34th Annual Daytona Beach Turkey Run - Sun, Cars & Stuffing
34th Annual Daytona Beach Turkey Run
From the May, 2008 issue of Street Rodder
By Carroll Hamilton
In 1973, several Daytona Beach area hot rodders attempted to enter their hot rods in a local antique car show, but they were told their style of cars was not welcome. With that rejection, the Daytona Beach Turkey Run began the following year at a local shopping center parking lot. After several venue changes, the original 45-car count has grown to more than 5,000 car show entrants, and the event now takes place in the giant infield of the Daytona International Speedway.
In addition to the car show, the largest swap meet on the East Coast takes place with more than 1,200 spaces filled, plus more than 1,500 car corral spots. Add in a craft show and a giant food court, and you have a real party. If all of that is not enough, you have "official" evening activities held just outside of the speedway. Slow drags, flame-throwing, vendors, music, and the like all combine to add even more fun.
Bob Bronson of Tampa, FL,...
Bob Bronson of Tampa, FL, cruised in with his 318 Mopar-powered '33 Dodge that is bathed in Go Mango Orange and black.
Daytona Beach and the surrounding area also embrace the Turkey Run crowds. Bruce Rossmeyer's Destination Daytona hosts Turkeyfest II on Friday and Saturday nights; the Main Street Merchants hold an evening car show with music, food, and fun along the street made famous by Daytona's Bike Week; and Bel Air Plaza, the site of the first Turkey Run, still draws a crowd every evening. The four-day event is actually moving toward a nine-day venue as more participants roll into the area the weekend prior to the event and stay through the following weekend.
The same local club that started the Turkey Run, the Daytona Beach Street Rods, continues to host the event, with all proceeds from the show car portion going to support local charities, focusing on the Special Olympics. The Daytona Beach Racing & Recreational Facilities District donates the proceeds from the swap meet and car corral to support recreational activities and facilities in the Daytona Beach area.
As we strolled around, we saw the traditional rod-door handles, rubber running boards, bumpers, and so on-continuing to grow in numbers, as well as whitewalls and chrome wheels. We spotted a few up-in-the-air gassers, and, as always, a large number of cool customs.
The Rumblers, out of Orlando, Florida, along with the Poor Boys from Tampa, represented the rat rod contingent, staging a big gathering on Saturday afternoon.
Warm weather, "The Worlds Most Famous Beach," a great car show, a huge swap meet, thousands of fellow rodders-it all makes the Thanksgiving weekend Turkey Run a must-see event every holiday season. Be sure to visit www.turkeyrun.com for information about the 2008 event.
James and Penny Vogel brought...
James and Penny Vogel brought their '39 Ford sedan delivery down from Lewisburg, PA, and enjoyed a weekend of Turkey Run fun.
We caught Port Orange, FL,...
We caught Port Orange, FL, resident Bill Rafter parking his '39 Ford coupe so he could get ready for the day's activities. A detailed small-block, silver flames over a flawless mulberry finish, and a cream leather interior make this one fine ride.
Ed Meehan came up the coast...
Ed Meehan came up the coast from Fort Lauderdale, FL, in his beautiful yellow '32 Ford roadster, which sports a DuVall windshield, bumpers, rubber boards, and wide whites with steelies and caps, topped off by a blue Hartz cloth top. It doesn't get much better than this.
The larger rear side window...
The larger rear side window on this '37 Ford coupe marks it as a club coupe, meaning it has a back seat. Ron Simmons out of St. Cloud, FL, owns this black beauty.
A little chill in the early...
A little chill in the early morning air means sweatshirts, especially in an open T roadster. The chill was gone as the sun came up, and everyone enjoyed four great days of rodding.
Red wire wheels, Flathead,...
Red wire wheels, Flathead, magneto, louvers, shiny black paint, and red interior all say traditional. And that is just what Norman and Barbara McDonald of Clover, SC, had in mind when they built this beauty.
How many '41 Studebaker sedans...
How many '41 Studebaker sedans have you seen? New Smyrna Beach, FL, resident Patty Snead's ride features small-block Chevy power, suicide doors, filled seams, and candy tangerine paint.
Wide whites on polished five-spokes...
Wide whites on polished five-spokes highlight this four-door Nash Lafayette.
Chuck Chovonech drives The...
Chuck Chovonech drives The Crapshooter, a former circle-track racer now turned hot rod, around his hometown of South Park, PA. It looks like a fun ride to us.
Bonnie and Clyde preferred...
Bonnie and Clyde preferred '34 Ford two-door sedans, but we'll bet they would have taken John and Dottie Hartz's four-door in a pinch, especially if they knew it had a big-block Chevy under the hood.
Wide whites, Moon discs, and...
Wide whites, Moon discs, and bright turquoise paint highlight Don Pearson's '46 Chevrolet pickup truck out of Clermont, FL.
Tommy Lumley brought his real...
Tommy Lumley brought his real BB/G '40 Chevy down from Charlotte, NC. He said this car was a Southern California gasser and ran 8.30 at 156 mph, and the paint is 30 years old.
There was no information card,...
There was no information card, but this nicely done Model A sedan delivery was lookin' good in the Florida sun.
We saw a lot of sedan deliveries...
We saw a lot of sedan deliveries in the form of hot-rodded '34 Chevrolets, traditional Model As, and this Xtra Special Delivery.