For those that live in California and are looking for a good weekend trip in the Autumn, Cruisin’ for a Cure has announced the return of their main cruising event. Set to take place on September 24, 2022, at the OC Fair & Event Center in Costa Mesa, over 3,500 classic, collector, and vintage cars are expected to make this one of the biggest events that the cruise has ever seen. As part of those 3.500, expect to see everything from exotics, classic cruisers, classic muscle cars, pre- and post-war vintage cars, famous movie cars (it is Los Angeles!), and even some new cars that are “instant classics” or destined to be modern classics.
Held during Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, the annual event was started in 1999 by Orange County resident Debbie Baker, after her husband had been diagnosed with prostate cancer. Her mission was to raise awareness about the disease, which affects one in nine men, although it can also affect women in extremely rare cases. Part of the Cruisin’ for a Cure event since its inception is the free and discreet prostate screening for men aged 40 or older at every event. To date, they’ve provided over 15,000 free screenings, and from those screenings and referrals to specialists, have helped detect over 4,000 cases of prostate cancer, early enough that it can be treated.
For the 2022 event, after a couple of years of reduced or even cancelled events, Debbie wanted this year’s one-day charity to be the biggest ever, and with more than 3,500 cars, trucks, and classic vehicles of pretty much any description expected to show up, it very well might be.
In addition to being the biggest and best to date, this year’s festivities will be presided over by Chris Jacobs of the TV shows Overhaulin’ and Long Lost Family. As the Grand Marshal of the event, expect to see him at the head of the all-day 1.5 mile cruise, before hopping out of the lead car and hosting an array of items throughout the day. There will also be automotive industry celebrities, over 200 vendors and exhibitors, and special events and competitions throughout the day.
Of course, while the reasons for the Cruise to happen is important, and the fact that a respected car guy and TV host will be the Grand Marshal, a classic cruise isn’t really a classic cruise without some classic cars!
While there are some standard cars you can expect to show, such as Ford Mustangs of all types, as well as multiple generations of Corvettes, you can also expect to find things like a VW Combi Van (known as a “hippie bus” in the 1960s!), first generation Porsche 911s, and even things such as a 1956 Cadillac Coupe deVille.
On the other side of classics, it is expected that this year’s event will bring in a lot of classic exotics, those cars that came in from Europe during the 60s and 70s. While not exactly what one would consider cruisers, they still have their place in the classic car community, and they may not even be from brands you think about often. For example, in previous shows, some of the biggest hits in terms of exotics have been pre- and post-war Alfa Romeos, and one of the hits of recent memory was a lovingly restored and mildly modernized de Tomaso Pantera, seen below from the 2019 show.
While the older classics are definitely a big draw, it also bears mentioning that modern day muscle cars, hotrods, and modified cars will also be welcomed. These can and will include everything from the latest generation C8 Corvette to the present day versions of the Camaro, Charger, Challenger, and the like. For the modified cars, it is pretty much anything and everything goes, such as the Chrysler 300 below transformed from a luxury sedan into a performance muscle car.
If you’re in the Costa Mesa area on September 24, it is definitely an event that should not be missed. The event will open at 6 AM with the start of the all-day cruise around the 1.5 mile cruise route, which will be a drop-in/drop-out cruise allowing for owners to enter or leave the cruise so they can show off their cars as rolling classics. Even better, Cruisin’ for a Cure is eminently affordable, with tickets at $17 per adult, and kids under 12 admitted for free.
The official appearance sponsor for this year’s event, and also who will be keeping all the cars looking nice and shiny, is Meguiar’s Car Care. Other primary sponsors include Woodside Credit Collector Car Financing, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Lucas Hi-Performance Oil Products, and a whole bevy of others which you can find here.