Thursday, August 26, 2010

Cruisers not welcome in Royal Oak? Well, whether you agree or not with Ed, let us know by leaving a comment below. Oh, and be sure to see what people already had to say!

Woodward Dream Cruisers,
You are not welcome in Royal Oak.
Seems that since the very first Woodward Dream Cruise, Royal Oak has made it clear that they do not like the Dream Cruise event.
The years of whining about the cost of overtime for the army of police, and all those annoying out-of- towners spending money in their town is just too much to handle. This past weekend the Royal Oak motorcycle force was up to the assignment of making sure anyone possibly enjoying the worlds largest car event were under scrutiny. Any infraction of the pages of obscure city laws would be dealt with to the fullest measure.

Last year it was the hundreds of onlookers sitting in lawn chairs with their friends and family that brought down the heavy hand of the Royal Oak cops.
Rousted from their chairs and sent away or be arrested were the orders of the evening along Woodward. South of the 14 mile Royal Oak border, you are a possible violator of the generally peaceful Royal Oak decorum. North of Royal Oak's border, you were an unmolested taxpayer enjoying a summer evening watching cars go by.
Not just satisfied with the “move-a-long” orders more money could be generated for the force with the issuing of traffic tickets for the slightest
infractions. This weekend the Royal Oak cops were like swarms of mosquitoes buzzing around looking to suck some money out of any hapless victims. Two at a time, the mounted officers of the elite motorcycle force made their authority well known.
The jack-booted cycle cops set the rules for a car event. No need to ask questions just had over your papers. One officer writes the ticket while his backup stands at the rear of your car's passenger side, hand at the ready to draw his Glock.
Save your time trying to explain your case to the judge. It is a big fine or at least 20 days in jail. Prices seem to start at $150.00.
Expect you will also receive a second fine from our soon to be gone Canadian Governor.
South of Royal Oak no noticeable police force, North of Royal Oak no police around. Also, no trouble in those towns.
My advice is to sign up for the Pontiac location, and spend your time and money in a city that has the welcome sign out.
Let's be clear; while the Pontiac Police are friendly they will not ignore dangerous activity. As I have observed in the past, if you get a ticket in Pontiac you had it coming.
Signup for Pontiac, and have a safe and reserved place to park your Dream Cruiser. Take a cruise down Woodward and turn around before Royal Oak.

Here are some of the comments Ed has already received; please leave your thoughts!

Blogger Jim of L-Town said...
   Ed has it soo right. Royal Oak is out-of-control and its cops are a disgrace to law enforcement. I don't usually support boycotts, but it would serve Royal Oak right if car show enthusiasts completely avoided Royal Oak and its businesses until they join us in this century.

Blogger Susan said...
    As a police retiree, I'm disappointed to hear that the police officers in Royal Oak are being told to enforce infractions that don't mean doodley squat! This cruise might just be considered a parade, which does qualify for the use of those antique license plates, that would be my defense, when I drive "Big Red" in the cruise in 2013. Why in the heck would any town laying off police officers alienate public support and hurt local business?
Anonymous Anonymous said...
    Thanks Ed for haveing the Balls to stand up and say what everyone else wants to, we have a large group of car people that Do NOT and well not go or shop in Royal Oak anymore, and we keep telling more people all the time. hope on day the get the message. dought it...its all about the MONEY.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
    We had an upsetting time when a Royal Oak policeman approached us, with our autistic son, who loves the Woodward Cruise and brings his "die cast" cars and puts them on the trunk of our car. He had about 6 of his little cars sitting on the trunk and the officer told him to put them away! Our son was crushed, he didn't understand. We didn't argue, but we were outraged that an officer would do such a thing to a sweet special needs young man. It was an awful thing to have happened and had a huge impact on our special son (he still remembers it and gets upset), and it was all for nothing. The officers in Royal Oak are harsh and disrespect everyone, including SPECIAL NEEDS PEOPLE, and that is just wrong. Thank you for writing this article and bringing it to everyone's attention. The Chief of Police needs to do something to change this.
    Our son was the poster child for Easter Seals of SE Michigan and served as the Child Ambassador from 1998-2000, and he didn't deserve to get treated like this by police officers.

Terrain crossover good news for GM

Let’s all hope that the bad news for General Motors has passed.

One of the possible small pieces of good news could be the all new GMC Terrain SUV. It joins the popular segment of “crossover” SUV models that provide the truck-like capabilities, and also offers a more car-like ride. The Terrian, and its sibling Chevy Equinox, will fill in for the former Envoy SUV that is now history.

There are three equipment levels and two engine choices; a base SE with front-wheel drive and a 2.4 liter direct-injection 4-cylinder engine at 182 horsepower. Optional is the 3-liter V-6 also with the much advanced direct-injection and delivering 264 horsepower. All start with front-wheel drive. An all-wheel drive is optional. The top of the Terrain lineup is the SLT-2. The only transmission is a new 6-speed automatic. Under the hood the engine sits sideways, which is typical of front-wheel drive vehicles.

