This year’s Z-Fest car show was a huge success with the most cars and enthusiasm that I’ve ever seen in the six years that I’ve attended the event. We had a beautiful day on August 17 so there was no excuse not to attend. That and the recent shift to have the show on Sunday rather than Saturday is better for most peoples’ work schedule.
Z-Fest had a new venue this year – The Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum just outside of Hamilton which is nice and central. This facility offered the added attraction of the museum displays and caf- eteria which appealed to everyone who loved having their cars photo taken with the vintage warplanes. It was also nice to have a beer with lunch. The day started early (7:30am) for the many volunteers who help set up and organize the parking guidelines. A steady stream of Zeds, Infiniti’s and other Nissans rolled in all morning and by noon we had 169 registered cars plus several more joined in after registration closed bringing the total closer to 180. The view from the museum observation deck was awesome to photograph and appreciate the grand splendour of our show.
All the feedback I heard was positive as everyone really liked the venue and commented that the event was well-organized. The day went smooth without any significant issues although we did encounter a traffic jam at the show entrance when a 30 car convoy of Infiniti’s, 350Z’s and 370Z’s arrived from the GTA. It was quite a sight as Terry Weston rushed to Bob Chwalyk’s aid to direct traffic. It was nice to see a younger crowd of Zed owners come out along with more Infiniti’s thanks to Will Hayward’s efforts to promote the show at various car shows and on-line forums. I think it’s important to grow Ontario Z-Car and keep our club relevant to the younger generation of Zed owners.
A new edition to Z-Fest this year was the addition of a Saturday cruise and social. Mauricio and I organized the road tour which took us from Waterdown up through Halton Hills, ending at Jerry Barvinek’s house in Cambridge for the evening pig roast. The weather on Saturday was less than ideal with rain but, we did have a good cruise and the rain cleared up in time for the outdoor gathering at Jerry’s. Z-Fest attracted participants from a good distance including several of our American friends from Roch- ester and Ohio – it’s always great to see those guys. Overall it was a fantastic weekend and gives us momentum heading into next year as we’re inspired to make Z-Fest bigger and better each year!