Sunday, June 12, 2016

CulpeperFest 6-10-2016


Every year the Culpeper, VA Chamber of Commerce holds an event called CulpeperFest.  The event is a business networking mixer with local businesses showcasing their products and/or services to each other and the general public.  Like a job or vendor fair…. 

This is the third year we have been invited to participate.  The last two years we provided a mix of special vehicles for the attendees to experience, this year we were invited by Laura & Don to be inside where all the rest of the businesses were so we could set up a booth for The Fisher House Foundation and Cruisin For Heroes.  Since Lou & I were outside with the cars the last two years we really didn’t know exactly what to expect inside.  It was a little different.

Lou, the Princess and I set up our booth around 1PM and began our 6 hour nonstop exercise!  Our group, Cruisin For Heroes, mission is;

  Our mission is to bring a family friendly Vehicle Display to an event that will raise awareness and funding for the Fisher House Foundation as well as other charities/local community service groups supporting Military Organizations, Veterans and First Responders throughout Virginia while encouraging interest in preserving the  great Classic Automobile hobby for future generations.

We feel that the most important part of our mission is to raise awareness of Fisher House….let people know it exists and how it helps our wounded Veterans rehabilitate back into society.  We do raise some money along the way but sharing what Fisher House does is what we mostly do.  So for Friday we did a lot of talking, to the point I was getting horse and losing my voice.  Lou & I were also beginning to feel the pain of old bones when the event was over around 7PM.  Like a lot of other endeavors in life, one may not get to see the fruit of their labors….but we planted the seed of the knowledge of Fisher House in many many people on Friday.  It was a good day for Fisher House and Cruisin For Heroes.     
 

Monday, June 6, 2016

Mid-Summer Thunder Cruise 6-5-2016

Friday afternoon we were ready to go to VA BBQ in Fredericksburg, VA and the weekly cruise….but….the rain beat us there…..

Saturday afternoon we were ready to go to the monthly Pep Boys Cruise in Fredericksburg, VA….but….the rain was coming and 3 different weather sites said massive, severe thunderstorms were due at the cruise around 5PM….so we stayed home….it never rained!
Sunday the same 3 weather sites said more severe thunderstorms were due in Colonial Beach, VA…..the destination of our yearly cruise to Jim Stills private 1954 Ford museum and the picnic hosted by Jim and the Colonial Beach Cruisers.  Our group, Cruisin For Heroes, was running the cruise so we had to follow through with it….even with the impending doom of the storms since it was advertised as a rain or shine event.  Last year we had 45 cruisers show up to begin the adventure….this year we had Tom in his blue/white ’56 Chevy & Lester with his very red Vette but the rest of the small group had daily drivers….because….it WAS going to be a stormy day.
Six vehicles left the start point in Fredericksburg to begin our uneventful 33 mile cruise to Jim’s museum while all the time we kept a sharp eye out for the armageddon of thunderstorms the weatherguessers said was going to set upon us soon.  The sky looked blue in places?  We could actually see the sun occasionally?  I began to wonder if we were driving in an alternate universe because the forecast just wasn’t working out….again
We arrived at Jim’s and everything was set up for a bunch of people…..but because of the weather only 5 people from Colonial Beach joined in the picnic.  Jim & JV had the games set up and people began testing their skill at the lifter toss, flywheel spin, push rod drop, piston ring toss, piston & rod toss and finally the blind driving contest.  They had enough pizza for a horde of marauding Mongols….so we had to help make it go away!  Please check out the pictures & video to get a flavor of what goes on at Jim’s picnic….
Around 2PM our little (8 people) started the short cruise to Wilkerson’s Seafood Restaurant.  It’s the only restaurant in Colonial Beach that serves a buffet, and a buffet is what we need when we had 90 people like last year….this year, not so much.  We all ordered off the menu and were pleasantly filled with local seafood.
Soon it was time to break up the party….some went back to Colonial Beach to visit other friends, others went different routes so the Princess and I had a nice restful cruise back to Stafford….  No rain all day!

