Last August, Mustang Week let its sponsors know that the preeminent Mustang event in the country was going to alter its successful formula. Having outgrown its spot at the mall, the event team forged a new way forward for the event, which included a change of timeframe. That time has arrived.

“Upon returning from this year’s event, the Mustang Week Staff began working with the Myrtle Beach Convention Center to move our two largest events, Friday’s Car Show and Saturday’s Cruise-In, to that location,” Mustang Week’s Rodney Melton told sponsors back then. “And, after some time and careful consideration, we have reached an agreement and our two main events will move there in 2017.”

One of the first cars we ran across was Nick Meyer’s stunning Coyote-swap Cobra. Slathered in glistening black paint and powered by a Precision-turbocharged 5.0-liter, which is built to support four digits. As good as it looks, the car’s painter is planning to totally rebuff the car before Friday’s show, so bring your shades to shield that reflection.

We thought it would take a little bit of a hit at the beginning of the week, but just looking around I don’t feel like it did. — Mike Clay, Mustang Week

That was just the beginning of the shuffle, as the event’s dates would move from July into early September when both temperatures and crowds begin to wane in the beachside community. As part of the change, the event’s official kickoff — the Meet ’N Greet — would return to the site where Mustang Week began as a modest cruise-in, the sprawling Broadway at the Beach shopping and entertainment district.

In July this facility’s parking lot is bursting at the seams. Today, when Mustang Week 2017 began, the busiest section of the lot was filled with Mustang Week participants and spectators, who filled a section of the huge lot and took advantage of the many nearby shops and restaurants between Mustang ogling sessions.

A traditional highlight of the Meet ’N Greet is the reveal of the Mustang Week edition Mustangs. This year Mustang Week’s Mike Clay teamed up with Harris Lue of Lue Creative to design a retro Ford Performance themed 2017 Mustang, while Palmetto Ford’s Tony Barron designed a car that fuses GT350 and Mustang RTR DNA with a colorful scheme. Ken Mahlschnee of Bullitt Auto Detail wrapped both Mustang Week editions t here is a friendly competition to see which car will sell first at Palmetto Ford.

“Just really surprised how good the turnout is,” Mustang Week’s Mike Clay told us while the event was in full swing. “We thought it would take a little bit of a hit at the beginning of the week, but just looking around I don’t feel like it did.”

Having taken the brunt of some harsh blowback from the date change, the Mustang Week organizers exuded a sense of relief and redemption. Moreover, the early returns for the big events later in the week are promising.

Fastlane Motorsports says this twin-turbo Boss 302 is rowdy and we don’t have a hard time believing it. While Ford designed the Boss to carve corners, this one is ready to rip in a straight line. Before its final tune was complete it had already put down 1,155 horsepower courtesy of 19 pounds of boost.

“The car show sold out all 700 spots — 600 of those sold in just over 24 hours,” Mike added. “In years past we did 500 in just under 24, so that kind of told us we were probably on track. We took on an additional 100 and when that happened, the sponsorship went crazy.”

And for good reason, Mustang Week is a feel-good event for fan’s of Ford’s pony car. It offers myriad events — autocross runs, cruise-ins, car shows, drag racing, oval-track laps, and more — which people can sample as they see fit while also enjoying all that the vacation destination has to offer.

Another Meet ’N Greet tradition is a huge line for official event T-shirts and this year’s event didn’t disappoint. Some sizes were sold out well before the first event came to a close and the sales kept going as long as there was a line.

We hit the pavement at the Meet ’N Greet and the BFGoodrich autocross school, which began the week’s official events, and all was definitely well. Check out a sampling of the cool cars we spotted today and stay tuned for our continuing coverage this week.

Daniel Turner knows the way to this scribe’s heart — with a Wild Strawberry Fox coupe. Though it’s not the original hue of this car, it still looks great. He says he left the car stockish for a while before deciding to revamp the coupe. In currently sports a built 306 boosted by twin Precision 62/66 turbos, but a more aggressive combo is slated for the future.

This brightly painted New Edge didn’t make it off the trailer for the Meet ’N Greet, but it is striking. Not only is the paint bright but under the hood its modular is boosted by a big single turbo.

Want the ultimate sleeper? This might be it. A Fairmont Wagon looks pretty mundane, that is until you look under the hood. That’s a Coyote swap and we’ll bet this wagon hauls more than the family.

A lot of people tape up their Mustangs to protect them from the Mustang Week journey, but Chris Murdoch added a lot more than painter’s tape, including a ProCharger, Steeda suspension bits, an Anderson Composites hood and a True Fiber wing. We enjoyed the Mustang Week message on the tape the most though.

For those that like to kick off Mustang Week in a more active fashion, BFGoodrich runs an autocross school at Myrtle Beach Speedway. Both sessions were full of Mustangs of all years. BFG will also set up a new course for Wednesday’s autocross sessions at the speedway.

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