By Nick Swain – WUFT-FM
A Gainesville car club will have its monthly “Cruz-In” car show Saturday night.
“Street Rods,” a club comprised of classic car owners and enthusiasts, will display 20 to 150 cars for spectators from 6 to 9 p.m. in the parking lot of the Springhill Commons Publix, 9200 NW 39th Ave.
Street Rods started having Cruz-Ins about a decade ago. They happen the second Saturday of every month.
Richard Russell, the club’s founder, is no novice when it comes to cars. Starting at an early age, Russell made cars a passion. Cruz-Ins are a way for other car enthusiasts, like him, to connect.
“It really is is just a way for everybody to dust their car off once a month and get out and see all the people that you know and talk and it goes on with that sort of thing,” he said. “It’s just a social thing really.”
Janis Slean and her husband Terry have been members of the Street Rods for almost 20 years. Janis Slean said the Cruz-Ins bring in car fanatics from all over the state, some who come to see other peoples cars and some who show off some of their own.
“There are several car clubs in Gainesville,” she said. “But we get people from Jacksonville and Orange Park, and they come from Williston and Starke, Ocala.”
The Street Rods put on other shows throughout the year and sometimes collaborate with other organizations to have larger car shows. They also use the Cruz-Ins as a way to raise money for cancer research through the charity they sponsor, Stop Children’s Cancer.
Russell said anybody can come learn about cars, no matter how young, old or inexperienced they are.
“There will be people standing and sitting in front of their cars, and if you have any interest to talk to them about it, they will be more than happy to talk to you,” he said. “It’s a very open group and they’re open to talk about it.”
Hana Engroff editing this story online.