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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Tri-State Cruisers wheel into town for Ice Cream Days

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Steve Hansohn, of Onawa, sets up a replica of his 1934 Ford three-window Coupe inside the car's engine Wednesday during the Tri-State Cruisers event at Bob's Drive Inn. Hundreds of cars, trucks and even a trike rolled into Le Mars to celebrate Ice Cream Days.
Growling motors broke through the din of voices.

Shining chrome drew the eyes of the curious.

Steaming taverns and Bob's dogs filled empty stomachs.

Mick Even, of Le Mars, talks about the engine of his customized black 1954 Chevy with another man Wednesday at the Tri-State Cruisers event at Bob's Drive Inn. Even has been with the Cruisers about 15 years.
That was the atmosphere at the Tri-State Cruisers event that drew an estimated 300 vehicles to Bob's Drive Inn Wednesday

All kinds from new to old, restored to original started rolling in around Bob's Wednesday afternoon before the official 5 p.m. start.

As he set up his three-window 1934 Ford Coupe to look its best in the grassy area next to the drive-in, Steve Hansohn, of Onawa, said he puts about 500 miles a year on the car.

Rocky Fey, of Le Mars, built his 1923 Ford Model T from the ground up. His street rod was parked at Bob's Drive Inn Wednesday among hundreds of other vehicles at the Tri-State Cruisers stop in honor of Ice Cream Days.
Hansohn's bright, shining, red Ford may be a classic but it has many of today's conveniences like air conditioning, remote door entry and an AM/FM CD player.

"We enjoy it," Hansohn said of he and his wife Sue. "They're just a whole lot of fun."

Those who weaved through the sea of people checking out red, green, blue -- every color of the rainbow -- vehicles seemed to agree.

Seth Kayser, 2, of Le Mars, sits in the passenger seat of a 1967 Volkswagen at the Tri-State Cruisers event at Bob's Drive Inn Wednesday. The clown-painted car is owned by Roger Wulf, of Sioux City. Wulf said he lets anyone take a sit-down in the car because that's what it's for.
Seth Kayser, 2, looked to be enjoying himself as he sat in the passenger seat of a 1967 Volkswagen painted with clowns, owned by Roger Wulf, of Sioux City.

Mom Rhonda Kayser, of Le Mars, said the family attends as many car events as possible.

"I'm kind of a freak about cars," Kayser said. "My first car was a '79 Mustang. My dad and I took the engine out and put all new seals and gaskets in and put the engine back in."

Fuzzy dice hangs from the mirror of this black car parked among hundreds of vehicles as part of the Tri-State Cruisers stop Wednesday at Bob's Drive Inn, in Le Mars.
Rocky Fey, of Le Mars, who sometimes rolls with the Tri-State Cruisers, knows all about putting cars together.

He built his 1923 Ford Model T from the ground up -- it took six months.

Pointing to parts on the orange two-seater with its open motor and brass headlights, Fey said the frame of the car was made with steel tubing and the body with fiber glass.

Now that he's finished with the Model T, Fey's working on a 1930 Model A.

He built his first car, a 1957 Chevy, at age 15.

"It's one of those things, cars have been part of my whole life," Fey said.

There weren't only car owners that drove in for the Tri-State Cruisers event.

Don and Marie Van Voorst, of Sioux Center, rode in on their red motorcycle trike with its freedom design of American flags and Christian perspective of crosses and a Bible verse.

"It's an expression of yourself," Don said. "It started as a 1972 factory built Wilmac trike. The only thing '72 that remains is the body and frame."

The American flag represents freedom for Don because he's a veteran as was his dad and Marie's dad.

"If you look close you can see a veteran saluting the flag," Don said.

Wednesday's Tri-State Cruiser event at Bob's is one of many stops throughout the season.

The car group rolls every week from April through the first week in October, and anyone can participate.

There are no membership dues, no officers, no meetings, no judging and no car requirements, according to Dar Huls, a founder of the Tri-State Cruisers.

"Our motto is 'if it's a classic to you, it's a classic to us,'" Huls said.

Tri-State Cruisers took off in 1991 back when Huls and his wife Linda, of Le Mars, owned Dar's Rock 'N Roll Palace.

"We had regular cruise nights to go along with the rock 'n roll scene," Huls said.

Also, a couple a nights a week when the palace was closed, he and Linda would jump in their 1934 Ford and cruise to other towns to eat at drive-ins.

Shortly after a Lawton couple joined the Huls on the cruises in their 1947 Ford convertible.

From those two couples' joyrides the Tri-State Cruisers was born.

"As the summer went, more people asked about going along so we made a schedule when we were going to go and that's when it started," Huls said.

Tri-State Cruisers will celebrate 20 years in 2011 and throughout that time has grown to upward of 250 people, if everyone was in one place at the same time, Huls said.

"We have had nights where close to 200 cars have shown up," he said. "Our membership is drawing from about a 90-mile radius."

Members live in places like Le Mars, Sioux City, Denison, Cherokee and Arnolds Park, Iowa, Sioux Falls and Yankton, S.D., and cities in Nebraska.

No matter where they live or what kind of "classic" vehicle they drive, those that participate in Tri-State Cruisers events have one thing in common -- they love cars.

That's why Mick Even, of Le Mars, got involved about 15 years ago.

He owns a purple 1953 Mercury and a black 1954 Chevy that was parked next to Fey's Model T Wednesday.

Both cars are customized, meaning some of their parts come from different vehicles, which is sometimes done to enhance or change the look of a car.

"I've been involved with cars pretty much all my life," Even said. "I love the old cars and I love people that have this same interest."

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Bob's is a great place, but the traffic situation was awful last night. Alot more people would have come to see the cars if there had been someplace with a little more room to stop and see them. The fairgrounds or the Old WalMart lot (unless liability interferes)would have been much nicer for everyone to drive by or park and take a look. Alot of people didn't go because it was just too congested and hard to get thru. Maybe the next one could be someplace more crowd friendly. Invite some vendors and you can still have your hotdogs. The cars that I could see driving by were fantastic. I just wish I could have seen more.

-- Posted by Samsmom on Thu, Jun 17, 2010, at 4:02 PM

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