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Champaign Cruisers 4th of July Car Show

I attended my first Champaign Cruisers Firecracker Car, Truck and Bike show on Tuesday.   This is the 20th year the Champaign Cruisers car club has sponsored a car show on the 4th of July.

The show is held in the grass and wooded areas surrounding the Skelley Lumber Company in Urbana, Ohio.

Club members helped to park cars as they entered the show area and directed traffic after the show was over.  The club even went as far as to mark off parking areas with white spray paint to ensure adequate space for foot and golf cart traffic between car rows.  You could tell the club has been doing this for a few years.


The $10 cost of registration was collected as vehicles entered the show area. A card was handed out to confirm registration and allow vehicle owners to complete the registration process after parking their vehicle. This was the only way to make sure all the cars in the show area were registered.

Each registered vehicle received a blue and white raffle ticket. The white ticket was for a chance to win door prizes or gas cards (you couldn't purchase additional door prize tickets). The blue ticket was for a chance to win a dollar amount equal to the final number of registered vehicles. In addition to door prizes and gas cards, there was a 50/50 raffle to win half the pot of money or a set of tool drawers worth $700.  I would love to know how the lucky winner of the tool drawers got the unit home.

The show had plenty of food vendors offering all sorts of culinary choices to match your mood.  Music was provided by W. Productions.

Speaking of registration, this year the show saw a grand total of 640 registered vehicles from all over central and western Ohio, and even Indiana.  Some cars traveled as far as 100 miles to attend the show.


A large show like this usually attracts a lot of great cars and trucks.  For me, It was exciting to see some different vehicles for a change.  Here's a sampling of some of the great cars and trucks that attended the show.


The large number also meant there were some very unusual and unique vehicles.

Like this "Thing" of Gerald and Diane Blail of Urbana.

Or this 1970 Opel "Rat Rod"How about a lowered school bus rat rod.
I would categorize the 1977 Ford E-150 "Dino" van of Bryan Counts of Spencerville, Ohio as unique.

Another front engine VW Bettle.

It's uncommon to see a Ford Edsel these days let alone at a car show. 

This custom painted PT Cruiser of Bruce Olvis from Fairborn, Ohio had a whopper of a stereo system in the back.


The Brutus Buckeye hood liner on this 2002 Chevy Corvette owned by Bill and Nina Jones of Springfield, Ohio was an attention grabber, especially for Ohio State fans.

Mustang owners will go to any length to get their Cobras noticed.

The air brushed "Big Chief" on the radiator cover of this 1958 Pontiac Cheiftan of Bob Everett was pretty cool.

If there was an award for "Most Unusual",  It would go to this boat converted to a car.  It showed up late to the show and I wasn't able to find out who owned it, but it sure drew a crowd of spectators.


The club presented 73 "Favorite" awards and a "Best of Show".  Each winner, in addition to receiving a two foot trophy, was also presented a $25  gas card provided by one of the show's sponsors.  Motorcycles received five of the 73 awards.

Here are few of the "Favorite" winners.

Jerry Ramey of Richmond, Indiana and his 1937 Ford Coupe.

The 1968 Pontiac Firebird of Rod Merrick from Urbana, Ohio.

John and Judy Rust of Muncy, Indiana and their modified 1961 Nash Metropolitan.

This 1968 Pontiac GTO of Doug Stansbery from Upper Sandusky, Ohio.

Our good friend Russ Annis of Columbus and his 1967 Chevelle SS.


The Champaign Cruiser's pick for "Best of Show" went to this 1955 Chevrolet 210 of Brian Baker from Bellefontaine, Ohio.  An absolutely stunning vehicle!  The engine bay is one of a kind. The car got tons of attention from show goers.

My hat goes off to the Champaign Cruiser's and their many sponsors for putting on a well-organized and successful show.  I see why this show attracts so many cars from around Ohio and Indiana each year.  It certainly will be at the top of my list for next year's 4th of July.

My next big report will be from the Goodguys PPG Nationals.  Look for a big write-up this weekend.  Until then,  I hope to see everyone out there cruising.

3 thoughts on “Champaign Cruisers 4th of July Car Show

  1. Russ Annis


    Great job as usual.

    This show is one of the top I have attended in the past several years. Show was well organized many great door prizes and very generous with cash gifts. With the 75 total trophies presented you received a gas card worth $20 to $25. For those of you that haven't attended this show I would highly recommend you considering it next year.

    Russ Annis

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