similar large warehouses all over New Orleans. We saw artists making items for next year’s floats already. My wife and I even got to try on parade costumes.
Next up was a bus ride to the Dat Dog for lunch. This was a real experience and great versions of hot dogs you can’t believe and all you could eat. From there we were free to spend the afternoon wondering the French Quarter, Bourbon Street and any where else our feet or trolley could take us.
Some headed off to bars while others went antiquing and still others wanted to check out the casino and still others had to do a cemetery or the aquarium.
The real party started with a rendezvous with our buses at 5:00. Once on board we were whisked off to a New Orleans park shelter where authentic Cajun food was waiting with a live local bad performing. But before we could even make our way to the food we were greeted with ladies with trays with shots of King Cake Vodka and Hurricanes! These ladies kept their trays full and continued to offer the free shots of happiness all night long.
At one point in the evening the hosts even put on a mock parade with beads and gifts tossed to the guests. It was a memorable day and event. At approximately 10:00PM we were delivered to our hotel knowing we and our cars were scheduled for the show field starting at 8:00AM Saturday.
Although we would have preferred to sleep in we were only a little late but most of the cars were already present and in place. We unloaded our 1969 Dodge Charger Nuremberg Daytona and commenced a little detailing for the judges.
Once the cleanup was out of the way my wife and I headed off to see what the competition had to offer. The show field was located on the shores of Lake Pontchartrain! Although the day was overcast with some brief rain there was no lack of spirit or camaraderie. The quality and variety of cars was outstanding. There was truly something for everyone.
We were very fortunate that our Daytona was recognized by Tim Wellborn as his pick of cars for the show. Since Tim is not only a recognized expert on Mopars and a true Daytona enthusiast, he is a celebrity in his own right as well as a collector of what is arguably the best Mopar muscle cars in the World. The Wellborn Muscle Car Museum has one of the best collections of Mopars anywhere. We also received a trophy for being the judges pick for Best B Body at the show. My wife and I were humbled and trilled with the recognition our Daytona received.