Monday, August 31, 2009

Going South

Thursday and the weather-guessers were calling for rain Friday, Saturday and maybe Sunday! Hurricane Danny was threatening the right coast with untold amounts of rain. We had to drive less than 2 hrs to reach Richmond, VA and the 5th NSRA Richmond Nationals being held there that weekend. We met at 6AM Friday morning and left on our trek south. We stopped at the Cracker Barrel in Ashland, VA for breakfast since there was no rain.. ..yet! After breakfast we motored to the host hotel in west Richmond and our troubles began. In their infinite wisdom VDOT has chosen to not correctly repair the short road from I95 to I64W to Broad St in Richmond. This road is worse than horrible.. ..It is an example of how not to repair roads. We have been going to Richmond for five years and this 4 mile stretch of road is the worst in America. Every year something goes wrong with our cars after we use that road, one year Dan’s steering column shook loose another year the Princesses electronics shut down and she couldn’t open her doors, roll up her windows or open her trunk. One year my ’34 Nash shook so bad the hood got out of alignment so bad it was never the same after that, not to mention the paint that was chipped in the process. This year the Princesses car lost the electronics again.. ..We drive over 7000 miles a year with no problem till we get on this road.. ..It’s like the Bermuda Triangle or something! On the way from the host hotel to the event everything shook back to working and remained so the rest of the weekend! I bounced so high that I now have a dent in the top of my head right where the little button is on the top of my hat! We will never go on that road again, next year we will have a better plan.

After registering at the host hotel we arrived at the event about 10Am and set up camp near where we were last year only this year we were on gravel. Next year we need to get there earlier to get on the grass! All afternoon we were getting reports from family back home in Stafford about how hard it was raining there.. ..No rain where we were yet! We left about 3:30 for the Hampton Inn in Mechanicsville, VA. It was starting to rain just a little. After we unloaded at the motel and ate at Outback it started to seriously rain! We decided not to go to the cruise that night.

Saturday we arrived at the event early and since we left our canopies overnight at our parking spots we were almost set up. It was sunny and hot.. ..Hot.. ..Hot all day long. I think it was about 300 degrees around 2PM. Saturday is the most attended day of the 4 day event and there was much cruising around in golf carts and cars at the event. When we attend weekend shows the Princess and I usually bring “emergency” money in case we see something at the event we want to buy and the vendor doesn’t take plastic. This year the Princess bought a very expensive doodad at Women’s World and had to use her “special” money! But she also saw that I had won a super prize and knew I wouldn’t hear the number being called out so she picked it up for me.. ..Actually when she got back to the camp she gave me my prize before telling me about the expensive doodad.. ..Those Princesses are so tricky, hehehehe Then Dan, in his never ending quest to make his engine & wheels shine a little more, bought some “new and much more wonderful” billet shiner upper for his ’55.. ..So I had to buy some to keep up with him, thanks a lot Dan.. ..I really like to rub on my engine and wheels.. ..Oh yeah.. ..If this keeps up I’ll end up with arms like the California Governor! As always there are really great cars in attendance, please check out the pictures on and video at We decided to leave the event around 4PM and go back to the Hampton to chill out a little before going to the Brunetti’s cruise in Mechanicsville, VA that evening.

The cruise was great, the food at Brunetti’s was good but they were very busy and we had to wait a little to get a table. I took some pictures but by the time we came out from the restaurant it was dark and I don’t take good pictures in the dark so we sat and enjoyed each other’s company for a few hours then went back to our hotel for the evening.

Sunday we arrived at the event around 8:30 and parked near the exit by the winners display area on the bricks. We endured the heat through the awards ceremony and Steve showed us a better way back home.. ..No more I95 next year! The event was much better this year.. ..The new food vendors were a welcome addition to the food that is served at the permanent facility. The restrooms were cleaned and in good shape all day this year. The Women’s World was in full swing and much appreciated by all, not just women! The vendors were busy and well represented. There were a lot of paid spectators this year; they paid $14 a head to see our cars.. ..I saw the advertisements on the hotel TV Friday and Saturday night, I guess it helped!? Dan passed out nearly a 1000 Richmond NSRA flyers at shows we attend. I understand that there were 869 registered attendees this year, up 6 from last year. I also understand that attendance at all the NSRA events across our great Country have been down this year! There is a show that has been in conflict with the Richmond NSRA show for 4 years, it’s the show in New Market we attended last week. This year both shows were scheduled so people could attend both shows. This is the way it should be done from a fairness perspective but the attendance at Richmond this year shows it should be scheduled this way to improve attendance at both shows. Many people from the New Market area attended the Richmond event for the first time this year! One car from New Market was on the bricks in the winner’s area! NSRA needs to consider this for next year so the two shows do not conflict. Both benefit! It should be a no brainer! Do you hear me NSRA?

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