Plenty of Variety for Bash
A CONVOY of 155 beat-up cars came to the end of a 3500km journey as they rolled noisily into Port Douglas on Friday.
The arrival signalled the end of the Port to Port Variety Bash for more than 400 “bashers” who spent nine days travelling north from Southport on the Gold Coast.
Local residents and tourists turned up to cheer on the colourful characters as they crossed the finish line to the sounds of blaring sirens and loud music.
Mackay couple Wayne “Mat Hatter” Webster and Robyn “Alice” Webster raised $154,000 for Variety - the highest ever total in Queensland.
They spent a year hosting events in their hometown, including a ball, luncheons and a car show, as well as “any other way you can think of raising money”.
“We do it for the kids,” Mrs Webster said. “You get to do a lot of good along the way and Variety is a good charity, so it’s worth the effort.”
In the past the Websters, who have been involved for 20 years, have dressed up as Batman and Robin, Santa and Mrs Claus, and even a Thomas the Tank Engine theme.
For the event’s 21st year, a total of more than $1.1 million was raised by bashers.
Variety Bash public relations manager Carly Quinn said each car had to raise a minimum of $7500 to take part.
“We have one lady who has done all 21 bashes in the same vehicle, a 1967 Holden HR,” she said.
Butchery owner Bob Kinsela, part of the Kallangur Cowboys, helped his team raise more than $50,000 through raffling meat trays at their local pub.
“(The trip) was rough in places and smooth in others. In some rough parts it shook the milk up and made cream,” Mr Kinsela, who was dressed in a cow suit, joked.
Money raised is used to purchase equipment for sick, disabled and special needs children in Queensland.
Highest fundraisers: Wayne “Mad Hatter” Webster and Robyn “Alice” Webster raised almost $155,000 for Variety
Oink, oink: Bob Kinsela was part of the fourth-highest fundraising team with more than $50,000
SisterHotHot look: best costume winners The Hornbag Sisters Ebony Rae, Edyta Misiak and Maureen Barnett arrive in Port Douglas