Well, here I am again. I am back from "Lost Memorial Day Weekend", and I have to say I had a blast! I met up with friends I haven't seen since last summer, saw vans I had never seen in person, and met new friends.
The trip, which took about 10 hours each way with stops, went down without a hitch. We took the 98 Dodge. (I have 2 full size vans, a 77 which is customized by me, and a 98 Conversion) Seeing as my wife only has 8 weeks left until she has the baby, we took the more comfortable one. This is how the weekend looked.
On Saturday, the show and shine took place in the afternoon. It was blazing hot out, and I realized after I got home that 95% of my pics from the show were just of the interiors. If it had been a little cooler I probably would have stuck around and got more pictures of the exteriors. Here are some of my favorites form the show.
This Chevy was named 'Junk' of all things!
One van I have always wanted to see is the one in the previous 3 pictures. It's a heavily customized 78 Dodge named "Machina" it is a multiple show winner, and has under gone many changes over the years. This is how it currently appears.
Most people prefer short wheel base vans, but to me the longer the better, and the more axles the better too! I love tandems. One of my favorites belongs to my friend Guy. He is an amazing artist and has done all the work on the outside of his van. He also built the inside too, and it is definitely built for comfort. One of the projects he is working on is a tire cover for my 77. It is going to be a rendering of one of my paintings, and I can't wait to see it!! For more of his work click here.
Another 'new' favorite of mine is called "Fog Cutter", and belongs to my friend 'Snotty'. Last time I saw his van it was just plywood on the interior. In the span of less than a year he has transformed the inside of his van to a lighthouse and beach. It features glass bricks, copper paneling, and brickwork. Yes this adds a good deal of weight, but his van is a 4x4 converted by Pathfinder, and it can handle it. Snotty also makes a damn good blender drink, and verily I enjoyed my share this weekend. :)
I love the paint on this Chevy owned by Mike Rat.
Now this van, which took best of show has a story. It is called "The French Connection" and was built by a vanner who was very well liked, but died tragically in a motorcycle accident. I never had the pleasure of meeting him, as it was 7 years ago now that this occured. His son just turned old enough to inherit the van, and this was the first time it has been out of storage in 7 years. Getting the van ready was a group effort between the club members and the son, and it's presence there was a very emotional experience for many who saw it, and knew the story surrounding it.
One thing about vanners that I have to explain is this: it is one big family. When a tragedy occurs it is felt by all, as we tend to be pretty close. Some vanners have known eachother for over 30 years, some are related by blood, and there are second and third generation vanners in the fold. It's difficult to really relay what goes on at a truck-in, because this is the part most people don't really understand. It's more than a van show, it's more than just camping, it's spending time with people that in some cases are closer than family.
I really look forward to the next truck-in I can make, but unfortunately this year it isn't going to be until Oct. So until then I will have to settle for reports form others and their pictures.
Oh. Sorry, no light show pics. I didn't make it as I was too busy at the business end of the blender. ;)