Doane Yawger: Some rare treats at Dos Palos car show

July 5, 2013 

Many of the vintage automobiles and trucks one encounters at a car show are predictable, mainstream vehicles. That's fine, pretty much expected, but it's the unusual, rarely seen ones that spark an enthusiast's attention.

Dos Palos held its 22nd annual Hot Summer Nights Street Car Show a couple of Saturdays ago.

While I'm told attendance and participation were down over previous years, the show still was mighty enjoyable, with more than a hundred delightful rolling gems parked on downtown city streets.

How often does one see a 1956 Hudson Hornet Custom four-door sedan?

Not too often, I'd say, but the big cruiser was a delight to view, painted in an eye-catching coral and gray combination.

The seats folded down to make a mini-motel, so to speak, for economy-conscious families wanting to save a few bucks on their cross-country trips.

Hudson got rolled up in the American Motors family of vehicles in the mid-1950s through a series of mergers but produced some remarkable vehicles during that time.

Another rarely seen vehicle was a Crosley station wagon, an early 1950s compact that had been mildly street-rodded.

Dos Palos seems to be the place where cars from the pro street era still feel at home. A 1970 Ford Pinto, which originally had barely enough power to get out of its own way, had bright red paint, flames and a monster motor.

Lincoln Continental MKII coupes from 1956 are relatively rare these days, but Dos Palos had two of them, one fresh from a major restoration and the other still presentable but not quite as dazzling.

Unusual has to be the word for a 1951 Chevrolet pickup truck featuring wooden side panels on its doors like a woodie station wagon.

I've never seen one like that but the treatment works.

More common but still compelling sights included a 1957 Ford four-door station wagon and a 1929 Model A Ford sport coupe. Also a bit rare was a red-and-black 1928 Ford roadster pickup.

A 1964 Buick Riviera hardtop added to the variety factor.

No car show would be complete without several 1956 Ford F-100 pickup trucks, late 1960s and early 1970s Chevrolet Camaros, early 1970s Chevy Chevelles and a 1970 Chevy Nova to check out.

It's good to see so much variety at a car show. I'd be happy looking at a row of 1950 Ford coupes but it's good to mix things up a bit.

Reporter Doane Yawger can be reached at (209) 385-2407 or

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