METRO Cruise, August 29th, 2009
The West Michigan METRO CRUISE is a great car event, free for all cars & drivers, and all spectators whom gather along the corso of 28th Street to watch and see the thousands of cool rides parading by. This annual event draws some 380,000 spectators and about 15,000 hot rods, foreign marques, and exotic restored classics and antiques of all types, including drivers. It was held last Saturday, August 29th, noonish til the past dark, up und down all 15 miles of 28th Street through Grandville, Wyoming, Grand Rapids to Cascade, Michigan.
It has Venue spots for a show of high-end classic and antique collectible cars, also to included a Swap Meet, a Car Corral, a Safety City for families to learn all about car and family safety, a Manufacturer's Midway, a Classic Car Auction, Entertainment Stages, Hop-Off Competitions and more.
West Mich Alfa Owners got together at the casually designated Italiano Car Park, along with the Lancia-Fiat Club, located at Pietro's Italian Restaurante, 2780 Birchcrest, 1/2 block west of Breton & 28th St., turn right up Birchcrest drive, just past Tile Store on North side of 28th.
The lot affords a nice raised view of passing classico vehicles on parade on 28th, and Pietro's great food and thirsty bar right there; Nostra Casa ‘e Vostra Casa.
Prior to the big evento of the METRO Cruise, I washed the car, dried it and gave a light coating of Meguiar's Gold Class wax out so it shined nice enough to look like new, and wiped Black ice inside, so it was the old in & out once over; smells like rich dead cows inside with all new leather, wiped down dash & tires with shine preservative..which 21st century as it is, actually has a plastic component in the formula (black ice?) to renew dash. Love the smell of polymers in the morning.
Went into work orifice for momento; went over to FOX Kia/Hyundia about noonish, no one there, VIP spectator stands empty, signed in, got the free t-shirt…no food in sight, went back to 29th and down to Breton to get out on 28th Street by Pietro's Restaurant…Mark wasn’t there, went inside & had a Moretti La Rossa, waited, Mark's brother Bruce showed up & met his girlfriend, we called Sparky & he was with Scott (!) at Harvey Cadillac for the Caddy show, then he came right down (minus Scott; miss talking to ever informative Scott: he was there w/my late sister Patty, my brother Tom, and Mark at Waterveliet Raceway in 1976 when I took my pristine new GTV 2000 airborne, yes like practiced AR Ranger, so way-back we go)….nice chitchat talk-talk-talk…there were 4-5 Fiats & owners from the FLU (Ultra Radical Fiat~Lancia Unlimited Club)…and Mark had a nice friend Randy with him chumming around…besides Mark's '66 Guilia Sprint GT, blk/red and his powder blue/white restored Fiat Multipla, there were assortment of Fiats 124 Spider, X 1/9, 124 Pini coupe, etc. Nice group of cars and people.
We all went in and had lunch at Pietro’s and was molto benni excellanti?! Yet, was SO DARK in there it was annoying: remind me to carry a LED flashlight with, next time? …really pretty steady-busy with diners, too. Great to see that. Since mein home made pizza was shambles last week, I had wood oven pizza with strewn tomatoes, pepperoni & anchovy...huge 11-12" not so personal thin crust, wonderfully rich and expressive basil clad pie. Chow/ciao, is a bargain at $7.49, and I absolutely demolished the whole thing. ..but that was it for carbs for the day.
I wish to heck about 5 more Alfas & our members had shown up there; do I have to pay for their gas? Ha... Oh well, we all get busy with life, yes? I was going to do an call event Friday night but I fell asleep at 830 so awfully tired from work!!
Yes, a Friday night, din, wine, sheep, er sleep @830...it happens.
But, the Metro Cruise crowd size up & down the 15 miles of 28th street from Grandville to Cascade, still estimated at around 150,000 regardless of the cool cloudy weather, and the number of cars parading back and forth, near 10,000! What an great interesting & constantly changing event …always something new to see…really the weather 65d, cool, cloudy, a touch too much breeze & occasional misty just made it very tolerable venue versus the baking heat wave of last year? Last year it was 95d and I was only outside for 5 min at a time, wrapped in a damp yurt for protection.
After lunch we followed Mark back to his lair in the classic garage storage back dealer bldg... After he parked and put up the ’47 Jaguar, we helped him disassemble off a perfect light blue metallic hood (bonnet) off a equally perfecto 1968 Jag XKE drop head (convertible). Having done this 6-8 times in der past, I help with calling shots, himself wrenching...the book didn't say anything about releasing off bushing -si, is there regardless. He did a really great job per usual. We then carried the monstrous #165 pound Forbes Egg-like delicate structure across the garage to carefully put it out of the way…he’ll be doing some diagnostica work for owner to fix oil leak. “Oil leak” I said, “all Jag’s leak oil…until they’re warm –like Alfa’s!”
The garage ist delights itself, housing a veritable Willy Wonka of automobilia exotica for a lost 20 yr old brain somehow still attached & semi-functioning to gent gearhead like mein ownself, ja? There is amongst the 50+ assortment aof nice cars: a ’66 GTO 49,000 miles perfecto original driver, like my 1967 GTO convertible (what am I goofy? for selling it) and original 1968 GT500 Shelby Mustang; I could hardly catch my breath at times, the air was so rare. …Oh my.
We story-told our way around the whole garage. Absolutely a blast…then back to stand outside watch the show and kibitz at Pietro’s…they are so nice to provide a spot & we should do a West Michigan Alfa Romeo Owners meet there for dinner!
Then it was 4 pm and my tether was about to be re-activated (yes, my Italian bride has a remote), and I had to buy 6-20 more btls of wine that Dave had on speciale at GB Russo's… so I left to go shop, go home and be bored & berated the rest of the weekend…Ha & HiHo.
On the moving Metro Cruise show on 28th Street, that Saturday I saw a wht/blue stripe Ford GT, a white Countach, Bentley Cont GT silver & a granite Flying Spur, two Pantera’s, one Chinese fire orange-ish another black, group 5 fairings, 1983 308 GTS blk/blk, approx. 4,000 matching number Chevelle 396’s (apparently all worth $90,000 a piece at Barrett-Jackson Circus Auction), saw the new silver Aston DB9 again on Sunday, and a ’00 Aston DB7 Vantage, Brit Racing Green/blk, 29K miles for $45k ask money ---what a mechanical nightmare on 4 wheels, unless thou be retired and ‘handy’ engineer skilled like unto our WMARO member Bruce?
Really, if'n the weather had been as lovely as Sunday's was, it would’ve been a out ‘till 9-11 at night type worthy event –it is still such a blast!
Next year we’ll have to have one of those free standing pop-up awnings und hang on our 9' ALFA banner, get more members there (gas money? free food?) and a keg of Pironi birra/beer, platters of hors d’oeuvres e anti pasta, and a couple pizzas from Pietro's, and really throw a wing-ding?
Si – a plan?
Last edited by gtv_john; 09-01-2009 at 07:15 AM.
Reason: bad eyes, bad German creeps into writing