(Grand Rapids, MN) – One of my favorite shows to attend, the annual Northern Cruisers Car Club Weekend of Wheels. Held each year at the end of July on a Saturday in Grand Rapids, MN and this is only half of the fun weekend with another car show the following day.
For the last few years I have been attending and look forward to this one each year. The morning starts off early, usually up around 5am. All the preparations have been done the week and night before. Usually with the help of friends I'm able to take a couple cars. We get up early, have some coffee and doughnuts. Try to get the sleep out of our eyes and get ready for the drive. The show starts at 7am and takes about an hour to get there.
Upon arriving everything is well organized and check in is a breeze. They have you pull around for a photo shoot of your car and then you are free to park your car for the show. With a huge parking lot to park all the cars and breakfast waiting for the early arrivals the day is set. The weather has always been sunny and warm the years I have gone. The civic center building is open and AC on if you need to cool off. Bathrooms also located in the building and are kept clean during the day.
Many classes available to enter your hot rod. This is a judged show vs. the typical participant voting at most of the car shows up here. Cars are scored on outside appearance, interior, under the hood and trunk. Each class has a 1st and 2nd place winner. Awards are announced after the dinner provided at the show and those pictures taken earlier at the photo shoot are used with the awards. Each participant also has the option to purchase the picture taken of their ride.
During the long day if you tire of the shiny rides and other goings-on you can take a walk to the fairgrounds. Huge swap meet with everything from car parts to antiques and a car coral. The car show on Sunday is held here and trust me... you can spend 2 days at the swap if you want to meander around.
The Northern Cruisers really know how to do a great show. Breakfast of pancakes, sausage, juice and coffee available for breakfast for a reasonable price. Lunch on site also available, again the cost is reasonable and a variety of eats. A chicken dinner is included with entry fee of each car for 2 people, more tickets available as needed and is quite the spread.
After the dinner there is a poker run for those that want to take a cruise. Stops are at local parking lots and fields. Each stop you are given a sealed card and once all cars return to the civic center the cards are opened. Poker hands checked and prizes given for the best hands + the best part.... The Cruise!.
This year saw more than 200 cars at the show and often this show has cars you will not see up here during the other shows of the year. Quite a few travel down from Canada and surrounding areas. There are always some special and rare rides to drool over. This year was no exception and I'm looking forward to the 29th Annual and beyond.