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Car Show: Andy’s Picnic ”The Way It Was”

Andy’s Picnic ”The Way It Was”

Italian Benevolent Picnic Grounds, Sutter Creek, California
Sunday, August 19, 2012
Photos by: Sherm Porter

When the word went out that Andy ‘The Rodfather’ Brizio was bringing back his picnic, one more time, Sue & Andy had no idea it would explode in to this…

On top of the picnic, Andy celebrated his 80th birthday with a few hundred (780) of his close friends Saturday evening at the Italian Benevolent Society Picnic Grounds, in Sutter Creek…

Many of the street rodders showed up earlier in the week, to take advantage of the beautiful foothill towns, as impromptu drives were planned on the spot…’let’s go to Jackson, or Sutter Creek or maybe run up to Volcano for lunch’, as our club, San Luis Roadsters, combined with Bay Area Roadsters did on Friday and Saturday…

Saturday evening, with cool breezes replacing the heat of the day, everyone gathered at the Picnic Grounds (Sue had even arranged shuttle buses from the hotels) to honor and celebrate Andy’s birthday…no one left hungry, as the members of the Italian Benevolent Society provided an outstanding dinner, with no-hosts bars on both sides of the affair…

Sunday, bright and early (they had to open the gates an hour early to accommodate the crowd) more than 650 pre-49 street rods found parking places, and get this, many of the attendees have been showing up since the early day Andy’s Picnics, and even some with the same car!

A bit of history, Andy’s Picnic began in 1966, with about 30 cars meeting at Ott’s Drive-In in San Francisco, cruising to Morton’s Hot Springs in Sonoma...1967 brought about 60 cars, cruising to Wild Horse Ranch in Napa…1968 Turtle Rock Park at the top of Mt. Diablo, Walnut Creek had 100 cars…

In 1969 the Picnic moved to Crow Canyon Park in Castro Valley, where it remained through 1977, with 200-300 cars showing up each year…

In 1978, Andy moved the Picnic to the Vallejo-Solano County Fairgrounds, with 400-800 cars attending, and musical groups including Jan & Dean, The Ventures and Tower Of Power performing…it remained at this location until the last Picnic was held, in 1996…

“That’s The Way It Was”
 


 

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