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Car Show: NSRA Northeast Street Rod Nationals – Plus Part 1

NSRA Northeast Street Rod Nationals – Plus Part 1

Champlain Valley Expo, Burlington, VT
Friday, September 21, 2012
Photos by: Walt Smolenski

On Saturday, Sept.22nd, I rolled out of bed at 4:00 A.M. to get ready to meet up with a couple of my Buddies, Charlie Slesinski and Dave Wickles, for a 3+ hour ride to Burlington, Vt. for the NSRA NorthEast Nationals. After watching the extended weather forecasts for a week, and watching the forecast go back and forth between good and bad, we decided to NOT believe the weatherman and go anyhow, and as it turned out we were glad we did! Our day was cut a little short as the rain came about 3:00, but we were all tired and ready for a good meal at Chili's before making the trek back home.

Lots of nice cars as usual! Met up with a lot of old friends and made some new ones, surprising as I'm such a shy guy - HAAHAA!! I unexpectedly got to see a really neat chopped, channeled '27 coupe that I saw in Street Rodder magazine a couple of years ago; It belongs to Paul Duval and he brought it up from North Carolina, where he now lives, to visit family in New Hampshire and to go to the show. A really neat little car and made even more interesting when he told me how he modeled the top chop after the KingPin "T", a fantastic "T" coupe built by Bill Osiakowski of San Jose, California where Bill's shop, KingPin Hot Rods, is located! It's really interesting because Bill happens to be one of my Best Friends - Small World!  Paul let me sit in his coupe and he became the photographer at my request so I'd have a couple of pictures of me in his coupe. I'm finally realizing that a channeled car might not be my cup of "T" as getting in and out of it can be quite a chore for an Old Geezer like me; Who do I think I'm kidding - everyone that knows me knows that a little channeld coupe has always been my fantasy and will continue to be till I kick off.

I rounded the corner of one of the buildings and all of a sudden I hear "Hey Walt"; It's Jim Mosher and his better-half (Mrs. Jim); how's that for an almost save for my Old Age memory catching up with me)!  Jim owns a little chopped and channeled Deuce Coupe that I've wanted to buy for years, but he's NOT ready to sell it(I doubt that he will ever be ready to sell it or that I'd have the $$$ to buy it); My Buddy Carl and I affectionately refer to Jim's car as the WoodPecker coupe as it carries the Clay Smith Cams Mr. HorsePower graphic on it's side. Jim then dares me to find the one thing that he's changed since last year - You know it's subtle and a challenge since I'm lucky to see it once a year. Hey Jim, I got it -It's the mileage that's changed!!!

Next I see Dave Motika and his Wife Nancy from back home; And then I meet up with some more of the local guys from back home(Gary Cunningham, Tom & Jack S.(Hey Guys, I don't know how to spell your last name);Remember, I'm a Old Polack!!!  We shot the bull for a while and then I was off like a shot to take more pictures - Where the Hell have Charlie and Dave been for the past couple of hours? Dave has quite a stable of cars, including his original High School car, a '69 GTO Judge that has now undergone a full rotisserie restoration, and is now a Concours Winner! I soon found out where they were - In my pictures you'll see quite the little(and I mean little GTO Judge) - A Shorty that's really got Dave's attention - Man, that would look great next to his Judge in his Car Guy's Man Cave that's nearing completion - We'll see what materializes!

I Ran into Frank Carey and Grace, now living in Florida, but always making the trip back here to see family and attend some of Frank's favorite shows every year; Frank's got the '37 sedan Cop Car and he usually has the hat on to go with it; Didn't see the hat this time, but got a picture of him with a big grin on his face thru the window. I met Frank thru the Internet and we finally met in person at this show several years ago. He also became one of HOTRODHOTLINE's photographers a couple of years ago. Off again with my little ol' Kodak camera in tow.

Next I was taking pictures of a car that belongs to a couple (George & Krista) I met at the GoodGuys' Show in Springfield, Ma. George let me know he was nearby with a "Walt, hey Walt, have you had lunch yet?" He wants me to take a break and have a sandwich with him as Krista was off shopping at the Women's World Building; Guessing it was actually Krista's sandwich I opted for a couple of cookies she had made instead and then I was off again looking for an Auburn that George knew I'd want to take a picture of; or two, or three or six pictures of - A beautiful Resto-Rod and Viper powered to boot!!!
In a short time I was stopped dead in my tracks looking at a spectacular Tall-T coupe; A car from Canada next to an OZE '37 Coupe, both owned by a real nice Canadian Guy whose name escapes me - Damn I hate getting old; Turns out he and his son are the previous owners of OZE Street Rods, but they sold the business in 2010. Yup, the Old Polack sitting in the "T" is me - Boy, it was so much easier getting in an out of it compared to Paul's little canneled car. If the keys had been in either of those cars I might never have been seen or heard from again - HAAHAA again!!! By the way, Dave bought his Wife a '37 Coupe at the Syracuse Nats a couple of years ago and it just so happens it's an OZE body - Small world again!

There's where the local Guys parked their cars; There's John Y. and Pete F.; Gotta talk with them for a while - Hope I don't get a sore throat from too much talking!!!

What's going on? Those are pretty nasty looking clouds - yep, it's starting to rain. Time to meet up with Charlie and Dave and see what the plan of escape is; Ooops, there's Donnie Allen and Pat in his Chevy Sedan; Glad I got to see them before leaving - They're from back home and since I don't get to many shows anymore it's always nice to see them. I had put a HOTRODHOTLINE decal and one of my cards under his windshield wiper to let him  know I was at the show and that I took some pictures of his car for my event coverage.

Gotta get back to see Jerry Dixey with the Road Tour '40 Ford coupe and renew my magazines subscriptions before we leave the grounds; Man that is one fantastic coupe and Jerry leaves tomorrow in it to get back to California for another show; what a deal, 2 years of Street Rodder AND 2 years of Rod & Custom for $30.00 - But the Best deal is still HOTRODHOTLINE on the Internet for FREE!!!
Oh, there's Ken with his Pro-Street Camaro - a 572" under the hood - And it's got a '55 Chevy dash - How unique is that! I met Ken thru fellow HOTRODHOTLINE Photographer Tom Poremba; Tom and I met thru HOTRODHOTLINE and have become real good Friends bugging each other almost daily thru the Internet and meeting up at some shows; Charlie and I have to force him to have a beer with us occasionally - Believe that and... Oh, I'm repeating myself again...

I gave out many, many HOTRODHOTLINE decals and my Photographer's card as I preached the Gospel of HOTRODHOTLINE; An easy task as HOTRODHOTLINE is the BEST site on the Internet for Car Guys. Unreal how many people you meet by telling them about the WebSite and taking pictures of their cars to share with fellow Car Guys. It's even more unreal how many remember you at another show, even a year or longer later. I hope my memory holds out for a while longer, but I already forgot the names of a couple people I just met at this show - Could it be I met and talked to too many people - NAHHH, couldn't be!

Well Guys, I'm not sure if I'll make it to the Capital Area Street Rods Nostalgia Drags, Show & Swap Meet next weekend at Lebanon Valley Dragway or any more shows, etc.  I've enjoyed meeting so many of you and yakking about cars and sharing my pictures with you. Keep on Rodding, enjoying HOTRODHOTLINE and enjoy the trip, 'cuz it's only one way!!! Life's short, so drive a Hot Rod! I only wish I'd take my own GREAT advice - Maybe next lifetime!!!  Take Care!  Walt (The Street Rodder w/o a street rod)



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