Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Cruisin' The Gut: The Cars Take Over Downtown Vancouver Saturday the 16th, 2016

They slow up traffic, they rev their engines and they drink a lot of beer... all in plain sight of the Vancouver Police. The noisy hot rods are welcomed with open arms in Vancouver, Washington once a year. This is Cruisin' the Gut and it's a huge event. This year, come to Vancouver for this fun event on Saturday July 16th starting at 10 a.m.

Cruisin' the Gut
Cruisin' the Gut was founded in 2009 by Phil Medina who used to cruise Highway 99 as a teenager. The event is now part classic car parade and part street party. People come from all over to show off their cars, share stories, meet old friends or just hang out.

Early Saturday morning last July as I drove south from Longview, I saw them. Interspersed with the normal traffic of new cars and trucks, were flashy hot rods and beautifully restored classic cars. They were headed to Vancouver for Cruisin' the Gut. Early in the day, car clubs set up in parking lots, residents get their folding chairs out and businesses erect pop-up beer stands mostly on Vancouver's Main Street.

It's a festive time. You can walk the streets and find classic cars with their hoods popped open to accommodate the inspection of admiring visitors and friends. You'll find families sitting on camp chairs in a circle on a street corner sharing sandwiches and potato salad from a cooler. And you'll find fifties music blaring from amplifiers. By evening you can hardly walk along the normally deserted sidewalks. It's party time... well into the night.