Sunday, June 24, 2007

Back to the 50's Street Rod Show

This weekend the 40th anniversary of the Back to the 50's Street Rod Show took place at the Minnesota State Fair Grounds, and of course, I had a desire to check it out. I don't know why, but I appreciate nice cars. I don't own the greatest car, but I like to dream about it. Going to this event brings back memories of my younger days. Cars were unique then. Long about August in the 50's, folks speculated about what the new models were going to look like. For a few years there, the changes were drastic - huge fins; long lines; steering wheels that moved to the right to give the driver more room getting in and out of the car; push button gears. There were hard top convertibles and convertibles that completely folded into the trunk. The "Lincoln Continental" had an extended back bumper with the fully inflated spare tire totally encased in a matching decorative cover proudly mounted on it.

My dad had two Studebakers when I was a child. At the time, I thought they were ugly. Now I see them as quite a sporty vehicle. After my dad died, my mother bought a '57 Chevy - but at that time I didn't think it was so "cool." Now it is considered a treasure to own one.

Yesterday my sister, her son-in-law, and I went to the show. What a show it was! This year there was a record number of cars registered: 11,500! All 50 states were represented, plus cars came from Europe and Australia. Mind you, at least 90% of these cars are completely restored, and then some! It's next to impossible to see all of them, but in the course of about 5 hours, we managed to see a lot. The state fair grounds is an excellent place to hold this affair as the permanent buildings and tree-lined streets give the feeling you are in a real town, not just some huge parking lot. Also, some of the great "fair" food is available, like mini donuts, fresh baked chocolate chip cookies, corn dogs (I had one!). Yum! Oh, and the 50's music over the loud speakers - I love it. This year we stayed for the cruising -- cars parading around the streets. As evening came, some turned on florescent lights under the carriage. Wow! It was excellent.
Note: the last two photos were taken on Monday, July 25. Subject: my co-worker, Mel, whom I missed seeing at the show.

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