Pastor Ken Hasekamp of the Adventure Christian Church of Patterson directed the family-friendly event for his second year in a row, and claims that the car show will become an annual celebration for Patterson.
“We’ve welcomed 16 new entries and we hope to have more in the future,” said Hasekamp. “We are small enough to close down the Plaza Circle and let everyone take a lap around it to hear how the cars run. When we get bigger, we may not be able to do that anymore, so we’re enjoying the time we have now.”
The car show is also an opportunity to give back to local organizations. The $25 to $35 entry fee was to be utilized to profit the Patterson Teen Center and Helping Others Sleep Tonight (H.O.S.T.).
“We didn’t make enough this time to cover the expenses this time, but we are hoping to in the future. At least we can help get the word out about what this means for the community,” said Hasekamp. “Our other goal is to draw out these fun cars our neighbors have,” he said.
Contestants parked their cars and bikes around the Plaza Circle, drawing interested onlookers to their unique rides.
“This is a good thing for our community,” said Patterson resident Robert Fernandez. “You get some ideas for your own car and get to see everyone’s handiwork.”
The show incorporated all different models and styles of transportation, and even incorporated hand built items.
“Everyone’s got their own style,” said Hayward resident Jesse Martinez as he eyed a 1927 Ford Turtleback entry from San Leandro. “They are all unique, and that keeps us interested.”
One of the most talked about entries was a custom built clone of a U.S. Army jeep from a 1978 DJ5 postal jeep. Local resident and welder Zeke Saldana III, along with brothers Abraham and Isaac, worked on their jeep for 6 to 8 months earlier this year.
“We made it look like a M38A1,” said Zeke Saldana III. “Abraham saw it in a back lot in a truck yard, so we bought it. We wanted an army tribute to the soldiers out there, so we made this.”
Nearly 500 onlookers and participants continued to gawk at the man-made marvel, but also found themselves interested in Saldana’s bike, which is considered a hard tail, no suspension low rider.
It was painted an army green, like the jeep, with a few white stars as an army symbol.
“I built it myself,” said Saldana, who utilized parts from eBay to make his own model. He began the venture in 2005, but didn’t finish the project until 2010. Saldana, as well as his family, took pride in the bike and were happy to see others who appreciate their work.
“We enter in many car shows,” said Saldana. “Probably 5 or 6 times a year. We like to get out and see what everyone has to offer, and they can see us too.”
What is a car show without a little competition? Best in Show went to Hayward resident Terri Estrada for her “tricked out” 2001 Chrysler PT Cruiser.
“This thing is just… wow!” said Hasekamp of the vehicle. “There is hardly anything part of the car that is original. Even the engine has cosmetic work.”
Estrada’s winning entry featured a custom cranberry pearl paint job, complete with stardust for a shimmering effect on the outside of the car. The motor’s manifold cover is painted blue and candy magenta.
One of the most startling features is a pink shifter that she installed herself. The top of the shifter looks like a crystal, which lights up to 5 different colors at night. The steering wheel and seats were custom, as well as the jeweled knobs for the ventilation system.
The stereo system, located in the car’s trunk, featured two amplifiers that light up in a purple glow, complete with bubbles.
“It’s a girl’s car,” she said simply.
Estrada, who runs a car club east of the Bay area, was eager to return to Patterson again for this specific event.
“I entered the show last year because I have friends who live out here,” said Estrada. “I had an amazing time and I knew I wanted to do this again.”
Contact Brooke Borba at 892-6187, ext. 24, or firstname.lastname@example.org