Cool cars and the people that adore them gather for the Syracuse Nationals



Those of us of a certain age remember the 1973 movie “American Graffiti.”

That’s the one in which red-haired and freckled Ron Howard and friends — Richard Dreyfuss, Harrison Ford and Cindy Williams among them — came to terms with becoming an adult in a time where cruising the boulevard and racing in the streets was a part of life.

Cool cars were the co-stars.

Every summer, Syracuse Nationals event takes over the New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse for a weekend. In fact, the crowd that visits spreads through the parking lots and roads of Onondaga County.

Cool cars are the stars.

My dear wife Karen and I spotted a bunch parked outside one of our favorite eateries last night. Usually the Ruby Tuesday off Carrier Circle is a good spot to avoid the crush of a mall or busy thoroughfare. This time, it was full of folks wearing shirts that proclaim their devotion for vintage automobiles. A bunch of them are calling the cluster of hotels off the circle home for the weekend.

Last night, when it became cool enough to open our windows to the mid-July air, I heard a familiar background drone. In Eastwood, we were close enough to hear the sounds of car people stretching out the engines.

It reminded me of “American Graffiti,” of a time when a car was something far more than the vehicle that got you to and fro.

To a whole bunch of people in Syracuse this weekend, that’s still a premise to celebrate.

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