Classic cars sizzle at Clayton’s summer shows

By Carina Romano on July 3, 2017

Car show for websiteClayton residents took a drive down Memory Lane this June with the commencement of the third annual Clayton Classic Car Show on Main Street.

Classic cars from the 1940s to the 1970s stood in brilliantly colored rows, dazzling passersby as they shone in the late evening sun. Every car was in pristine condition, so it was easy to see the owners had taken great care.

The Clayton Classic Car Show is a free summertime event, and classic car owners from across Contra Costa County are invited to display their cars. The event occurs 6-8 p.m. every other Wednesday through Sept. 6. Don’t miss the next trip into the past on Wednesday, July 12.

Mayor Jim Diaz, who organizes the show, says that 20 to 25 vehicles are typically on display. A Local DJ, Don Vogel, plays music from these decades, filling the street with cheer and nostalgia.
Until three years ago, the owners of Skipolini’s Pizza produced the classic car show. When the restaurant could no longer put on the show because of a lack of space, Diaz agreed to take over and the City Council approved the new venue in the public parking lot next to the Clayton Museum.

Dennis, a classic car owner who didn’t want his last name used, entered the first show on June 14 with his light blue 1958 Chevrolet Corvette. Dennis has presented it in other shows, but this was his first year participating in the Clayton Classic Car Show.

The Corvette used to be a race car and had quite a rough history before he bought it 35 years ago. “I got it in pieces,” Dennis recalls. “The car was a mess. It was a total disaster.”

Looking at the car today, you would be hard-pressed to find any evidence that it hadn’t always been in perfect condition.

Car shows bring people with the same interests together, and that’s what Dennis enjoys. He also appreciates talking with people who aren’t familiar with classic cars but are interested in learning about his work. “You make people happy. It’s fun,” he says.

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