The list of added cost optional accessories is short on the SLT-2, but gets longer the base model SL. All come with a rearview camera that is displayed in the left side of the rearview mirror. It is a much appreciated feature considering the lack of visibility backing up. I like the idea of also being able to see just a little of the rear bumper in the camera’s view. You see exactly how close you are to what’s back there.

I tested the SLT-1 with the standard 2.4 liter 4-cylinder engine and standard front-wheel drive. Added to the base price of $27,450 is the power sunroof at $795 and power programmable lift gate at $495, which are both useful. The cargo management package at $245 seems like a rip-off which gives the buyer a cargo cover, net and roof crossbars. It seems like an SUV should come with these. The Carbon Black Metallic paint was close to perfect but added another $195 to the final cost of $29,925, including the $745 delivery charge. But coming from the GM plant in Ingersoll, Canada, is a long trip. I’m old enough to remember accepting delivery of my new Pontiac right from the factory backdoor and no charge. Anyway, those days are long gone, as well as Pontiac.

If you like truck styling, the Terrain will give you a little tickle with its massive grille and huge wheel openings. A tall appearing and stand-up profile make the Terrian look bigger than it is. The 18-inch wheels don’t come close to filling the squared fender wheel openings, and that looks like too much. Usually, just the dirty wheels are showing most of the time.

Fog lamps were part of the standard equipment on the tested SLT-1. The remote start feature will be welcomed this winter if you park outside. The most enjoyed option on the test SLT-1 was the power opening lift gate. With a touch of the remote button the heavy cargo gate will yawn open and offer up the generous space for all of your vacation junk. There is a 12-volt outlet back there, too, if needed.

In the 4-cylinder Terrain, a large sub-woofer speaker is in one of the side panels that boosts up the music base, but also emits a frequency that dampens the 4-cylinder noise.

If ever a very tall person were to actually ride in the second-row split-bench seat they could slide the seat back a few inches for extra leg room. I can’t remember the last time I saw an adult in the back of one of their SUVs. Just kids and an optional DVD entertainment package is available if that’s what’s needed to keep them less annoying on long trips. I guess coloring books or reading or talking about the sights are not fashionable these days.

In the driver’s bucket seat there is little to complain about, starting with the attractive instrument cluster. An information digital message window is located in the middle of the analog tachometer and speedometer that provides vehicle condition readouts, including tire pressure and oil life. Trip and fuel consumption are also there. 

The factory says I should get 32 mpg on the highway, but the best I could do was around 25 to 27 mpg. I must confess that I was not going anywhere near the speed limit on a four-hour drive.

The stereo and climate controls are easy to use and a large digital display was easy to check at a glance.

The 2.3 liter 4-cylinder and six-speed tranny were adequate for most demands, but passing on a steep hill put all of the available 183 horses to work, and they were not happy some of the time. The STL will only tow up to 1,500 pounds and the V-6 at 3,500 pounds.

The ride quality was very good and the noise level was very low even on a very windy day.

Cruising dates

Sept 10-12
Frankenmuth Autofest
Biggest and best car show in Michigan.
Look for Cruisn'News

Sept 10-12
31st Annual NSRA
Street Rod Nationals North
Kalamazoo County Fairgrounds

Sept 11
Jaguar Affiliates of Mich
43-rd Annual Concours d'Elegance
Ypsilanti, Mi 10-4

Sept 18
USMA Charity Car Show
Golling Pontiac AMC
Lake Orion, Mi 10-4

Sept 19
13th Annual Car Show/Swap
Sons of American Legion
Clarkston, Mi 9-4

Sept 25
6th Annual Inn at Cass Lake
Car & Bike Show
Waterford, Mi 11-4

Sept 25
Nostalgia Drags Milan Dragway
Milan, Mi

Sept 25
Hadley's 12th Annual Classic Car Show
Hadley, Mi 9-3

Sept 25-26
Michigan Antique & Collectible Festival
Midland County Fairgrounds
Midland, Mi 8-6

Sept 26
24th Annual Scholz Autofest
Big Show and bigger trophies
Capac, Mi 8-11

Sept 26
2nd Annual Traditional Hot Rods,
Customs and Pre-1965 Motorcycle Show
Gilmore Car Museum
Hickory Corners, Mi 9-6

Oct 2
Car Tunes Classic Car Show
Cars must be 1985/older
Community Park
Northville, Mi Noon-5:30

Oct 6
Cruise to Battle Alley Halloween Cruise
Downtown Holly
Holly, Mi 5:30-8

Oct 9
Tuscola County Pumpkin Festival Car Show
Features Vintage Dragsters in memory of
Larry Payne, Sr.
Dragsters will cruise thru town at 10 am
Caro, Mi 7-10

