On June 16, 2021 Fountain City’s historic Main Street was filled with dozens of vehicles participating in The Bandit Run. Begun in 2007 by Dave Hall of Restore a Muscle Car and David Hershey, this cross-country tour started as a celebration of the 30th anniversary of the 1977 iconic film, Smokey and the Bandit. Growing in popularity each year, it created an opportunity for enthusiasts to take classic cars out on the road. After a hiatus last year, they chose Fountain City as one of their 2021 destinations.

The rumble could be heard coming down the Great River Road for miles, headed for downtown Fountain City, where all of Main Street was closed to accommodate the Bandit Invasion. By 11:00 a.m. the majority of parking spaces were filled with the iconic Trans Am though a few other muscle cars were mixed in. Their visit was hosted by The Monarch Public House.

“We were contacted by the event organizer in 2020, the pandemic caused cancellation that year but we stayed in touch and were able to accommodate the group with lunch before heading to Elmer’s Auto & Toy Museum, the perfect compliment for their route,” states John Harrington of The Monarch Public House. Harrington said, “Everything went very smoothly.”

In addition to The Bandit Run participants, Fountain City’s downtown was filled with both local residents and dozens of out-of-town visitors enjoying both the cars and the camaraderie of other classic car fans.

To commemorate the event Mayor Gwen Katula issued a proclamation that June 16, 2021 was Official Bandit Safe Haven Day and presented a plaque to the organizers of the event. We hope ensuring a safe haven will encourage a repeat visit from The Bandit Run!