Can­ter­bury USA Day

New Zealand Classic Car - - Nationwide News Classic News & Views From All Arou - Words and Pho­tos Trevor Stan­ley-joblin

Or­ga­nized by the Amer­i­can Clas­sic Car Club, this event had hum­ble be­gin­nings, with the in­au­gu­ral Amer­i­can Spring Cruise be­ing held by the club in Oc­to­ber of 1996. Nine­tysix ve­hi­cles at­tended that first event. Since then, car num­bers have in­creased to over 300, and the show moved from the orig­i­nal Waikuku Beach venue to Glad­stone Park in 2006.

Bat­tery Town is the ma­jor spon­sor of the event, and the show fea­tures trade stalls, en­ter­tain­ment, and an amaz­ing ar­ray of Amer­i­can ve­hi­cles.

There was a time when I was as guilty as the next per­son and would com­pletely over­look the com­mer­cial ve­hi­cles on dis­play at any car show. How­ever, I will ad­mit that my at­ti­tude to th­ese ve­hi­cles has com­pletely changed. Some of the most in­ter­est­ing utes, pick­ups and trucks were present at the show — es­pe­cially

ap­peal­ing when they still carry orig­i­nal or cur­rent sign­writ­ing.

Pre-war cars that I found to be out­stand­ing in­cluded a ’34 Ford V8 road­ster, ’36 Oldsmo­bile four-door, ’39 Buick Spe­cial coupé and a ’37 Ford V8 flat­back. There is no doubt about it, those cars man­u­fac­tured in the never-to-be-re­peated golden years of ex­trav­a­gance are just some­thing else.

This event is al­ways good value, with en­try at only $5 per per­son, and chil­dren un­der 12 free. If you’re in­ter­ested in next year’s show, look the club up at amer­i­can­clas­s­ic­car­club.co.nz.

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