Oct 10
Pecker Heads Presents 14th Annual Swap Meet
Hot Rods, Race Cars & Motorcycles
Davisburg, Mi 9-2

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Watch the Dream Cruise live and later

By Stephen Frye
If you can't make it to the Woodward Dream Cruise this week, you can catch all the fun online at, where we will have livestream video from the fun.
You can catch the cruise with both live and recorded video, so if you're one of the thousands who sets up on the sidewalk to watch, you can review the classic cruisers later on at your convenience.
We will have livestreamed video on both Friday and Saturday.
On Friday, we will start with our live show at 11 a.m. with the parade of cars entering The Oakland Press Cruizin' Car Show in Pontiac. We will spend three hours showcasing the cars and their owners, talking to those who restore and love the old cars.
Later, at 3 p.m., we will set up a camera to catch the cars as they travel Woodward Avenue, so take a peak at the action before you head down.
On Saturday, we will start at 10 a.m. on the road, cruising the corridor ourselves with our camera and auto writer Joseph Szczesny. If you're on the road, look for us and wave a hello.
At noon, we'll cut to downtown Royal Oak to see what's happening there.
And at 3 p.m., we will continue our live coverage from Pontiac and The Oakland Press Cruizin' Car Show as we showcase the prize winners and talk to the victorious car shows.
Besides the live coverage, look also for our recorded video feature stories, which can be found on our site or on the CruisinMI video channel on our video page.
Check us out throughout the weekend, and come back on Monday for a look back at all the fun.

Rockin' Rods 'n Rochester

It was hot and cool at the Rockin’ Rods ‘n  Rochester this Sunday. A little smaller turnout than in the past, but still plenty of outstanding show cars and trucks.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Woodward Dream Cruise founder dies at age 69

By Carol Hopkins
Jean Chamberlain remembers getting a call from plumber Nelson House back in 1995 about fundraising money for soccer fields for his town of Ferndale.
“He came up the idea of doing a cruise around Ferndale,” she said. Chamberlain, of Royal Oak, liked the plan and later mentioned to House that her husband said cruising in the 1950s and 1960s really happened from Ferndale up to Square Lake.
Chamberlain suggested getting chambers of commerce involved and then didn’t hear any more from House.
Time passed and she learned Mr. House had set up the chamber meetings and the cruise was on. That August, 250,000 people came out to enjoy the first Woodward Dream Cruise.
“That’s what started it,” said Chamberlain, a member of the Woodward Dream Cruise board and president of JNC Consulting LLC.

Mr. House, 69, the innovative man behind the cruise, died Thursday, Aug. 12 at his home.
“He was a creative man,” said Chamberlain, “the kind of idea guy you’d like on any team. Years later, they’ve recognized him as the Father of the Dream Cruise.”
This year, the Dream Cruise and its classic cars will once again draw  thousands of people to Woodward on Aug. 21.
Mr. House was born Aug. 24, 1940 in Northville to Nelson and Evelyn House.
Mr. House is a veteran of the U.S. Navy. He was very involved in the Ferndale community, serving as chairman of three bond issues, member of Ferndale High School Band Boosters, Elks Youth in Government Program, Kids Dream Field Foundation and mayoral candidate in 1996. Mr. House is survived by his wife, Venetta; children, Sean (Tessica), Derek (Andrea) and Sandra (Gene) Nieman; grandchildren, Ava, Mariella, Jessica and Jimmy; siblings, Lawrence, Elaine Mitchell, Alan, Carol Lowther, Maryanne, Michael and Stephen.
Visitations will be held from 5- 9 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 14 and 2-9 p.m. Sunday at Spaulding & Curtin Funeral Directors at 500 West Nine Mile Road in Ferndale.
He will be buried at Great Lakes National Cemetery in Holly.
Contact Oakland Press staff writer Carol Hopkins at 248-745-4645 or Follow her on Twitter @waterfordreport.

Kingston Days Cruise Aug. 28

Be sure to check out the Kingston Days Car Show in Kingston, Mich., Saturday August 28.
This car show is different than the rest. There aren't any trophies, but lots of door prizes.
All entrants will receive a professional photograph of them and their car -- that's worth the $10 entry. Fifty percent of the gate goes to a drawing. Also, a weekend at Soaring Eagle package door prize and lots of friendly town folk along with a big old tractor show are offered.
If you want to have some fun, meet me and a few of our friends at the BP station on Lapeer Road, just north of Dryden Road in Metamora. We will leave at 10 a.m. sharp for the smooth 45 minute drive to Kingston.
Also, meet Ed at Sundance Diner just north of BP at 9:15 a.m. for breakfast or 10 a.m. sharp to start the cruise to Kingston.
Please let me know if you are interested,

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Cruise nights

Looking to take your classic car out, but aren't sure where to go? Then be sure to check out this website for a detailed list of cruises in your neck of the woods.

