Herd of Mustangs take tourist spending back to Braidwood

Peter Norton 14 January 2020 14
A convoy of Mustangs

A convoy of Mustangs brought smiles to faces in Braidwood this weekend. Photos: Peter Norton.

It’s unusual to be thrilled about rainy skies and crowded parking for a lunch trip to the countryside but we live in unusual times.

Regional towns like Braidwood are struggling with the effects of the bushfire crisis and the longer-term drought. The Kings Highway on-and-off closure has blocked thousands of families from travelling through the town on their way to what is now a fire-ravaged South Coast. This traffic normally provides critical sales for the businesses in Braidwood and Bungendore.

As the region recovers from the fires, we are being encouraged to travel to our regional towns, to stop and enjoy their friendly hospitality. Canberra’s Adam Browne accepted this invitation on Saturday and took a herd of Mustangs with him.

Poppie's on Wallace

Organiser Adam Browne’s mother runs a business in Braidwood.

Adam’s mother operates Poppie’s on Wallace, a delightful old-style tea shop and gift store. Like all businesses in town, she relies on the summertime traffic to make the business viable. But the road closures have slashed takings by 89 per cent.

Adam is the proud owner of a red Mustang and a member of various Mustang groups on Facebook, so he simply invited everyone to come for a cruise in the countryside.

“I was expecting perhaps 20 cars, and at the Queanbeyan meeting spot I counted 28,” Adam explains with a smile.

The fleet swelled as it was joined in Braidwood by cars from Sydney and beyond. The final tally was 45 Mustangs representing all ages of the marque’s 55-year history and an eclectic mix of other enthusiasts with their Fords, Holdens, Subarus and even a Moke.

The car crowd enjoyed the delights of the town’s iconic stores. Suggestive comments were made about the ‘Love Rock’ at the Boiled Lolly Shop, and I can advise that the BLT on Turkish bread from the Concept Coffee Bar is well worth the drive.

“It is only a 45-minute drive from Canberra, and you get to enjoy the warmth and friendliness of the small town,” Adam says. There were plenty of friendly waves for the convoy’s impromptu parade along through the main street.

A cruising convoy of Mustangs on the Kings Highway.

By the end of the day, well over 50 cars had joined the muster, but the number of smiles on the tourists and locals was countless.

Donna from Braidwood Outdoors echoed the common sentiment of the day, and one which will surely endure as the recovery gets underway: “Not only did people come and open their wallets but they opened their hearts. We’re so very grateful.”

There were more than just grateful local shopkeepers, with residents offering cheerful greetings from the footpaths.

“Braidwood businesses and the town people were so overwhelmed and were so thankful to all involved. They have said not only had it helped financially but also had brought a smile and a vibe back to the town that hasn’t been there for months,” Adam says.

Washing your car and going for a cruise is normally a sure thing to bring rain, so the only disappointment was that the morning’s sprinkles didn’t turn into a proper downpour. Perhaps future day trips can break the drought?

The Kings Highway is reopening at around 4:00 pm this afternoon (14 January), so why not plan your own road trip? If you’d like a reason to go east, Canberrans Danny Phillippa and Shea Cara Hammond are planning a pie run to the Braidwood bakery and associated purveyors of baked goods. Look for the Braidwood Pie Run on Facebook. It’s happening on Saturday, 25 January 2020, at 1:00 pm.

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14 Responses to Herd of Mustangs take tourist spending back to Braidwood
Darren Ogden Darren Ogden 6:00 pm 16 Jan 20

Zoe Jacobsen i should be apart of this

Karen Schultz Karen Schultz 11:22 am 16 Jan 20

As a former Mustang owner I'm so proud of these members.

Corey Luke Bradley Carson Corey Luke Bradley Carson 9:39 am 16 Jan 20

Ryan Samuel Blundell Daniel Burton this where you guys did the good stuff and things for the bbq? Top stuff 💪💪

Leah Wales Leah Wales 10:40 pm 15 Jan 20

Well hello there, Russell Lorraine Derwent 🤣🤣

Annie Clarke Annie Clarke 10:29 pm 15 Jan 20

It is a mob of mustangs

Jan McGregor Jan McGregor 10:00 pm 15 Jan 20

Where's the rest of the Beatles Lorraine Derwent ?

    Lorraine Derwent Lorraine Derwent 4:34 pm 16 Jan 20

    Jan McGregor there were two, you just can’t see Jayden beside Russ. 😂😂😂

Jojo Kavcic Jojo Kavcic 9:40 pm 15 Jan 20

It was great to see..

Bev Lang Bev Lang 9:16 pm 15 Jan 20

Was lots of fun - thanks for organising :)

Sharon May Sharon May 7:47 pm 15 Jan 20

Mustang owners are the best kind of people Renae Gix Gordon 😁

Ron Ramsey Ron Ramsey 6:04 am 15 Jan 20

It was a fabulous day!

The Riotact The Riotact 4:44 am 15 Jan 20

Well done Peter Norton & Adam Browne. Exactly the kind of Regional touring that is required!

Karin Hagel Karin Hagel 11:05 pm 14 Jan 20

Geoff - Hannah would have had no problems spotting one there.

Frank Trapani Frank Trapani 9:27 pm 14 Jan 20

Out of churches true Earth Angels..Good on y'a guys..👏👍🇦🇺👌

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