It is with great excitement and anticipation that we announce our first ever event, The Rodder's Journal Vintage Speed and Custom Revival. What we have in mind is an old fashioned outdoor car show (or what we used to call a rod run) and you are all invited. We think it is going to be a lot of fun.
We know that the first thing that may come to mind is "does the world need another car show?" The same thing was said when we first started talking about publishing TRJ. The world didn't need another car magazine, but we have been able to carve out a niche with a different kind of car magazine. Our goal is to bring the spirit of what we do in print to a live in-person event for a weekend.
What we want to do is meet, interact and get to know as many of you as possible over a couple of days this fall. The event will take place on September 28-30, 2012 in Baltimore, Maryland. We wanted to do our first event in the Mid-Atlantic states since it is the area that has the greatest number of TRJ readers within a days drive, and the Baltimore area is centrally located within this region. This gives a large number of people the opportunity to attend. I am originally from Maryland and although I have made my home in California for years, I have always been a big supporter and proponent of this area that centers around the Chesapeake Bay. It is as they used to say the "land of pleasant living."
Over the years we've had the opportunity to attend and participate in literally hundreds if not thousands of car shows, and I have thoroughly enjoyed doing so. We are taking a similar approach to developing this event as we did with creating the magazine. We never reinvented the wheel, but we did present traditional rods and customs in a fresh light, perhaps from a fresh perspective. The TRJ Revival will be centered around traditional rods and customs, but we hope to have a weekend that is indeed a new and rewarding experience.
So specifically, what do we have planned? We have secured a great location in a picturesque setting. We will bring a weekend of cool cars together with good people and plenty of activity. We will make the cars the focus of the event, but we will also feature plenty of good live music, good food (seafood in this area is second to none) and we have a cruise planned that takes a scenic route along the Chesapeake Bay. We also have hotels and nightlife lined up that are conducive to nighttime cruising. Our plan is to provide plenty of activities, but not really require anybody to do much of anything. We want it to be a laid-back affair.
Any hot rod or custom car up to 1965 is welcome, however, if appropriate we will allow select later-model cars by invitation. We're thinking that if it looked like it cruised Bellflower Blvd. in Larry Watson's heyday or made a pass at the NHRA Indy Nationals before Don Garlits decided to sit in front of the engine, than it will be welcome. Panel painted '66-'67 Rivieras, Fuel Altereds and the like will be encouraged to attend. We are organizing what we are tentively calling the Competition Concours. It won't be a concours in the traditional formally judged way. But we are inviting a good number of vintage drag, Bonneville and circle track cars that will be displayed in a special area. A couple of famous racers from days gone by have promised to attend and are looking forward to bench racing, talking about their exploits, and checking out the attending machinery. Cars that have been featured in The Rodder's Journal will be on display in a special area.
What we want to do is meet, interact and get to know as many of you as possible over a couple of days this fall."
One of our most rewarding recent experiences has been working on our Scrapbook. We intend to have a Scrapbook party one evening, and we encourage everyone to bring their old photos and memorabilia whether it's from the first decade of the Street Rod Nationals, drag racing back in the '50s and '60s or an old high school car club. We've loved getting to know the guys that contributed to Scrapbook and we look forward to doing this on a grander scale. We expect old photos and collectibles to come out of the woodwork and we'll be on the lookout for material for TRJ as well as future book projects. It should be a fun evening.
We'll have live music on the event sight and we're organizing cruising to venues that will provide plenty of good music at night with plenty of rod and custom only parking. Whether you came of age making annual pilgrimages to the Indy Nationals every Labor Day weekend in the '60s, fondly remember all of the hotel to hotel cruising at early Street Rod Nationals, or cruised Van Nuys Blvd. on Wednesday night, we're working really hard to replicate the very best of nighttime cruising that has been part of our culture for more than half a century. Candy and 'Flake paint never looks better than when in motion under the lights.
This is an opportunity to widen the scope of our search for feature cars. We will pick four cars, each from a different state, and shoot them for an upcoming issue. They will be selected from owners who have never had a car featured in TRJ. We will also do low light and nighttime photography of the event itself for the magazine, our website and email blasts.
I hope that I have given an idea of what to expect at The Rodder's Journal Revival, but here is what you won't see. We won't have formal points-type judging although we will have individuals and even groups, presenting low-key awards. We will be less formal than a lot of events. And we can guarantee that our cruise night won't end at dusk. We plan to have a good time.
We've mentioned the Revival to some of our friends and there are already tour groups that plan on making the trek to the show from relatively long distances. We'll keep you updated, and you are welcome to join these groups along the way.
More details will be arriving shortly, but the best way to stay informed is to sign up for our e-mail newsletter, which you can do directly on our website, or follow us on Facebook. A special section of our website is dedicated to this event, where you can find the latest updates and also complete your show registration. We hope to see you there.