Car Review: Mazda 6

I wish Mazda had a bigger advertising budget.
It would help them sell the Mazda 6 sedan and take away some the buzz from Honda and the like. For the “Zoom-Zoom” that Mazda has made as their attention getter, they really do have a sort of Zoom that seems lacking in a lot of their competition.
The new Mazda 6 is well positioned to take on their better known rivals from Toyota, Honda and Nissan. The Mazda 6 has nine variations if you count the two engine choices and three transmission offered. My test sedan was about in the middle of the mix and labeled the sedan touring model. It had the base 2.4 liter, 4-cylinder DOHC 16-valve engine with a healthy 170 horsepower and well matched to the also base 6-speed stick shift transmission driving the front wheels. There is a power upgrade that has a V-6 60 degree 3.7 liter with 272 hp and only available with a 6-speed automatic.
The slick styling remains almost unchanged from the base 6 sedan that stickers around $18,450. The top of the heap 3.7 Auto S Grand Touring Sedan could be about $28,390.
Seems like a lot of money but you will get about every accessory possible. A DVD navigation unit is optional.
The test sedan had perfect Comet Gray paint. The alloy 17-inch wheels with P215/55R tires not only looked right but gave the somewhat sporty sedan a very smooth ride even on our nasty Michigan roads. Hey, it’s made right here in Flat Rock, too.
Actually, the Mazda 6 could be mistaken for a mid-luxury sedan with its sloping roof and long hood.
I like accessories, and what seemed like luxury items years ago are now expected. The Mazda 6 in the sedan touring model had about all of the former luxury goodies. The 8-way power drivers seat is a better way to find that perfect location, but the old arguments reoccur when my short lady co-tester drives and she is annoyed that she must actually set the seat in her comfort zone. No memory settings are included but there are plenty of other things like the air-conditioning, tilt-telescoping steering wheel, stereo with a 6-disc CD player including MP3 playback and a jack for a MP3 connection. The standard cloth seats were ok but not too exciting, but the manual lumbar support was welcomed. The leather-wrapped steering wheel also had controls to the audio system and cruise control.
Sometimes overlooked but important items are the all-wheel disc brakes, traction control and stability control.
Fog lights and the chrome exhaust dress up the styling, but I really like the emphasis on the front fenders that budge out and give the Mazda 6 a sporty appearance. That design queue is shared with the rear fenders, too.
Driving the Mazda 6 with the base 4-cylinder engine will satisfy most buyers due to its lively response. However, the V6 engine will make the “6” a real stoplight racer. You will give up around 6 miles per gallon for that extra 132 hp.
Overall, the Mazda 6 was well able to match or even surpass its competitors in every category.
For a little more “Zoom Zoom” in your life, give the Mazda 6 a try.
Check out the “Fast Eddie Cruisin Blog” at

Saturday, August 7, 2010


The public is invited to CRUISE into Hunter House Hamburgers during Dream Cruise Week (Monday Aug. 16 - Saturday, Aug. 21) to enjoy classic cars and some rock n' roll!  The iconic Birmingham diner is setup for a week of live entertainment and bands, covering Elvis, The Beatles, the Oldies and all your Classic Rock favorites.  Enjoy Hunter House's World Famous Sliders, fabulous tunes and a whole lot of family fun.  Let the good times roll!   

Monday, August 16
Patio dining & kick-off to classic car viewing
Tuesday, August 17
6 pm – British Bike Night for Triumphs – All bikers welcome!
7 pm – 10 pm - Toppermost Band, Classic Beatles,

Wednesday, August 18
6 pm – 10 pm - Laughing Mad Men Classic Rock,

Thursday, August 19
6 pm – 10 pm - Laughing Mad Men Classic Rock,
5 pm – Close – DJ Boogie Brian, 104.3FM oldies 
Friday, August 20
10 am – 5 pm –Elvis Presley Tribute,
 7 pm – 10 pm – Toppermost Band, Classic Beatles,
10 am – Close – DJ Boogie Brian, 104.3FM oldies 
Saturday, August 21 (DREAM CRUISE DAY)
10 am – Close – Elvis and DJ Boogie Brian, 104.3FM Oldies
Noon – 4 pm – The Whatabouts, 60’s Classic Girl-Group Hits,
Become a fan!  Follow Hunter House during Cruise Week at
My Photo
Location: Oakland County, Michigan

Ed Noble has been a car enthusiast his entire life. From the 1950s' on Woodward Avenue to writing automotive reviews for The Oakland Press Wheels page, car cruising is a summertime event he looks forward to each year. Ed will write new vehicle reviews for The Oakland Press and also provide some cruise news and other related information.

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