Classics: Dream Cruise Top 10
Classic car enthusiasts spend years perfecting their antiques: painting, polishing and often bringing them back to driving form. And then, they descend upon Woodward each summer to show off their hard work. Here are a few of this weekend's classic muscle cars.
10. Hitching a ride
Only two seats inside? No problem for the owners of this El Camino.
9. Fiery Ford
Muscles and flames combined in this 1951 Ford.
8. Labor of love
Ron Barclay, 77, of Gilberts, Illinois, spent three years working on this 1958 Pontiac Bonneville. He completely stripped, restored and painted the vehicle, now sporting the original Pontiac Chief Theme.
He calls it: "My Dream Catcher."
The background was a blur as this cruiser took to Woodward.
6. Vintage PD
Some cruise in classics and some show off oddities, while others take to the Dream Cruise in vintage police cars at the Lights and Sirens Parade in Ferndale.
5. Souped up engine
David Rowland, of Wooster, Ohio stumbled upon and purchased a rare Mustang back in the late 1970s -- and didn't know its history until about a year later.
"It's one of 531 that was built with a 429 Super Cobra Jet engine," Rowland said of his 1971 Ford Mustang Mach 1. "At the time, I didn't know about it being anything special except it was a Mustang and I like Mustangs."
He bought the car from a local man who also missed its significance, Rowland said. Within a year, spectators at local car shows began to fill him in on his golden find.
Since then, it's been maintenance work only for the rare Mustang.
"It’s been repainted a couple times, I redid the interior and freshened up the motor," said Rowland, 61. "I don’t call it a nuts and bolts restoration because I never tore it down."
This weekend's visit to the Dream Cruise wasn't a new trip for the car enthusiast.
"I've been up there probably eight times," Rowland said. "I go to Mustang Alley; I want to see the other Mustangs that are there, and I enjoy seeing the other cars cruising up and down Woodward."
Future visits will be harder to plan. A granddaughter turned one year old Friday, with a birthday that may interfere with future Dream Cruises, Rowland said with a laugh.
4. T-Birds (and Pink Ladies)
We've got the T-Birds, so where are the Pink Ladies?
3. Rain drops
Threats of rain couldn't keep dedicated Cruisers away from Woodward Saturday.
2. Double classics
One classic seen through the windshield of another.
1. Tween Cruiser
Thirteen-year-old Paige Paulsell got her start restoring classics alongside her father.
"I grew up around Mustangs and my dad restoring them so I wanted to restore one," said Paige, the owner of a bright red 1965 Ford Mustang that was on display this weekend at Mustang Alley on Nine Mile in Ferndale. The middle school student did most of the vehicle's restoration after kick starting her hobby by helping her dad on his cars.
"My dad is colorblind so I help him with wiring, and I'm very observant. I watch him," Paige said. "We have a lot of other classic cars and I've helped him on most of them."
Paige and her family, from Crockett, California, flocked to the Dream Cruise during a family vacation, she said. The goal was to show off her Mustang, purchased about one year ago.
"Originally I had a different car but it was basically a rust bucket," she said. "Then we got this (Mustang) and I switched to it. I've had a bit of help from (my dad) on some of the stuff. He's really fun to work with."
The ride may need a new paint job in the coming years but is otherwise in tip-top shape, Paige said. It sports a license plate reading "PAGSPNY", or "Paige's Pony."
What's next for the girl who already owns a restored classic? Her learner's permit.
"I get to start learning to drive at 15 and a half and my license I'll probably have by the time I'm 16 and a half," she said.
That makes it around two years before Paige can get behind the wheel of her Mustang.
"I'm guessing it's gonna be pretty fun," she said.