Tuesday, August 16, 2016

4th Annual Summer Screech 8-14-2016

Sunday we ran the Cruisin For Heroes, 4th Annual Summer Screech to Williamsburg, VA.  This is a lazy, easy cruise of about 200 miles out and back.  We only travel the back roads of Virginia but unlike the twisty mountain roads this is the flatlands area of Virginia that runs near the Rappahannock River most of the way then follows the York River to near the Chesapeake Bay.  Our destination is always Capt. George’s Seafood Restaurant.  It is THE premier seafood buffet….period!  We cruise on Sunday because we get a discount on the price and can reserve part of a room for our group. 

We usually have 15 or so cars of people that make the journey but the oppressive heat kept most home this year.  We had four hot rods show up and since it was a rain or shine event some came in their daily drivers!  It was interesting that the four hot rods were all Fords….I’m not sure what that means….grinning Since the Princess recently had extensive surgery and was still recuperating she wanted us to take our daily driver too, it has A/C….!  And we were both trying to recover from the heat drain from the day before.
The cruise was uneventful down and back….the food was exceptional as usual….the day was perfect although very hot.  Driving around the Virginia highways, eating at exceptional restaurants….it’s living a dream.  I love this hobby….



FC&MCC 14th annual show, 8-13-2016

Saturday we were going to attend the 14th Annual Fredericksburg Classic & Muscle Car Club show….it’s always a hoot and we like to support our favorite Car Club.  They work at collecting money all year from their 50/50 at the weekly cruise and the proceeds from their annual show.  They use the money to support local needy families especially around Christmas time.  They have always had a positive impact on the lives of many people in and around Fredericksburg, VA.  In addition to supporting something good….the show is the premier event of its kind south of the Occoquan River.

The club knows how to manage the show so it unfolds like a German railroad.  They always have a gaggle of quality vendors to keep the crowd occupied when they aren’t ogling the rides.  And they have a DJ…..  Calling Chip a ‘DJ’ is like calling the Grand Canyon a hole in the ground!  Chip has taken the pulse of the kind of music we all like….and he actually plays it with few announcements breaking up the sounds.  Without a good DJ an event stutters and coughs along….but Chip keeps everything rolling smoothly.
The weatherguessers said it was going to be hot….this is the first time this year that they hit it right.  The temp was 98 degrees with a 472% humidity reading….making the heat index around 10830 degrees centigrade.  Thermonuclear stuff for sure.  I think I saw some people’s unprotected skin begin to sag….like the ending of Indiana Jones!  The Princess does NOT LIKE the heat….not even a little.  She stayed under the canopy most of the day holding court with anyone that ventured into her realm.  The two of us drank nine, 20oz bottles of water and three, G2 Gatorades.  It may have not been enough.
The quality of the entrants and the diversity of the rides are always over the top.  I think there were about 100 cars registered, which was down from previous years.  No doubt some thought better of sitting outside in the heat trying to drink in as much water as they were sweating out.  I liked the brown ’56 Pontiac the best but there were others that were some of our area’s best examples of hot rodding.  A lot of trucks are showing up at shows & cruises lately….18 trucks and a fire truck attended this show!  I think it’s a good thing. 
The heat began to get oppressive around 1PM and the club mercifully ended the human barbeque when they called the Chinese Auction winners early.  Then the trophies were awarded and the 50/50 winner drawn.  That was when we all dispersed like water on a freshly waxed hood. 

We had wanted to attend the Locust Grove cruise after the show….but….after enduring the asphalt softening heat all day; we decided to go toward the A/C instead.
If you have attended this show before you know it’s a must do show for the year….if you haven’t attended, you need to fix that next year.


VA BBQ 8-12-2016 Fredericksburg, VA

Friday we invaded Fredericksburg, VA and the weekly cruise hosted by FC&MCC at VA BBQ.  The temp was above 95 with the heat index somewhere around 103.  Few people came out before the sun went down, no doubt because of the heat.  But eventually there were about 25 hearty souls that braved the heat.  A couple rides were new to the cruise….like the green ’50 Chevy PU and the red/silver ’55 Chevy convertible.  And Ken visited with his white El Camino….we haven’t seen him for over a year! 

The club gave out the trophies and everyone motored home….we had to get ready for tomorrow….in the heat.  The weatherguessers were forecasting a heat index of 110….


