Twenty years ago, a group of people with a passion for cars saw the potential for an event in Shepparton.November 26, 2012 1:01am
Springnats fun for all November 26, 2012
Twenty years ago, a group of people with a passion for cars saw the potential for an event in Shepparton.
The town’s strong car culture was the drawcard.
That event spawned what became the Valvoline Autofest Series, now held in towns across Victoria, NSW and South Australia and supported by a volunteer committee of more than 30 people.
But organisers are disappointed Shepparton is now the one town that doesn’t have a street parade.
Spokesman Les Adams said the committee was not prepared to risk participants being fined by police for putting unroadworthy or unregistered machines in the street parade, so they called it off.
Last year’s street parade was also cancelled.
Mr Adams said the committee was frustrated by the local police stance toward the street parade, which was supported by police in other towns.
‘‘Every Christmas and Moomba there are pageants with floats, which are all unroadworthy, and they have people standing on top of them,’’ he said.
‘‘I can’t understand why a street parade is any different.
‘‘From here on in we will not do a street parade in Shepparton.’’
Aside from the parade hiccup, Mr Adams said the weekend was a success, with crowd numbers the highest in five years thanks to the dry weather.
He said the original motivation for putting on the shows — providing performance car enthusiasts a place to show off their skills and vehicles in a safe and friendly environment — remained today.
‘‘That’s what we’ve always strived for from the very first, a happy family environment,’’ Mr Adams said.
‘‘That’s why it’s alcohol free. If we wanted to make a lot of money we would have alcohol, but it’s not about the money.
‘‘You don’t go to many car shows still where mum and dad are there with the pram.’’
Today’s guest opinion column comes from former Shepparton resident and Notre Dame College alumni Joshua Nappa, who now studies economics and finance at RMIT in Melbourne. Joshua has written about the potential he sees in Shepparton reduce unemployment and help our retail sector.
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