Monday, September 10, 2012

A Wild and Crazy Weekend

Friday evening we cruised to the Family Diner in Fredericksburg, VA for dinner with friends then off to the weekly cruise of the Fredericksburg Classic and Muscle Car Club at VA BBQ.  We didn’t arrive at the cruise till around 7pm and most of the parking spots were taken!  The truck is long and it doesn’t turn tightly real well….so we parked in the travel lanes of the lot till something opened up.  There were around 60 vehicles and most were the usual suspects.  One of the new ones that caught my attention was the red Chevy Blazer Sport, 2 dr.  It is one of the finest examples of a car like that I have seen.  I also liked the yellow ’55 Chevy Pickup….I have seen it before but it really does stand out for more than its color!

Saturday our group cruised 16 miles to the Quantico Marine Corps base in Virginia.  They were having their first car show in a lot of years and we wanted to support their efforts.  I always like to be on base.  Being an Air Force brat I have lived on a few bases in my early years and I feel comfortable there. There is a complex entry procedure but when you get over that it is a neat place to spend your day.  Their contact person, Joey S., made the process very smooth.  They had a great food vendor, The Clubs at Quantico, who had done this before!  The food was superior, prices were fair and the service & attitude was impeccable….great job. The Porta potties were clean and well placed which was much appreciated by all.  Some of our group ventured into Quantico Town and the S & G restaurant for breakfast….a great idea from Ken B. the night before at VA BBQ and seconded by Ron C.!  The event was used to raise money for the Quantico Auto Hobby Skills Center….  I spent many hours in various Air Force base auto shops in my early years beginning at Minot AFB, ND.  With what little we pay our Warriors this is a much needed and deserved perk for them.
The day was warm but not hot but with a robust breeze all day.  We were planning on being able to set up our canopy on grass or gravel where we could properly secure it but we were parked on asphalt.  If the wind was going to be a problem we had to be able to secure our canopy so it wouldn’t be flying around the parking lot, bumping off the cars in the show!  So….what to do….  Since we now drive a hot rod with a spare wheel/tire I decided that would anchor one leg of the canopy.  Since I need to be prepared to repair things that may go awry with the truck I have been carrying a tool bag that weighs about 648 lbs!  That should fix another leg.  Fred and Ron dug out some tool boxes and other things that took care of another leg and the last one was secured with Lou’s cooler!  We laugh at wind now….grin! 
As we were setting under the canopy an Air Force C-17 flew over on final approach a couple times….really cool to see!  There were about 170 vehicles at the show….a lot for a new show….  We’ll see how it does next year.  There were many newer vehicles, about 2/3 were built after 1980 and the judging was done by participant voting for the different categories.  We liked the natural yellow ’55 Ford Pickup; we see this hot rod on the roads a lot….it’s good to drive them cars!  And Joe’s orange 66/67 Nova is always a welcome sight at a show.  You have to check out the pictures to see the many other vehicles that attended.  A neat show that we will try to attend again next year….so should you!  We didn’t try to go to the Family Diner cruise in Fredericksburg after the show because of the rain that was on the way….it arrived about an hour after we got home.
Sunday we left Stafford at 6AM and cruised 38 miles and met up with Lou & Arlene in Gainesville, VA then continued our cruise for 22 more miles to Herndon, VA and the 11th Annual Herndon Classic Car Show sponsored by the Dulles Area Chapter of AARP.  This is one of the most fun shows we do all year.  When we arrived at 7:23 there were already 15 cars parked!  Two were in “our” parking spots!  What to do….?  The staff member was trying to make us park down the street but we really didn’t want to go there.  So we decided to park across the street from “our” parking spaces….I could tell the staff guy was not happy with our decision but he helped us get lined up like he wanted and left us.  I put on events myself and I know the value of parking people where YOU want them to be….but sometimes you have to considered letting people park where THEY want to park to keep happy campers.  If we hadn’t been able to park where we wanted it would have made the day much less enjoyable for us.  So….where we ended up turned out to be better than our previous place and it will now be our new parking place for next year….I think we will be there by 6:30 next time!
The event has something going on all day along with the vehicle show.  The 50’s dancers were a hoot and the strolling Dominion Singers were great. Jimmy’s Old Town Tavern had ladies from the NOVA Roller Derby Team dressed in 50’s attire, on roller skates taking food orders.  Then they would bring them back to where ever you were sitting!  Kinda cool!  There were a couple other vendors and the Dairy Queen was open for business too.  Wiygul Automotive Clinic was the major sponsor. 

The quality of the vehicles is really top notch at this show and since the weather was superb many very nice cars came out.  There was a nice yellow ’55 Chevy post and a couple ’57 Chevys too.  Jason’s orange 50 something Caddie wowed everyone and the candy red Merc lead sled was present to collect his trophy.  I met a man I had not seen since the late 70’s when I was with Ryland Homes….he was working for one of our plumbing contractors and I recognized him almost instantly….good connection after all these years….I’m sure I will see Mike again at another event.  His black ‘55/’56 Ford post was nicely done and….it had a 6 cyl motor!  It even had speed equipment of the period and nice ceramic coated headers….a very nice build!  I also liked the green ’34 Ford sedan, the nicest I’ve seen.  Lou & Arlene took the theme of the show to new heights by dressing like something right out of Happy Days!  And their red ’53 Ford convertible just added to the scene…. 
We really enjoyed the day….good weather….good food….good friends….I love this hobby!

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