Monday, August 8, 2016

Valley Mustangs Unlimited 8-6-2016

Cruisin For Heroes was invited to set up a Fisher House Foundation information canopy at the 22 Annual Mustang and Ford Powered Car/Truck show in Harrisonburg, VA.  The Valley Mustangs Unlimited Car Club manages the show at the Harrisonburg Ford dealership.  We attended this event a couple years ago and had a great time so when Joe & Dave invited us back this year we jumped at the opportunity.  Since I don’t have a Ford on the road yet I decided to take our daily driver and not have to endure the good natured ribbing about my Chevy truck.  The farm truck repairs were not quite finished anyway from it’s argument with a large unseen pothole we drove through….it trashed a couple ball joints and some other things.  Dave at B&R Customs was putting the finishing touches on the repairs so that also helped make the decision to use the daily driver.  Lou & I would represent CFH at the event so I met Lou at his home and we transferred all our Fisher House stuff to his Ford Escape and motored 131 miles southwest to Harrisonburg, VA.
We set up between the DJ and the Judges canopy….and I knew when they put a trash can near us, we would get a lot of traffic.  The day was warm but as long as the breeze was moving the air, it was tolerable. 
This is a Ford show….put on by a Ford Mustang club….at a Ford dealership!  If you think there would be a lot of Mustangs that registered for the show….you would be keerect.  About 80% of the 95 registered vehicles were Mustangs of one year or another.  A lot of really cool late model Mustangs too….and most were over the top nice.  The judging is a points based system that evens out any arbitrary judging….just the facts ma’am….  It would be difficult to pick out the best Mustang but for me the blue ’72 was special….  I liked the green/white ’65 Ford F-100 with the Boss 9 Shotgun motor….THAT pegged my WOW meter.  I also liked the red F-1 with Flathead power.  There was just too many nice cars to pick just one or two. 
Sometime around 1PM the DJ announced that rain might be coming and the club would try to hurry up the process so folks could get out before the rain.  Then around 2PM the black clouds began to roll over the hills behind the dealership….it looked bad.  The club began to hand out the awards but the rain started when they were….almost…done.  The rain didn’t begin slowly and progress…no…it began in wind whipped torrents….a trash floater if I ever saw one.  Lou & I were alone under our canopy till the rain started….then we had about 25 new friends huddled under our canopy….watching the rain fall.  The club waded through the awards and the DJ finally called the event over.  Most people waited for the rain to abate a little then sprinted out to their rides.  We packed up and made our way north.  The storm system was traveling the same direction as we were….so we were in rain all the way to Culpeper.  When I had transferred my part of the FH stuff back in my car I began a wet 47 mile trip back to Stafford. 
It was an interesting day…we made over 100 dollars for Fisher House Foundation from the donation barrel and the club will share the proceeds from the show with Fisher House Foundation.  They will present their check to Cruisin For Heroes at the local VFW on Veterans Day in November.  This will help put us near our yearly goal for Fisher House of $7500. 


Monday, July 25, 2016

Bruster's of Culpeper 7-23-2016

The fourth Saturday of the month and Cruisin For Heroes puts on their Bruster’s of Culpeper cruise with the assistance of the Fredericksburg Classic and Muscle Car Club.  The weatherguessers said Saturday would be near 100 with the heat index…but the good news was Sunday & Monday would be even hotter! Yaaaaa! 

We met Jim and Jimmy & Anne at the Sheetz in N. Stafford then at 2PM we cruised 40 miles to Bruster’s in Culpeper.  We arrived and began setting up….and began to really notice the heat.  Rick & Kim were stopping on their way back from vacation and DJ Chip rolled in shortly after we set up the DJ canopy.  Chip is donating his time and talent to provide the music and announcements for us….he is the best.  The Fredericksburg club not only comes to add to the participants they help us run the event.  Kim always runs the 50/50 with help from fellow club members.  It’s tough to explain the heat….it was oppressive and almost depressive.  The heat makes everything you do just that much harder…especially for us old folks….grinning. 
We had a vendor join us this month, State Farm agent, Hunter Wyant and his crew.  Lou is going to see how we can make his presence at some of our events an opportunity to add to the funds we collect for Fisher House Foundation….we’ll see how this unfolds. 
The oppressive heat kept some cruisers away but not Tom & Larry with their Pro Street Chevy’s.  These beasts are what a part of hot rodding is all about….they roam the VA & MD cruises with other Pro Street cars allowing us to hear/feel/see what streetable race cars are like….thanks guys.
We had about 37 cars visit the event….which was a surprise because of the white hot temps.  Some left before I got the chance to photograph their rides, it was just too hot. 
Dave won the Bruster’s Manager’s choice with his very green ’37 Chevy Sedan….and Doug & his wife (orange 49 Chevy gasser) won the 50/50 (which they gave back for Fisher House).  Jim & Lou shortened the cruise and closed it down at 7PM because of the heat….a good call.
I think we have just a few little adjustments to make for our cruise and then it will be all about inviting more people….I think we have room for about 40 more rides….we’ll see.
We took down everything, packed it up and ran for home….it was a very long day for me….it would take me two days to recover and get back to my normal for a 72 year old guy with no hair….hehehehe
Pictures here;


