Classic car enthusiasts flocked to Main Street and Pier Plaza in Huntington Beach on Saturday for the return of the Huntington Beachcruisers car show.
The 20th annual auto show has returned after two consecutive years of cancellations due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It’s hard to put into words,” Chris Young, an event organizer, said of the long-awaited comeback. “It’s been two long years. This event, which was the 20th anniversary event, was canceled a week before the actual show date in 2020. We were canceled on Friday the 13th, and the event took place on Next Saturday, the 21st, so to be that close, it was a bit difficult to have to call everyone up and say, ‘Hey guys, we can’t do it.’ It was really good to be back, after almost two years to the day.
Huntington Beach is known as Surf City, of course, and the sight of so many classic cars in one place may have brought some attendees back to simpler times of browsing their radios while driving along the southern California coast.
Attendees had plenty of time to stock up on nostalgia, peek under the hood and snap photos of their favorite cars, as the show opened to the public at 8 a.m. and ran until at 2:30 p.m.
Young said the Huntington Beachcruisers show was originally developed by the late Tom Long of Fallbrook with the idea of allowing beach-related vehicles to be shown that weren’t timbers. About 135 cars took part in the show this year, with their manufacturing dates ranging from the years 1921 to 1998, Young added.
“In 2000 he decided to do what’s called Beachcruisers, which was any vehicle – and by then it was until 1972,” Young said of Long’s vision. . “I moved it in 1980, just to help [some] more cars are coming, but originally it was 1972, all the cars that would have raced Huntington Beach at that time.
“It was the whole idea of the show was to allow non-woodies who were still beach cruisers to take part in a show.”
Young added that Long had always hoped the show would last 20 years. Now that the benchmark has been reached, he was asked if there are any plans to continue with the event.
“I’m going to have a good shot,” Young said. “We’re going to have to sit down and see what the costs are involved, what we need. I know the city wants him back. I have a lot of people saying, “Hey, this show kicks off the spring for me,” and things like that, so I’m going to do my best to bring it back next year. It just depends on the logistics right now.