Valve Burners’ car club show draws stellar following

09/12/2013 8:29 PM

09/13/2013 1:28 AM

You can’t beat a Sunday car show in a park with a lot of shade trees. I’m very thankful there still are opportunities to see some fine vintage tin locally without having to travel great distances.

The Valve Burners’ car club show Sunday at Henderson Park in Snelling attracted more than 150 old cars and trucks. It’s hard to keep events running for several decades, but the club has managed to sustain a quality event. This show has been running for 24 years and I sure hope it continues for years to come.

Several cars stand out among the sea of rolling treasures.

My favorite would have to be a light-green and white 1958 Edsel two-door hardtop, essentially stock with a few mild custom touches. I’ve seen the Edsel around town for maybe 10 years and it’s certainly a winner.

The car has chrome reversed rims instead of the stock wheelcovers, along with spotlights and “lakes pipes” running along the side. None of the distinctive Edsel features such as the horse-collar grille or batlike taillights have been changed.

Another fave would have to be an early 1950s Chevrolet pickup painted in a brilliant copper-bronze color. It was essentially stock and looking great.

What else was out at Snelling?

There were a number of mid-1950s Chevrolet station wagons on the grassy area. Back when they were new, station wagons weren’t cool – but they sure are now. They look stylish and certainly have utility on their side.

The same holds true for four-door sedans. While they may be a little less sought-after than convertibles or two-door hardtops and sedans, the four-doors are very desirable and seem to be coming out of the woodwork of late.

In particular I was drawn to a black 1958 Ford four-door hardtop. It had a drive-in carhop tray on the driver’s window, but otherwise appeared pretty much in factory condition. Nearby was a 1960 Chevrolet “more-door,” which earns considerable style points as well.

While talking about four-door sedans, I also noticed a jet-black 1965 Lincoln Continental. It had modern tires and rims but looked stock. That has to be a fun cruiser that would capture lots of looks wherever it goes.

Another favorite was a powder-blue and white 1952 Chevrolet hardtop. It was a striking car, with a little bit of trim removed and a sparkling-clean white interior.

Out in the middle of the field was a car I have admired for a year or more. It’s a 1948 Plymouth two-door coupe painted in a semigloss orange, with whitewall tires and 1959 Dodge Lancer hubcaps. The old Mayflower coupe looks to be pretty much complete except for door locks.

You couldn’t miss a 1960 Cadillac two-door hardtop with a severe top chop and a high-performance motor. It was extreme and an attention-getter for sure.

The Valve Burners’ car show is a charity event with lots to recommend it. If you missed this year’s show, put it on your calendar of must-do 2014 events.

Sun-Star staff writer Doane Yawger can be reached at (209) 385-2407 or

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