It was in 2016 that a few Pattaya classic car enthusiasts met up in a Jomtien area German restaurant. This month, a much larger collection of auto fans returned to the same place to toast the Classic Car Friends club’s fifth anniversary.
President Jo Klemm was the man behind the first get-together at the Iss Was Beer Garden Restaurant and he still shepherds the club through a schedule of shows, meetings, workshops and charity fundraisers.
The March 5 celebration began with a one-man-band providing the music and a pig-on-a-spit, with festivities wrapping up at midnight. Sixty-two guests relaxed in the outside beer garden atmosphere, enjoying the food and, of course, the classic cars parked outside.
Winston and Sukanya Gale of the Riviera Group together with Peter Malhotra, managing director of the Pattaya Mail and many friends and sponsors attended the auspicious occasion. Classic Car Friends Pattaya and members of Rotary clubs in Pattaya helped the club raise funds by bidding for two bottles of wine which were donated by Ray Whitley owner of VinestoVino raising 6100 baht for charity.
Classic Car Friends Pattaya began with just seven vintage auto lovers but has grown to more than 300 Thai and foreign contacts all over Thailand. Of those, 35 live in or around Pattaya and 75 in Bangkok.
In 2017 and 2019, the club organized two big classic car shows at the Asia Hotel Pattaya, each featuring nearly 100 classic cars and drawing more than 2,500 visitors.
With the shows and various other parties, the club has raised nearly a million baht for children of the Human Help Network Thailand Foundation. Funds regularly are collected at shows, monthly meetings, club-organized “fun runs” and workshops. The next meeting will be on April 1.
Anyone owning a classic car of all types all over the world older than 30 years is warmly welcomed. There are no fees to join or stay a member. The non-profit organization is simply aimed at sharing a common passion and helping underprivileged children.
For more information, call Jo Klemm at 092-753-9309 or email [email protected].