DOWNTOWN CHATHAM ONTARIO CANADA
JESSICA KILLORAN REPORTS
Downtown Chatham Ontario was bustling with activity this weekend, as classic cruisers from the region gathered for the 2017 edition of Retrofest.
Over 500 cars were parked in the downtown business district, attracting thousands of spectators. It is believed to be the biggest summer festival the in the community.
It all began Friday night with the OLG Classic Car Cruise which sees local residents break out their lawn chairs for a street front view of the classic cars that wind their way through the town ending up in Chatham's core.
"It's an awesome event said SST Reporter Jessica Killoran," who spent Saturday afternoon visiting with classic car owners along King Street and on adjacent side streets. "The streets are filled with cool cars, and the stores down here have been busy all day".
Local merchant Vickie Trickett, owner of Lady Blackbird Boutique, said her store was packed all day.
"A lot of new faces were coming through the door," said Trickett who sells a line of vintage inspired ladies wear. "It has been a really good day, not only for sales but also because a lot of people are seeing our store for the first time, and we are sure they will be returning. So it's been great exposure and it's great for the downtown".
In adjacent Tecumseh park there vendors and activities for families and kids, including a zip-line, 3D Twister, Giant Jenga, mini putt, as well as pony rides, a petting zoo and more.
Local organizers reported a robust turnout and were happy with the way this year's Retrofest turned out.
"The cars we saw here today were great. There was a real mix of everything from rat rods and old stuff life Model T's, to muscle cars and street rods," added Jessica Killoran. "They say Chatham-Kent is the classic car capital of Canada and well, it's easy to see why".