Rods & Classics

Report: Crusin’ for the Cure

As mentioned earlier, and posted last Thursday, we went to Crusin’ for the Cure car show Saturday. We had a great time. It was cool – a little foggy – when we got there at 7:45 am or so, so parking was easy, our Auto Club cards got us a discount, everyone was friendly. An estimated 15,000 people attended to look at (and listen to) 3,100 cars, trucks and a few vehicles that are hard to categorize. It’s the largest one-day auto show in the U.S. By 10:00 the weather cleared and it got hot. I had SPF 50 on but still got some color before I thought to put on a hat. Duh. We bald guys should always remember to wear the hat!

For five hours or so we walked, looked, I took pictures, and we watched the cruise. This show is set up at the local Fairgrounds, in the huge parking lot. The cars are lined up in rows in the middle and around the outside is the “cruise lane”, where, according to some arcane system I don’t understand, cars leave their parking places and drive around the outside of the area, with much revving and clutch-popping and so forth. It’s a little noisy, sure, but it’s really nice to see the vehicles in movement instead of just as static displays. There were LOTS of hot rods and customs. I enjoy seeing them, but I’m more interested in the cars from 1955 to 1970.

56 Chevy

There’s a term I learned recently for 1955-1957 cars: triple five, or tri-five. Now, during that period Ford and Chevrolet sold more cars than other manufactures, and each about the same numbers. So when I go to a car show like this and see 100 1955-1957 Chevrolets, all beautifully restored, looking (and sounding) great, like this 1956, I wonder: WHERE ARE THE FORDS?

Sure, there are lots of older Fords, 1932 hot rods, 1939-41 hot rods and customs, there were even a few 1949 and 1950 cars. But when it comes to the tri-five cars, the Fords are nowhere to be found. I saw three of them, perhaps four, including a Ranchero (there were a lot of Chevy El Caminos). These few Fords all heavily customized, there wasn’t a single one that looked even close to stock. What happened? How did the Chevys get saved, while apparently the Fords all disappeared? I just don’t get it.

Don’t get me wrong – there were plenty of Fords at the show. As I said, older cars turned into hot rods and then there were a LOT of Mustangs. It was as if Ford didn’t make anything between 1949 and 1965, and then only Mustangs.

67 Camaro

Oh, I guess I might mention one more thing: I damn near bought this blue 1967 Camaro RS/SS 396. I love these things. Cooler heads (my wife) prevailed, and I came home only with happy memories of a great day and a camera full (well 120 or so) of pictures.

Busy Weekend

I haven’t posted since Friday morning, it was a busy weekend. We went to the car show (see below for more on that), did some grilling, yard work, Barbara worked on and almost completed another quilt, there was football watching, we had another major ant invasion (see post from August 30) to deal with. If the hot, hot dry weather would let up, maybe the things would stay outside. Plus there were all the usual chores, errands and so forth. I got a tiny bit of reading in as well. Yesterday afternoon we watched the first installment of…

Ken Burn’s National Parks: America’s Best Idea.

I’ve been looking forward to this, and we enjoyed it quite a bit. Naturally, human beings being what they are, any good idea will be opposed by the greedy and unscrupulous, who are legion, so the idea of setting aside majestic, beautiful areas and protecting those places from commercialization and despoilment was opposed mightily. Thank heavens for people like John Muir. If you missed the first installment, go ahead and watch the rest of it, tonight on PBS and the next few nights, and then you can catch up with the series on DVD, rentable from Netflix beginning October 6th, or from your other favorite DVD source, or buy the thing (the scenery is to die for) in either standard DVD or Blu-Ray.

I grew up in a family that greatly valued nature. My uncle was a long time, very active member of the Sierra Club and went on Sierra Club trips all over the world, climbing mountains and hiking. He hiked and camped in the Sierras countless times, and covered most of the Muir trail. They owned all of the beautiful large S.C. books, and when visiting I read and looked at them often and have most of them myself. Beauty, wildness, the serenity of observing nature and the need to protect it were ideas instilled in me at an early age. Watching this series is a natural for me. Highly recommended !

About Rick Robinson

Enjoying life in Portland, OR
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