Monday, March 29, 2010

The 2010 season is underway....and it's cold!

Saturday, March 27, 2010 and we attend the 4th annual Skills USA show at North Stafford High School in Stafford, VA. This is usually the first show of the season around here so everyone looks forward to it and in fact it is the target completion date for some that work on their cars over the winter (don’t ask me how I know that). The show has been improving every year and the trend continues. The weather was sunny but very cold; a major change from last weekend where temps were in the 70’s and this weekend I think it was -265 degrees.

One of the nice touches at this show are the awards….they are mostly made by the students at NSHS in Susan’s graphic arts class and they have never been a disappointment….this year they were a knockout! The students also run most of the show with the major sponsor, Herlong Associates Inc., assisting with MC duties. The students were selling hot coffee and food all day, the Princess says it was very good and the coffee helped dull the cold. There were a couple vendors and the Stafford County Sheriff Deputies with their Bustang, a seized vehicle from a drug bust that they have put into service to educate and illustrate one of the down sides of drug involvement…. you lose your stuff! And speaking about losing your stuff, the students set up a “jail” to raise money for Skills USA. The guy with the Model T and his crew had me arrested for something, I don’t remember what it was for but you know how those Model T guys always exaggerate everything….grin So I bought my way out of jail before I got time to sit down….I don’t know what kind of message it sends when the perp gets to buy his way out of jail? And how come it cost me $20 and everyone else it was $5-$10? I think the Princess had something to do with that!? Anyway it’s all in fun and for a good cause and If I didn’t give the $20 to Skills I would probably just bought something silly with it….like headlight fluid. The Air Force JROTC presented the Colors and we all saluted the Flag while the National Anthem was played….It gives me chills every time we do that!

Last year’s attendance was 170 vehicles and this year’s 158 registered vehicles may have something to do with the weather…. did I mention it was cold?

The vehicles were varied from the Model T to new Camaros and Mustangs. By far the most represented car was the Mustang…. there were plenty of old ones like Ray’s blue ’66 to Pete’s white 428R….it’s interesting to see all the different engine mods that can be done to the late model Mustang in the interest of lower emissions and fuel economy….yeah right! The Corvettes were well represented too including the yellow flamed one that I’ve seen for a few years now and it’s always a crowd pleaser. There were many “older” cars too….street rods and customs. The early Falcon with the killer Ford motor and the yellow ’32 5 window coupe but the coolest street rod wasn’t a car at all….it was a ’34 Dodge school bus! Buddy & Cathy are from New Market, VA and we saw the school bus last year at their 3 day event in New Market. They hadn’t finished the interior at that time but now it’s complete and deserved the best of show it won Sat. They were on their way back from Myrtle Beach, SC where they attended the Run to the Sun event there last weekend. The bus is cool in every way; you have to check it out when it’s at a show with you. Another cool vehicle was Allen’s ’64 Corvair Greenbrier camper, I have never seen one before and his is in magnificent shape! And there were a couple tribute bikes for our fallen Heroes that were done nicely and much appreciated.

The awards were given out around 3:30 and I think the judging was done well. There was a good balance between new & old cars. Sometimes when there are so many “new” cars the old ones get overlooked but when you have the level of professionalism these judges displayed no one gets overlooked….it’s the way to do car shows if you are going to have judged classes. After the awards were given out the winners were asked to cruise to the award table to have their picture taken and some did burn outs after that…. Too bad I didn’t get an award….the RedRat likes to do burn outs…. Hehehehehe The best burn out was done by the dually pick up hauling the “” car on a trailer….it went from one end of the parking lot to the other with the smoke so dense you couldn’t see the car on the trailer! I took some video of some of the cars leaving and uploaded it to youtube..enjoy!

After the show we cruised to Bruster’s for their first cruise in of the season. A bunch of us had and early dinner at Sam’s Restaurant but when we came back to the cars it was really cold….so we decided to call it a day! Ron & Gary had a lot of cars at their cruise but it was just too cold for us. Maybe next weekend will be better…. Be sure to check out the 'Auto Essentials' blog to the left and the 'Chucks Photos' link. -2=96

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Local Hero

I don’t apologize for posting this blog entry that isn’t about cars….sometimes you must go outside the lines.

Monday, March 22, 2010 we attended a fundraiser for a wounded warrior by the name of Steven Kierman. Sgt. Kierman is now retired from the USMC and located in the Fredericksburg, VA area. The fundraiser was at a local restaurant, County Fare, located near the Stafford Courthouse on the corner of Hope Rd. & Rt. 1. The restaurant is owned by a retired Marine which gives the place a neat atmosphere and the food is simple but very tasty and the service is always prompt and attentive….the Princess and I eat there often. The restaurant is usually busy but not crowded, except on Sunday morning, and then sometimes you have to wait a few minutes to be seated. Monday evening we got there about 4:45 and the place was beginning to fill up! After we were seated Jim & Linda came in and shared our table so they wouldn’t have to wait in line. We left around 5:45 and the line was almost around the side of the building! During that brief 3 hours they collected $13,000 for the Homes for our Troops organization that is assisting Steven with housing. The waitresses even donated their tips to the effort!

Regardless of your opinion of the wars we are engaged in you must support the men & women that are doing the bidding of our Country by putting themselves in harms way. Yes, they chose to be in the Military….but they did not choose to return to us injured. We must always hold all our Heroes in our prayers….in our hearts….and in our arms. And for the ones that come back to us with needs that they cannot attain themselves we need to support them whenever the opportunity presents itself, like this fundraiser for Steven. Separate yourself from some of that money you have been saving for a rainy day….these Heroes are having a really rainy day right now and need your help.

The link below is for the ‘Homes for our Troops’ site and it lists the needs to help build Steven a home….help if you can….it’s the right thing to do!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

The Madness Begins....

March 20, 2010….the weather is exceptionally nice, sunny in the 70’s….perfect! I planned to have our hot rods ready enough to go to the first cruise next Friday but the urge to get out of the garage was too great to ignore, so off we went to BK in Manassas, VA. This cruise is year around but I think the “official” new season kicks off today.

I think the most unusual car was the white 1919 Ford center door, I tried to catch up with the owner but could not find him/her; I need to find out more about that car. Mike brought his red Anglia in then another red one showed up. There was a Chevy 789 which is kind of weird, in a nice way. Larry & Shirley’s new silver ’32 roadster was very nice. A lot of old & new muscle cars rounded out the crowd. We left a little early but there were about 160 cars….as with most cruises some came and stayed and some came in, walked around a little then left. It was a great beginning to this season. One down….99 to go!

I will be sending out our show/cruise itinerary again this year every week, if you want to be on my “list” of email recipients of this mailing please let me know.