And once a car is fixed, it has to be operable; it has to run, said the Pomona resident Saturday while gazing at “El Rey,” his shining 1963 Chevy Impala with a Corvette engine that attracted the attention of every single person who walked by it.
One of those who stayed looking at “El Rey” was Brawley resident George Hernandez.
“It’s a beautiful car. I wish I had it,” Hernandez said jokingly and added he liked everything in “El Rey” from the dashboard to the speakers and the art.
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“El Rey” was just one of some 300 rides shown during the La Gente del Valle Imperial 20th annual Super Show held at the fairgrounds.
“This is one of the biggest shows in years,” said Blas Gutierrez, president of the La Gente del Valle Imperial Car Club adding that for car enthusiasts, “this is a great show but is also for anybody to enjoy.”
Dubs, bombs, lowriders, hot rods, motorcycles and even bicycles from as far as Lancaster, Sacramento and Phoenix were brought to compete in the different categories and win as much as $1,000.
A hydraulics competition, music from Cartel Norteño and Maribel Puentes were also part of the program. In addition, Danny De La Paz, known for his role as Puppet in the movie “American Me,” also made a special appearance to meet fans.
This year the car show was bigger and better, said Gutierrez while noting the event, just like fixing cars, is a great opportunity for family to bond.
And family bonding was exactly what El Centro resident Sam Ocampo and his 12-year-old son Joshua were doing in what Sam Ocampo called a “father-and-son moment.”
Ocampo considers fixing cars a positive hobby that allows him to watch his son learn various skills like handling a wrench.
“Time flies” in those moments, said Ocampo, who just got a Camaro he and his son are set to fix.
But not everybody at the event was interested in fixing cars, some like Dago Duran from Corona, were interested in bicycles.
“It’s an expensive hobby, but it’s my passion. I don’t think about anything else,” said Duran while noting his hobby kept him away from bad things like “gangs, drugs and other stuff.”
Like Ocampo and Duran, Hernandez also described fixing cars as a positive hobby.
However, unlike many others at the event, for Hernandez the best part of fixing a car isn’t necessarily having a family moment or staying away from bad influences.
The best thing is cruising, Hernandez said, “playing some music (and) just enjoying the ride, that’s what it is all about.”
Staff Writer Alejandro Davila can be reached at 760-337-3445 or firstname.lastname@example.org