Toowoomba Nostalgia Run

The run out west of Brisbane to Toowoomba is always a Thunderbird Club favourite and a chance to catch up with our mate Scott from the bush who had been busy organising a day in a country town for us city folk. As you read on and view the photos you’ll see that his run was to be a day packed with nostalgia.

 We met at McDonalds, Goodna around 9am, some catching up over a coffee and a McMuffin, then rolled on out to Withcott at the bottom of the Toowoomba range where we were to meet up with Scott.

The meeting place, the Colonial Shopping Centre at Withcott was a buzz of activity. It was opening day for a new 50’s style café called “Cruisers Diner”. The Toowoomba Hot Rod Club, the Chrysler Club and the “Rockabilly Boppers” dance club were on hand to give the place a bit of support on its opening day.

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Then it was up the range to Toowoomba and the “Boogie Shack” in Ruthven St for lunch. We certainly picked a busy day to head out to Toowoomba. It was “Carnival of Flowers” weekend and the place was bustling with visitors and tour buses. Being at higher altitude Toowoomba’s climate is perfect for gardeners and the town was in full bloom. It certainly is a beautiful place. The parks, tree lined streets and unmolested period architecture is a sight to behold.

If you are ever in Toowoomba and feel like a great burger in an authentic 1950’s environment, the soon to be fully licensed “Boogie Shack” upstairs in Ruthven St is the place to be. Traditional rockers Lynette and Paul have done a great job setting this place up as a diner, dance hall and band venue in true 50’s style. Not only do they serve up great food but they teach Rockabilly dancing, host bands and cater for functions.









After enjoying a relaxing lunch at the Shack it was time for the highlight of the day, a cruise up to Picnic Point and a visit to Scott’s place.

Scott has been collecting vintage roadside relics, petrolania, motorabilia and 1950’s period stuff for some time now and has converted the lower level of his home into a retro Mecca. First stop was his corrugated iron lined double garage. Some of the delights included original petrol bowsers, enamel signs, oil bottles, an Indian motorcycle and a fully restored 50’s dodgem car.











What was once the rumpus room is now home to the “Tbird Diner”. The images will tell you more than I can in words, but from the 50’s style bar complete with a period cash register, black and white chequered linoleum floor, dining booth, Wurlitzer Jukebox and the neon and lighted signs you would swear you had gone back in time. The centre piece for me had to be the 1956 Ford Customline that looked as though it had crashed through the wall. This was an original car that someone had started to restore some time back which had been painted tutone red and white before it was parked out in the weather for a long time with no glass in it. You can imagine the outcome. The rear end was also sacrificed and is now an awesome lounge chair. Above the Cusso resides the icing on the cake, the fabulous “Tbird Diner” neon sign that took a friend of Scott’s over 8 months to custom make. This was truly an unreal experience. It’s not often you see such a large collection of this type of thing in one place.
















Thank you Scott for organising a great day and for allowing us to experience your marvellous collection. Thanks also for allowing our daughter Mae to ride the miniature Indian Motorcycle and for offering to take her for a ride in the dodgem. Unfortunately it was out of fuel so maybe next time. We’re certainly looking forward to a return visit.

That ended the day and we all made our way back to Brisbane. It certainly was a club run to remember.

Until next time…..   Johnny