SHOWTIME: RODS AND ROSES 2019!

SHOWTIME: RODS AND ROSES 2019
Thousands of people attended the 22nd annual hot rod, custom and specialty car show in Carpinteria, CA, including our intrepid photojournalist, Jim Palam, who managed to smell the roses while capturing the essence of the car culture. Summer is the time that car shows are in full-bloom all over America. Experienced Car Guys have an uncanny ability to sniff-out the best local shows by following the residual scent of high-octane fuel – left behind when pedals hit the metal. Ahh, but in seaside Car...
More

WEST COAST KUSTOMS: CRUISIN’ NATIONALS!

WEST COAST KUSTOMS: CRUISIN’ NATIONALS!
It’s all about fins and flames at the Fairpark, blogs CGC’s Jim Palam! Let’s call it a mash-up of pinstripes, cuffed-denim, fins and flames – tucked and rolled into a colorful celebration of Kustom Kulture at the Fairpark in Santa Maria, CA. Now in its 38th year, the family-friendly 2019 WEST COAST KUSTOMS: CRUISIN’ NATIONALS! proved once again that interest in and passion for customized American cars continues to sizzle. Thousands of show-goers participated in WCKCN events, including the popul...
More

SANTA BARBARA: STREETS OF PARADISE!

SANTA BARBARA: STREETS OF PARADISE!
The 2019 State Street Nationals was all about great cars, puddles and panache, blogs CGC correspondent Jim Palam. It was raining as I motored south on Hwy 101, heading to Santa Barbara and the State Street Nationals Car Show. Promoters had promised over 300 cars this year, the 20th since California car guys starting showing their hot rods, classics, sports and exotics on this famed central artery of the city they call Paradise. I parked at the North end of the 10 block State Street strip design...
More

2019 QUAIL MOTORCYCLE GATHERING: UNWRAPPED!

2019 QUAIL MOTORCYCLE GATHERING: UNWRAPPED!
They say four wheels move the body; two wheels move the soul. Now in its 11th year, The Quail Motorcycle Gathering proved once again to be a vital force that attracts passionate motorcycle enthusiasts from around the world, to the emerald lawns of Quail Lodge & Golf Club in Carmel, CA. They come to celebrate the history, the beauty, the power and the future of all things two-wheels. To unwrap the essence of this annual gathering I arrived a day early to explore & learn as the exhibitors ...
More

SOLVANG DATSUN ROADSTER CLASSIC!

SOLVANG, CA: DATSUN ROADSTER CLASSIC!
What started out as a California couple’s honeymoon get-away in their Datsun Roadster 32 years ago has turned into a must-attend annual celebration for Datsun lovers from the U.S. plus Mexico and Canada. ‘Small Cars + Small Town = Big Fun’, says our intrepid correspondent, Jim Palam. Kerry and Jeannie Dehmel had such a good time celebrating their honeymoon in Solvang, CA that each anniversary they would return to Solvang in their Roadster, and each year more and more of their Datsun-owning frie...
More

SANTA BARBARA DRAGS: THE RACE OF GENTLEMEN (WEST)!

SANTA BARBARA DRAGS: THE RACE OF GENTLEMEN (WEST)!
Revisiting the way it was in 1949 when modified Ford Flatheads and Fours ruled the roost at the Goleta Drags – only updated to include later-model cars and OHV V8s. Our intrepid reporter and consummate carguy, Jim Palam, brings us coverage of TROG (WEST). It took some doing, but after 70 years drag racing returned to its American birthplace – Santa Barbara, CA. It was back in 1949 that the first planned and permitted drag race took place on an access road at what is now Santa Barbara Airport. T...
More

RM SOTHEBY’S & THE PETERSEN: KUSTOM KULTURE & PRECIOUS METAL!

RM SOTHEBY’S & THE PETERSEN: KUSTOM KULTURE & PRECIOUS METAL!
A trip to one of the most eclectic auctions this year – RM Sotheby’s at the Petersen Museum – and coming face-to-face with the iconic ‘Rat Fink’, relieves Jim Palam’s decades-old car guy guilt. Here’s his photo-report. It was weighing me down, this Car Guy guilt I’ve been lugging around since I moved to California in 1976. How was it that in all these years I had never visited the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles? I really didn’t have an excuse, so when I received an invitation from RM...
More

ZIPPY BRITS: CALIFORNIA HEALEY WEEK!

ZIPPY BRITS: CALIFORNIA HEALEY WEEK!
Zippy Brits beautify Solvang during California Healey Week 2018. British car and bike enthusiast Jim Palam was on the scene. It was just a green dot when I first spotted it moving rapidly towards me, flickering in and out of the Cedar shadows along Highway 246 in Solvang. As the throaty British roadster whooshed by me the driver shot me a big smile and I in-turn shot him a thumb’s-up. “Nice!” I thought, “…an early Healey 100, maybe ’57 or ’58. Man, I wish I had bought one of these beauties w...
More

WEEKEND GET-AWAY: CAR GUY STYLE!

WEEKEND GET-AWAY: CAR GUY STYLE!
You don’t need much to motivate a Car Guy. Just say the words “Car Show” and we’re off packing ice chests, gassing our rides and hitting the long pedals, blogs Jim Palam, our man on the Left Coast.When I realized that there would be two cool shows within 50 miles of each other right here on the Central Coast, I set the alarm and hit the road – for the first of my weekend shows – the VW Veteranentreffen Weekend in Solvang, CA. Truth be told, I could have walked to the VW show, just blocks away f...
More

MONTEREY CAR WEEK 2018: THE PADDOCK!

Monterey Car Week 2018: The Paddock!
The pulsating paddock is the heart of WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. Its function is to create an adrenaline-rush by pumping fossil-fuel-burning machinery into an 11-turn, 2.238-mile arterial adventure. When functioning properly, factory race teams and privateers are able to “live life” in the way we were all meant to – behind the wheels of rare, expensive, and sometimes dangerous racecars, blogs photojournalist Jim Palam.Exploring the paddock is one of my favorite things to do during Monterey...
More