Wednesday morning the Classic Automobilia Tour rolled on towards its destination of St Paul and the Back to the 50's Weekend. After the daily driver's meeting in the parking of the hotel, we heading north into the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. In my 13 years of traveling on the Road Tour this is one of the only areas of the United States that I have not spent much time in. It was a great drive with smooth roads and beautiful scenery. The traffic was light and many of us were able to stay together as we made the 425 mile trip to AMSOIL's headquarters in Superior, Wisconsin. We wanted to be on time for our special get together at the new AMSOIL Center. We were to be guests of honor at a special dinner and tour of the plant.
When we got to the AMSOIL Center some of the local street rodders had already arrived. We had sent out postcards to all of the Street Rodder Magazine subscribers in a 100 mile radius of Superior. We were not sure of the turnout to expect but we did want to let folks know that the Road Tour was in town. Our tour of the incredible production facilities was very interesting when huge buildings that housed giant tanks for mixing their specialized lubricants. After the brief tour we were seated for dinner. As we enjoyed the great food we were greeted by Ed Newman, AMSOIL'S Director of Advertising at and we were honored to get a very special greeting from Al Amatuzio, the Founder and CEO of AMSOIL. Jo Coddington, the wife of the late Hot Rod Hero Boyd Coddington, and co-star of the TV show American Hot Rod spoke briefly and said how excited she was to be traveling with us to St Paul and Back to the 50's the next day.
We finished our meal and made our way out of the building to see the street rods and special interest vehicles that had turned out to greet us. What we saw as we walked into the parking area was incredible. Over 400 vehicles from the Superior area had filled the parking lot. It was an amazing sight to see so many folks turning out to say hi and let us see their cars. We spent the next few hours talking to folks about their vehicles and letting them know about our Road Tour adventures. It was another great evening on the Classic Automobilia Tour and many many thanks to all of the great team at AMSOIL who made it happen.
Thursday morning the time had come to get to our final destination of St Paul. We gathered back at the AMSOIL Center for coffee and donuts and some pictures. Jo Coddington rode with me in the Road Tour convertible and the 2 1/2 drive was extremely pleasant with more great roads and beautiful scenery. Our plan was to have lunch in a St Paul suburb and get some event info from Pete Emeott, a member of the Board of Directors of the Minnesota Street Rod Association. Pete had undertaken the task of being our liaison with the MSRA to help make our visit as enjoyable and trouble free as possible. Pete had prepared well and handed out maps and instructions for the best route to registration and the easiest way to enter the fairgrounds each morning. We were show on a map the location of our Street Rodder Road Tour hospitality tent and with all of this knowledge we felt much more confident about our weekend adventure at Back to the 50's. Thanks Pete for a job well done.
Friday morning things were off and running at the fairgrounds. Manned with Pete's maps and info the entry was fairly painless and soon we had set up camp in our area of the grounds. The weekend was spent enjoying the incredible spectacle that is the Back to the 50's Weekend. The fairgrounds are beautiful with tree lined streets and traffic flow that permitted non- stop cruising. Over 11,700 registered vehicles covered the grounds. The food was fantastic with choices ranging from the popular pork chop on a stick to cheese curds and great fresh baked chocolate chip cookies. I am assuming that Doctor Paul back in Youngstown is not reading this since after my last routine checkup he suggested I watch my diet and cholesterol. I promise I will start tomorrow. On Saturday afternoon it was time to take a group picture of the Classic Automobilia participants. It had been a fun week on the road and once again friendships were forged that will last a lifetime. We also got a chance to meet the new folks who are traveling on the Golden RodTronics Tour to the NSRA Rocky Mountain Nationals in Pueblo Colorado. After the photo shoot the Classic Automoblia Tour participants loaded on to a very cool bus provided by the Detour Street Rod Club and we were treated to a tour of the beautiful fairgrounds.
It was a wonderful week on the Tour. Monday morning the Golden RodTronics Tour leaves from nearby Mankato, Minnesota and heads to Pueblo. We have 20 cars registered and many adventures planned including a tour of the Speedway Motors Museum. Check back here for all the updates as the PPG/Street Rodder Road Tour heads west.