1999 Woodward Dream Cruise, Part ll

August 22, 1999
Rub-a-dub-dub, two men (and a woman) in a tub. This custom trailer may be the ultimate timesaver, a way to combine your daily ablutions with your morning commute! The community bathtub on wheels (with a working showerhead) was just one of the more, um, unusual modes of transportation to show up for this year’s Dream Cruise. And for those who want to shave some time off those weekly trips to the grocery, there’s this high-performance shopping cart, complete with a 5-horsepower engine.

motorized shopping cart

motorized shopping cart

1954 Chevy Sedan

1954 Chevy Sedan

Dragon Slayer. Bill Guillou has an ingenious way of warning tailgaters to keep their distance. With a flick of a switch, his customized ’54 Chevy Sedan Delivery Truck belches flame from its dual, dragon-headed exhaust pipes. This rare vehicle is, well, a little bit ostentatious. There’s the custom dragon motif painted on the rear door, for one thing, along with nine strobe lights and full under-body black lights. Oh, and don’t forget the high-power speaker system, says Guillou, mounted inside the wheel wells.
poodle skirts

poodle skirts

Walking the dog. When Cheryl Rose and Renee Weiss went cruising, back in the Sixties, they’d tell their parents they were going out to the library. But the real challenge, Cheryl recalls, was keeping her boyfriends in order. "You’d be riding with one, and then have to duck down if you saw another." She finally stopped cruising when she was 20 because "we had to get a life." Maybe so, but she can still fit into that poodle skirt.
1971 el Camino

1971 el Camino

Muscle car, muscle man. It’s too bad Ken Ruth didn’t have this ’71 El Camino back in the old days. There wouldn’t have been many cars that could have kept up. Under the hood, there’s a 502 cubic-inch crate motor that’s been "worked on," Ken says with a note of mystery. With the tank of nitrous bolted into the bed, the El Camino can put out a peak 860 horsepower. No wonder the car was briefly impounded the night before the Dream Cruise.
police

police

But officer…! An estimated one million people turned out to watch the 1999 Dream Cruise. But it seemed like there were almost as many police on hand. And they made sure their presence was felt, handing out hundreds of tickets to anyone they could catch — including this unfortunate soul — laying down a patch of rubber.
Hemi dodge

Hemi dodge

Sitting on the sidelines. With all those men in blue, plenty of people found that it was safest sitting on the sidelines. "I’m still 17," insisted Jim Hofes, who drives up every year from Akron, Ohio. He got his first taste of cruising at that tender age — 34 years ago — in a friend’s Hemi-powered Dodge. Sitting and watching is just fine, said Hofes, noting "You get to see the cars, smell ‘em and see ‘em move."
1957 Chevy Bel Air

1957 Chevy Bel Air

Dream car for a dream cruise. As a teenager, Bob Norton used to cruise Woodward in a ’57 Chevy Bel Air. Then he got married and sold it for some much-needed cash. He never forgot that first car…much to the frustration of his family. "They got tired of hearing me whine," he says, with a mischievous grin. So, finally, a couple years ago, Norton’s wife and now-successful son chipped in to help buy him a mint-condition turquoise Bel Air. "It lets me live my dream," he says with a smile.
1955 Studebaker President Speedster

1955 Studebaker President Speedster

One man’s classic is another man’s junker. This 1955 Studebaker President Speedster, owned by Ed and Carol Schoener, seems to be an eerie harbinger of all those avocado and harvest-gold kitchen appliances from the 1970s.
Detroit Rock City! This Kiss-influenced piece of rolling art shows some inbreeding
Detroit Rock City van

Detroit Rock City van

from the Mad Max movies, with its huge knobby tires and a cackling clown-faced hood ornament. Though we couldn't locate the owners, we're pretty sure they're still on Woodward somewhere, trying to score Alice Cooper tickets.
LeMans convertible prototype

LeMans convertible prototype

Cars Detroit never built. This LeMans convertible was a one-off prototype produced for the 1953 Motorama, a showcase of GM design and engineering. It was one of four produced, recalls retired General Motors designer Larry Faloon. "All four of them ended up with private owners. This one came back to us from a former GM executive's family who allowed us to purchase it at a very reasonable cost considering its value, and now it's again part of GM's collection."
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