HANNIBAL | Steve Dungan remembered the days when he and his friends would head to Broadway to cruise and meet one another, so he decided in 2012 to pose the idea for a Throwback Cruise.
When he checked the interest level for the first cruise, Dungan soon found a strong response that's carried on through the ninth Throwback Cruise scheduled from 4 p.m. to midnight Saturday, Aug. 8. Dungan noticed the tradition of gathering and cruising downtown Broadway seemed to wane after the 80's, and each annual cruise brought back the atmosphere from decades ago for anyone — whether their walking or cruising with a bicycle, motorcycle, car or truck.
“It was just something we did back in the 80's,” Dungan said. “When we were out on summer vacation, we were out on Broadway every night, cruising and hanging out at the flea market parking lot, which is now the movie theater.”
At first, Dungan called the event the 80's Throwback Cruise — but Dungan said many generations and interests intersected each year.
“My mother and father were cruising Broadway back in the 50's and 60's, so it's not really just for 80's kids,” Dungan said. “It's pretty much for everybody just to come out, cruise, meet new people, hang out with old friends and just have a good night.”
The camaraderie of each cruise reflected the family ties of a sentimental project he's been dedicated to for the past three years.
Dungan is restoring the 1954 Ford pickup his late father, Dale, gave to him when he turned 16. Dungan is legally blind, and he's getting help from friends and his brothers as he completes each step of the rebuilding process. Dungan's father first applied a black paint job, followed by a bright yellow hue during Dungan's high school years before he sprayed the white paint with flames running down the flanks in the early 1990s.
“It sat from around 1994 or 1995 until 2017,” Dungan said. “I lost my father in 2016, so I decided it's about time to get it back on the street.”
Dungan's brother, Ronald, made another family discovery one day as he rode his Harley- Davidson by Willie's Body Shop in Madison, Mo. The Dungan family now has one of the dune buggies their father built. Dungan said his blindness will impair his chances to take the pickup or the dune buggy out, but he's looking forward to passing along the vehicles to his son, Casey, and his daughter, Carly.
“Somebody's going to get to drive the truck and the dune buggy — I just can't let them sit and go to waste — I've had them for too long, and they just need to get back on the road,” Dungan said.
Dungan encouraged everyone to come to the cruise downtown, emphasizing the event will be alcohol-free and child-friendly.
“It's just a good time to come out and enjoy the weather and enjoy everybody's company,” Dungan said. “You find old friends that you haven't seen in a couple years, and everybody's catching up. You get to look at everybody's rides. It's just a good time and it brings back a lot of good memories.”