In spite of all the rising waters on the Missouri River inundating farmland and communities from South Dakota to Missouri, members of the “Classics” Car Club hosted Onawa, Iowa’s 27th Annual Blast from the Past GRAFFITI NIGHT Saturday, June 18 at Michael’s Drive-In.
The event kicked-off at 4:00 p.m., but vehicles were already seen cruisin’ Onawa before noon. The event featured a number of exhibits and displays, along with some vendors, a D.J. and live remotes by Z98’s van. Black Hills Energy displayed their alternative fuel, natural gas-powered vehicle, that made the 8-hour drive to Onawa from Kansas to attend.
As part of this year’s show, the “Take a Kid to a Car Show” theme was emphasized, with over 50 youngsters in attendance designated as “Official Judges” for Kid’s Choice trophies. The youngsters were very excited about picking their favorite vehicles, and three trophies were awarded to car owners by the kids.
Throughout the afternoon, drawings were held for a large number of really nice door prizes provided by area merchants and everyone entering a vehicle received a “goodie bag” and souvenir dash plaque. Full-color souvenir Tees were also available during the event.
A special free-will offering at the registration table collected cash that the “Classics” plan to donate to (some organization that doesn’t charge administrative fees) for flood relief in Siouxland.
By 8:00 p.m., some 287 rods, kustoms and classics of every description were officially registered from Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota, Kansas and even Florida.
In addition to all this, a Poker Run at the First Place Sports Bar attracted almost 100 motorcycles as part of Sioux City’s Awesome Biker Nights. Owners stopped by and showed them off as well, while looking at all the other vehicles at Michael’s.
The Onawa Police Department led the Cruise down the Widest Main Street in the U.S.A., followed by the Z98 van and a line of cars stretching some 2 and a half miles long. Although a misunderstanding detoured us from our planned route, things got back on track as cruisers passed by Onawa’s historic Iowa Theater with the neon marquee featuring Welcome Hot Rodders to Graffiti Night.
Hundreds of people lined Iowa Avenue, Main Street and the parking lots at St. John’s, Fiesta and Sparkys. Hundreds of cool cars were received by cheers and applause as they passed by the waiting crowds.
After the Cruise, most participants headed for home, although a few opted to stay the night. Others went back to Michael’s for some more bench racing and socializing before calling it a night. There were a lot of good comments about the event all day, with many telling the Car Club and Michael’s thanks for not cancelling the event. They said they needed a little break from the stress of all the flooding going on around the area.
Thank goodness, Onawa has remained safe from flood waters and a good day was provided for the event. That teamed with all the support from local businesses, the City of Onawa, Chamber of Commerce and others, all helped to make the event such a huge success. Working together truly makes the difference.
Everyone was looking forward to telling their friends and returning to Onawa for GRAFFITI NIGHT next year!!