As the 2021 edition of the annual Good Times Cruise-In was getting underway Saturday morning, Sept. 11, car show president Riccardo Sestito was trying to squeeze a few late-arriving vehicles in.
“We’re trying to jam as many cars as we can,” Sestito told the Langley Advance Times, “trying to find nooks and crannies.”
It was a sell-out.
With 1,200 participants showing up – a record for the Aldergrove version of the show – cars and trucks were lined up along Fraser highway from 264th Street to 274th Street, with everything from small import cars to gigantic military trucks.
And it almost didn’t happen, Sestito revealed.
It wasn’t until Wednesday that it was a definite go, after what Sestito described as “stressful” discussions with provincial health officials to work out COVID-19 precautions.
Sesisto said there was no outright opposition to the show going ahead, but there were some “grey areas” that had to be clarified to make sure the event would meet health regulations.
“Everybody was working to resolve it,” Sestito noted.
“We met everything that was required [as it turned out].”
For Aldergrove resident Bruce Lowery, the event was an opportunity to show off his one-of-a-kind hot rod, built on the chassis of a heavily modified lawn tractor.
Lowery said the whimsical ride was originally built for the late, legendary B.C. hot rodder “Fast Eddie”Bressler, about 30 years ago, for parades and car shows.
Lowery rescued it from storage and restored it to driving condition, saying he couldn’t stand the thought of it “rotting away.”
“I finally got it running about three years ago,” Lowery commented.
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Glen Valley resident Ron Kitteringham brought his 1964 Dodge Polara 500.
It is a unique model, one of a very few built to celebrate the 64th anniversary of the Dodge motor company, he said.
“I bought it brand-new,” Kitteringham explained.
But after many years as a daily driver, when the Dodge failed to pass Air Care, he sold it.
Then, about five years ago, he got a phone call that his car was back in the Lower Mainland.
“Someone spotted it in a shed,” Kitteringham recalled.
It had been neglected, but not beyond repair.
“It had mice in it, and rust on the hood, but it ran pretty good.”
Now reunited with its original owner, it still has the original interior, and other than the redone hood, it is all orginal paint, that just needed a polish.
Sgt. Chris Nightingale of the Abbotsford Police Department (APD) arrived with “Carol”, a restored 1965 Chevrolet Biscayne police cruiser in the black-and-white livery of the Matsqui Police Department.
Named after the late Inspector Carol Powell, the car honours the history of the police force that operated as the Matsqui Police Department for 40 years, then 25 years as the APD, after the communities of Matsqui and Abbotsford amalgamated to become the City of Abbotsford.
Nightingale said the car was bringing back a lot of fond memories for the classic car fans he spoke to.
“It’s pretty cool,” Nightingale said.
More photos from the day can found online.
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