VA BBQ Fredericksburg, VA 7-22-2016

Friday we visited VA BBQ in Fredericksburg, VA….we usually try to attend this cruise that is close to home….when weather allows.  The weatherguessers promised hot temps and it did not disappoint.  On the way to the Q we stopped at the 2400 Diner to check out their burgers….they were as good as the rest of the fare we have sampled at this quaint eatery.  As usual when we drive the hot rod, it draws attention….I had an extended conversation with a local guy that knows everyone in our hobby….now he knows me too!

As soon as we were set up in the lot I began visiting with a gentleman originally from NorCal back in the day….he ran a Jr. Fueler among other cars.  His son joined him later in the afternoon with his brown ’54 Chevy….was very cool to reminisce and make this connection with our past.
The heat kept the attendance down but there was still about 35 cruisers visited the event.  Stuart came with the guy and his red FVFD Jeep….looks like a 50’s deal, I’ll have to ask him how old it is the next time.  I also liked the black/white ’60 Vette, not many of them still on the road.  For me the coolest ride of the night was the copper ’67 Dodge Charger…it was just perfect!
As soon as the awards were given out we cruised home….it was just too warm to go cruising anywhere else.
Pictures here;


Monday, July 18, 2016

VA BBQ 7-15-2016 and beyond....

Friday we visited VA BBQ in Fredericksburg, VA with our Granddaughter, Haley.  Haley and I watched American Graffiti right before we left (she had never seen it!) so she could see what the connection was between us and the cars. We wanted to share part of our lifestyle with her….so she better understands why we do what we do with our car hobby.  Why we sit in the heat, sweating till it’s dripping off our elbows….eating semi-warm pizza, drinking watered down soft drinks while sitting in uncomfortable fold up camp chairs in the blazing sun for 4 hours.  It’s about the friendships and camaraderie of people that all have something in common….special rides!  

Since the farm truck will only hold two people, the Princess decided to exercise her red ’94 Mustang GT.  We let Haley chose her ride….I think she liked to ride in the farm truck!  There were about 40 special rides that visited the Q and one real special one was the red Jeepster with the Buick V-6 engine, some very interesting hot rodding going on right there.  There was a nice red slammed C-10 that I didn’t get any info on….next time.  A red ’31 Ford sedan with a raked radiator….I have never seen anything like that and it piqued my curiosity.  One of my favorites was the black BMW Z3 Coupe M….I know I know….a Beemer is not a hot rod.  I just like these little station wagon like coupes….  I also liked the black 1950 Ford coupe with the flathead sporting 3 2bbls….it was a nice throwback.
We stayed till the end then cruised to Freddy’s for a late burger….sharing more of our crazy lifestyle with Haley.
Saturday we were going to cruise 60 miles one way to the Orange County Cruisers monthly cruise at the Burger King in Orange, VA. We were a little apprehensive about the weather, they were forecasting severe thunderstorms MAYBE in the LATE afternoon.  When the appointed time came and no one else showed up to make the trek….we decided to visit the cruise in N. Stafford at the BK on Rt. 610 incase the severe weather materialized.  We haven’t visited this local cruise for a few years, something else is always on our agenda.  We found some good parking spots that backed up to grass and quickly shut down the cars.  Yes the Princess was driving her Mustang….Haley was riding in the truck….again! hehehehe  The Princess & Haley scooted inside BK….to get some food while I went to the two Gary’s running the cruise to say Hi.  We caught up a little then a guy wanted to talk to me about the farm truck.  We were engaged in a lengthy conversation when two other guys walked over to the truck.  We all started to talk about the truck and their tide….that’s the way it’s supposed to work!  Richard, one of the guys, abruptly said he had to go?  I had been talking facing one way for about 45 min, I asked Richard why was he leaving so soon?  He pointed behind me….I turned around and the sky was black!  It looked like a haboob, the massive sand storms in the Middle East but black as coal.  I said my goodbyes and retrieved the Princess & Haley from the inside of BK then we made a mad dash for home! 
We arrived about 10 min before the sky opened up and dumped rain in trash floating proportions….whew…  So we didn’t have much of a cruise….time for pizza and a movie!