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Lingering COVID precautions frame Back 2 the Bricks’ return, Mt. Pleasant kick-off

Updated: Jun. 4, 2021 at 7:47 PM EDT
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MT. PLEASANT, Mich. (WJRT) (6/4/2021)--That sweltering heat didn’t keep scores of car lovers from checking out the oldies but goodies alongside the latest and greatest in Mt. Pleasant as a resurgent Back 2 the Bricks Promo Tour kicked off at Soaring Eagle Casino and Resort.

But with COVID concerns still lingering, ABC12 explored what’s being done to keep the families who attend safe and sound.

“On the other side there, I saw a 2020 Corvette. That’s kind of cool, too.”

The camera around his neck tells you everything you could want to know about Tom Dahlem. Excited and thankful to be among what he knows better than just about anyone else. After all, the tour’s unofficial historian hasn’t missed a year…

“This is our 11th annual tour and I’ve been to all of them but the first one,” Dahlem said.

Almost.

“All kinds of cars… we love the diversity here,” he gushed.

“We continue to tell people to be alert to everything, make sure you take every precaution you should,” Vice-Chair Al Jones explained. “This promo tour is the biggest we’ve ever had.”

With record turnout on the outs of a pandemic comes the need to make sure the crowd-heavy event stays all in good fun.

“Back 2 the Bricks is designed to be family friendly, be good for the community, good for families, good for car people, good for everyone. The last thing we want is anything that would hinder that.

Dusting off that grueling tour schedule meant going back to the drawing board in 2021 – reimagining the cars and the crowds to make room for that social distance. Posted signs scattered around the site read masks optional for those with a shot in the arm, recommended, per CDC guidance, for everyone else. Good judgement, too, the vice-chair explained would prove just as integral to the big picture as the mirror shine on those rims.

“We’ve all suffered enough this past year,” Jones related. “If you haven’t been vaccinated, please be vaccinated. Do everything you can do… we’ll make sure this happens.”

Tom, pointing to the sheer number of new comers this year as a sign his labor of love still had room to grow.

“What’s your feeling about the car community here, showing the love and turning out again?”

“The people here are just really friendly and enjoy interacting with each other… people from all different walks of life,” Dahlem said.

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