by Lance Lorca and Jarrett Carpenter
As summer comes to an end, many students go back to school and many adults return to work with a hope that the sun would have stayed up a little longer. To some people, this time is a time of mourning for the beaches and the late nights, but to others, they have a few things to crossoff their summer bucketlist, one being the Lake Avenue Classic Cars Night.
The last classic car night sponsored by Lake Avenue Church made its last appearance in 2016 on August 26. It was truly a night to remember. These nights are a summer tradition in Lake Avenue Church that occurs usually twice a month in the summer. Hundreds of people around the Los Angeles area come to this free event as a way to connect with each other through cars, food, and music. A fantastic live band played unforgettable hits from the 60s such as songs by The Beach Boys and The Monkees. It truly felt like going back in time seeing glistening Shelby Cobras to Plymouth Roadrunners and hearing “I’m A Believer” in our ears. This car show was not just limited to vintage muscle cars. There was a Lamborghini Murcielago, a dragster named “American Freedom Fighter”, and three old tractors and their kindhearted owners. The roars of muscle cars through the parking lots and the sizzling patties on the grill made the night a balance of intensity and relaxation.
The main highlight of the night was the dragster demonstration. As hundreds gathered around the beast, its engine growled with smoke and gasoline. As it revved, heartbeats became faster and anticipation became uncageable excitement. Within thirty seconds of its nasty growls, the jet engine on the dragster’s back let out a fury of fire. The unexpected forty feet blast of flames made kids run to their parents and made more people trying to get a quality video and picture head to the dragster’s inferno. Dead leaves in the parking lot in its path were incinerated and the yellow street paint separating the two lanes the dragster was on turned into ashes. Though it was a risky move to put on a show for the audience, everyone left extremely satisfied. No previous car night at Lake Avenue ever had the intensity as this one had.
To put icing to the cake on its final night, a chili cookoff went perfect with the vast showcase of cars and music. Lines were packed with people trying to get samples of the contestants’ homemade chili. Each chilli had a unique personality and flavor ranging from rich in spices to sweet and salty. Though it was a contest to see which one was the best out of twenty contestants, each one was a winner of their own because each one catered to a different taste bud.
As Christian students, we have learned many experiences from this night. As a car show sponsored by Lake Avenue Church we found many people who stated how these events enriches our faith as a community. An owner of a custom 1985 Chevrolet Monte Carlo stated that: “Cars and music are things that everyone has in common, it gets people in the community of all ages and races to come out and participate”. Another man owning a
1960s Ford Futura and a 1929 Ford also explained how this event gets the community engaged. “It brings friendly people from all over the place. It’s a nice, casual place to have fun and share your car”.
Although it is the end of the car nights in 2016, 2017 is sure to have a bigger variety of cars, attendees, and especially the homemade chili.
“ For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.” Romans 12:45 NIV