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Salem VFD Culpeper, VA 5-29-2016


Sunday a few of us were going to converge on the Salem VFD in Culpeper, VA for the annual fundraiser.  Tony of Tony’s Body Shop manages the event and it is always a well attended deal with nice rides.  The weatherguessers were saying that hurricane Bonnie would pay us a visit in the form of a lot of rain on Sunday.  Some said it would arrive around Noon….others said it would arrive later in the day but before dark.  So we go…..

We arrived a little early so we could pretty much pick our parking spot….and we would need to save one for Fred & Debie.  After the four of us set up camp we ventured inside the fire house where the firefighters were serving breakfast!  What a concept!

The day was unfolding normally and I struck out to document the participants with my trusty Sony H9.  I purchased the Sony in 2007 at the advice of a professional photographer friend.  I have captured over 60,000 images so far and have been very pleased with the results.  Lately the shutter button has been malfunctioning and while doing repair research I found that it is a common problem with the whole “H” series of Sony.  It’s one of the few parts that can be readily found on the net.  I purchased one and will see if I can become a camera repairman next week….  But today I started photographing the reflection of our farm truck in the hubcap of Fred’s ’57 Dodge….I like to try artsy fartsy shots occasionally.  The rest of my day would be trying to tweak the polarizer filter to put the reflections where I want on the vehicles and working with the sun….and waiting for people to move on so I can get a clear shot of the ride.  I was about half way through the field when I heard the announcer say they were going to end the show early because of ominous returns on the weather radar, coming directly towards us!  Bonnie was going to make an appearance today.  I walked a little faster and shortened my photo composition time so I could capture all the vehicles….whew.  When I reached our camp, Fred and the girls had taken down the canopy and were in the process of putting the chairs away too. 

Tony quickly ran through the award program and let us out around 1:30….instead of 3PM or later!  We all left and ran for home going in and out of very minor spritzing on the truck before we were in the garage!  A welcome end to a very busy weekend….
 

Bruster's Culpeper Cruise 5-28-2016


Saturday was the second time we held our monthly cruise at Bruster’s in Culpeper, VA….and I think it’s catching on!  We had 55 cruisers visit for the hot evening….  The guest DJ, DJ Craig of CNT DJ Services, played awesome background music for 5 hours! 

Once again the Fredericksburg Classic and Muscle Car Club made the 35 mile trip to support the cruise with their presence AND Kim, Crystal and Denise volunteered to run the 50/50 and captured $134 in the process.  The eventual winner donated back their half of the money so all of it goes to The Fisher House Foundation!  I think Mark’s pet rubber snake caused more than a little….confusion….in the FC&MCC camp.  We really appreciate the assistance of the FC&MCC as they help us grow this cruise.

Andrew invited the Virginia Camaro club to check us out and a bunch of them took him up on the invite!  There was a great mix of cruisers from hot rods to muscle cars…. 

Around 7:30 Melissa, one of the owners of Bruster’s, selected the very cool blue ’72 Chevy Pickup as the Bruster’s Manager’s Choice for May….a very gnarly local ride.  The crowd dispersed shortly after the award ceremony and the Princess & I cruised home and reflected on how the day unfolded.  Lou & Arlene also had a nice cruise home in their red ’53 Ford….until….they remembered they came in two cars….getting older is….special….grinning…. 
 
 

Monday, May 30, 2016

VA BBQ 5-27-2016


Friday we cruised to Fredericksburg, VA and the weekly cruise to VA BBQ, run by FC&MCC.  We set up by the big blue donation box in the parking lot….it seems to be a good way to have a neat little area between cars to gather and talk.  The lot began to fill up around 5PM when it began to cool off a little….just a couple weeks ago we were complaining about the cold weather….not it’s hot!  We had no spring….it went from winter straight into summer, welcome to Virginia!

