First Shots Corvettes on WoodwardBy Rick Tavel© All Rights Reserved All photos from the author
I wanted to bring you the first photos of the outstanding Corvette events taking place in and around Detroit and Flint, Michigan, this week. Along with the world famous Woodward Dream Cruise which unofficially has already ,Corvettes on Woodward, Back to the Bricks, and the Corvette Reunion will all take place over the next four days.
|Corvettes on Woodward Two or three abreast five miles long Photo - Editor|
|Just some of the 500+ Corvettes getting ready to cruise down historic Woodward Avenue Photo - Editor|
|Larry Courtney Founder and Head of C O W|
Though officially the Woodward Dream Cruise does not start until Saturday, hot cars of all types have been cruising Woodward each evening since last Saturday to continually growing crowds of spectators. Even Tuesday night’s temperatures which plummeted into the 50’s could not keep the crowds from lining the eight lane highway to watch the cars cruise by. Wednesday morning Corvettes on Woodward kicked off with a tour of General Motors’ Heritage Center at 10AM then in the afternoon hundreds of Corvettes converged on the Bloomfield Hills Radisson Hotel to get ready for the 7 PM all-Corvette five mile parade down Woodward Avenue.
Larry Courtney, organizer of the event, stages this event each year to benefit the Open Hands Food Pantry, which relies heavily on the generosity of Corvette owners participating in the event. It has grown into a premier Corvette gathering over the last few years attracting hundreds of Corvettes from as far away as Sweden.
|Just a small section of the staging area for the Corvette parade down Woodward Photo - Editor|
|Jan & Dean autographed dash|
|Jan & Dean tribute Stingray|
At 5:30 PM I counted 480 cars in the lot and in the hour and a half left until start,the event ultimately drew more than 500 Corvettes. At 7 PM all 500+ Corvettes began the fifteen mile parade down Woodward Avenue two abreast. Because the parade was not escorted through the stop lights the line of Corvettes got separated at spots due to the heavy cruising traffic on the eight lane highway. The parade was over five miles long and literally crawled its way to the Open Hands Food Bank at 11 Mile and Woodward. Woodward was so crowded, between 15 Mile Road and 12 Mile Roads traffic virtually inched along in front of thousands of spectators lining the historic avenue that was once the epicenter of street racing in the 1950’s and 60’s. The audience lining the side of Woodward taunted the drivers to do burnouts which are illegal and subject to being issued a ticket, but several cruisers accommodated them with revving engines. The aroma of racing gas permeated the area much to the pleasure of most gearheads. All things considered Larry Courtney’s event was a good time and the food and cash donations raised for the food bank will feed thousands in upcoming months.
|Corvettes Staged and Ready to Roll Photo - Editor|
So if you can’t be there to join in the festivities at least you can enjoy the pictures. Stay tuned for updates on the Woodward Dream Cruise, the Back to the Bricks Event and the Corvette Reunion, all taking place the next few days. The Revenant will be covering them all for my readers and to borrow one of Chevrolet’s old advertising themes from 1969, “Putting You First, Keeps Us First.”
Last Saturday Larry was instrumental in helping put on the America's Corvette Club all Corvette Show and in June he organized the Corvette event at the
GM Renaissance Center in downtown Detroit.
Don't ask me what it is but it is the only non Corvette roaming around the paddock area. It drew a lot of attention being such a strange vehicle among the classic Corvettes. One guy said it was the support vehicle for his Corvette!!! Kind of looks like a carnival ride on steroids with a kick butt engine!