Donald Farr
Former Editor, Mustang Monthly
May 1, 2008
Photos By: Greg Clark

North-central Florida in January can be an iffy proposition. It can be Chamber of Commerce beautiful with temperatures in the 80s, or it can more closely resemble the frozen tundra from farther north. For this year's rendition of the Mustang and Ford Round-Up at Silver Springs, the Chamber of Commerce must have special-ordered the spring-like weather--well, except for Sunday afternoon's rain--that no doubt contributed to the record-breaking attendance.

The Mustang and Ford Round-Up, hosted by National Parts Depot, has become a rite of winter for Floridians and East Coasters looking to escape the cold and snow. By offering free registration, which includes two tickets to the famous Silver Springs park, to the first 1,000 registered vehicles, NPD makes the deal too good to resist, as evidenced by license plates from Georgia, South Carolina, Kentucky, and other states to the north. This year's turnout set yet another event record with 1,103 Mustangs and Fords packed into every nook and cranny of the Silver Springs grounds.

In recognition of the Cobra Jet's 40th anniversary, the Mustang Monthly Editor's Choice Award went to David Garton's pale yellow '68 1/2 GT/CJ Mustang fastback. Unfortunately, due to Sunday's rain, we were unable to get a photo. Our apologies to David.

Previously held on the weekend after New Year's, this year's 14th annual Mustang and Ford Round-Up was moved back to the second weekend in January to provide participants a bit more separation from the holidays. That's the plan for next year as well, with the show scheduled for January 10-11, 2009.

Happy Trails
The annual Pony Trails cruise from NPD's Ocala headquarters to the quaint fishing village of Cedar Key on the Gulf of Mexico has become such a tradition that local citizens bring out the lawn chairs so they can watch the procession roll by. This year, 145 Fords, mostly Mustangs, departed NPD for the 1 1/2-hour trek to the coast, where everyone had a chance to shop and visit the local restaurants. Afterwards, Pony Trails participants were invited back to NPD to check out the company's car museum or put their Mustang to the test on a mobile chassis dyno.

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