Business owners to push back against Hot Rods’ organizer
By Miles Smith
Downtown business owners appear prepared to push back against a request from Hot Rods and Hatters founder Joel Gammage for road closures that begin at 6 p.m. Friday, Feb. 1.
Hot Rods and Hatters is scheduled to run Feb. 1-2 in downtown Lockhart. Gammage said more than 1,200 classic cars were on display at last year’s car show and music festival, and expected that number to climb in 2019.
At a Lockhart City Council meeting on Nov. 20, Gammage asked council members to agree to the 6 p.m. closure to allow car show participants to park and set up without navigating traffic, but the council told him they would come to a decision on Dec. 18 to give business owners time to discuss the proposal and provide feedback.
The nonprofit Lockhart Downtown Business Association met Friday and agreed it would ask the city to close the streets at midnight Saturday when the council meets on Dec. 18.
The Hot Rods organizer’s request conflicts with downtown Lockhart’s first Friday event. The square usually sees more foot traffic and vehicles parking during first Friday events.
“That event doesn’t own our square,” said Market Street Café owner Sutton VanGunten. “We own it.”
Downtown Business Association president Bobby Herzog agreed.
“Downtown is going to get better and better regardless of this event,” he said.