AN OPEN LETTER FROM MIKE HUDGINS, ORGANIZER AND FORMERLY FROM PONCHATOULA
The Bandit Run is a car event co-created by Dave Hershey and Restore A Muscle Car owner Dave Hall from Lincoln, Nebraska. It began as a celebration of the 30th anniversary release of the 1977 movie Smokey and the Bandit. The Bandit Run, now in it's sixth year, is celebrating the 35 anniversary of the movie's release and is expected to be our biggest event to date. Currently more than 280 people are registered and more than 120 cars. Registrants are coming as far away as Australia, Canada and California. In addition to dozens of Pontiac Trans Ams of various year models and colors, the replicated Sheriff Buford T Justice patrol car and the replicated Snowman 18 wheeler will be on the run. The Snowman rig is in memory of actor/singer/songwriter Jerry Reed and is a fund raiser for The Wounded Warrior Project, Mr. Reed's charity of choice prior to his death. Attached is a photo of the truck.
Reflecting on the movie, our route is East Bound and Down from Texarkana, Arkansas to Atlanta, Georgia. The route officially starts on May 12th with a weekend long event planned in Texarkana. We will travel to Lafayette, La on Monday May 14th, then to Biloxi on May 15th and 16th, on to Birmingham on May 17th then finally to Braselton, Ga on the 18th, where another weekend of activities are scheduled and co-hosted by Year One.
Our stop on Tuesday May 15th for lunch will be hosted by Kliebert's Turtle and Alligator Farm. We expect to arrive between 10:30am and 11:00am and will enjoy Jambalaya and a tour. We will depart Kliebert's approximately 1:00pm and have an escort by the Ponchatoula Police planned as we parade through Ponchatoula on our way to Biloxi. As a native of Ponchatoula and a 1985 graduate of Ponchatoula High, I am excited to bring The Bandit Run to my hometown. Mayor Zabbia and his wife have been invited and I hope the citizens of Ponchatoula will turn out to support us and see us off as we travel down Main Street. Please help us get the word out to the residents of Ponchatoula in any manner you see fit. We would love to have any media join with us and interviews will be made available.
The Bandit Run is a family event and sure to bring back memories of the late 70's. For additional information on The Bandit Run, please visit our website www.thebanditrun.com or find us on Facebook.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions,
Michael L. Hudgins