We had about 50 cars visit the Q including a vintage Land Rover, the kind I remember in old movies about Africa.  Paul drove Anita’s black/red 1935 Chevy more door….and Bob brought his red/white ’55 Chevy that has been freshened up….quite a bit….like new paint and all the trim looks better than new!....check it out next time.  The white/purple ’70 Duster was just right and Dave’s too green ’37 Chevy Sedan sat in the corner and glowed all night!  As usual the visitors were varied….that’s what makes this a very cool cruise, like Mrs. Gump said, you never know what you’re goanna get….

The two awards were given out, the 50/50 was called and everyone left for points unknown….except Bob & Nancy and the Princess & I….we visited Freddy’s Restaurant again….a neat end to the day.
 

Saturday, May 21, 2016

VA BBQ 5-20-2016


I think it has rained in Virginia for 400 days straight….some of our neighbor’s lawns look like the Serengeti during the monsoons, I expect reports of lions lurking in the grass any day now.  Friday it finally cleared up and the weather was perfect!  A visit to VA BBQ in Fredericksburg, VA was in order….we dusted the farm truck off and headed south.

We got there a little early to make sure we got the parking spot we wanted.  A few months ago a “Better World” clothing and shoe donation box showed up in the parking lot.  It takes up just enough space to make the rest of the parking spot pretty much useless unless you drive a bike or Crosley.  The bikes like to park close to the building and I haven’t seen a Crosley at the Q for a few years now….so we like to park in the spot next to the collection box and use the space the box is in for our people gathering.  That way we don’t have to fight with the ants for space on the grass.  We parked on one side of the box and Fred parked on the other side, effectively ensuring enough space for 10-12 cruisers to sit in a loose circle, in an ant free area while the evening unfolded.  We like to gather on the opposite side of the parking lot from the DJ….we like the music but we like to share the time in conversation too.  The music play list was just about perfect….the DJ nailed it.

The host club, Fredericksburg Classic & Muscle Car Club, runs a 50/50 to provide funds for their charity program for needy families in December….I think the total for the night was almost $300!  The club members are kept busy with the music, 50/50, parking and networking.  Kim keeps Rick busy most of the evening welcoming visitors and rubbing on their red Chevy truck with the yellow flames….hehehehe

About 60 vehicles visited during the evening and the rides varied from a pro street ’63 Dodge with Elephant power to a little blue ’62 VW weezer and most everything in between.  Darryl ventured out and was scaring the Mustangs & Camaro’s with his Plum Crazy ’16 Challenger Hellcat….that is one intimidating machine.  JV & CJ stayed a while in their T-Bucket and a young gentleman added his yellow Ford Focus to the mix, he even put a “TAXI” sign on the roof later….  Bill & Debbie brought their ’61 Metro out after it’s winter hibernation, it is unquestionably a hippy car.  Ricky & Diane joined us with their red ’29 Ford Sedan….he built his Ford from a barn find and did all the work himself, check it out sometime.  Besides the ’63 Pro Street Dodge, my favorite of the evening was the very dark blue ’31 Ford Roadster….just perfect.

It was getting just a little chilly when the club gave out the managers choice and club choice trophy so a few of us packed up and decided to visit Freddy’s Restaurant for a late dinner….  After our gastronomical adventure we all cruised home in different directions….a cool ending to a great day with cars & friends….I love this hobby….
 
 

Monday, May 16, 2016

Va BBQ 5-13-2016

The rain has been a problem for that last few weeks but Friday  Rick made the rain stop soon enough so we cruised to the VA BBQ in Fredericksburg, VA and the weekly cruise managed by Fredericksburg Classic and Muscle Car Club.  It was a perfect afternoon to be out enjoying friends & cars.

Darryl brought his new purple Hellcat out, it really is one very cool machine.  Jo-Ann was chauffeured to the cruise in her recently acquired, two toned 1949 Chevy Pickup.  It is one of the nicest Chevy AD’s around.  About 35 cruisers brought out their special rides to the Q….
Friday night was awesome….Saturday’s activities would be rained out for us…..maybe next week.