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Event Coverage 2018 Roadster Show

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Ken Boellner, Jul 9, 2018.

  1. Ken Boellner
    Joined: Dec 21, 2017
    Posts: 9

    Ken Boellner

    A friend of mine just sent me an email from John Buck to the LA Roadster club. This is some of it. I have worked the show for the last two years and not made a dime. I have paid my staff from the other shows (Grand National and Sacramento) accounts for the past two years.I have made my payments to the club and thats it. I have paid the club $300,000 as I was contracted but will have a hard time continuing under the current contract. The negativity from the club and on the street last year really hurt the show. The price point of $20 for a roadster onsite was not a huge draw. We had 225 pre registered that just wanted a mug. We had 215 show up on Sat. This year was down 50% on vendors because of the light turnout last year. It was really pulling teeth to get vendors to come back. I understand there are a few members that will not work the show. I thank those that did help. The presence of Red shirts was better then last year. I have given the club the balance of this years event of $75,000. I have invested $150,000 of my retirement into this venture and was able to get back $50,000 last year but not this year. I am still in the hole $100,000 and need direction on what the club wants to do. I have been sent negative emails from a club member and quite frankly i am feeling like the club wants the show back into their own hands. If so please let me know and I will be happy to work out arrangements with the club to make that happen. Otherwise if there are certain members that want to give this a shot gets the clubs approval and notify me. I am a good standing of this club and want the best for it and the show.
    John Buck
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  2. Happydaze
    Joined: Aug 21, 2009
    Posts: 892

    Happydaze
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Some stuff on the LAR Facebook page about exciting changes to be announced for 2019.

    Chris
     
    Special Ed likes this.
  3. I got the same message, and heard on another site that the roadster club accepted his deal.
    But, whether it goes back to the way it was remains to be seen, I doubt the club can absorb that kind of debt.

    Mick
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  4. Jalopy Joker
    Joined: Sep 3, 2006
    Posts: 23,975

    Jalopy Joker
    Member

    stumbled so hard last year with many poor decisions that did not create a smooth transition - will be tough to gain back what has been lost - but, change is part of life good & bad
     
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  5. 42merc
    Joined: Dec 19, 2010
    Posts: 621

    42merc
    Member

  6. A Boner
    Joined: Dec 25, 2004
    Posts: 5,282

    A Boner
    Member

    With $300,000.00 going to the "Club".....is the "Club" sinking the ship?
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  7. thirtytwo
    Joined: Dec 19, 2003
    Posts: 2,594

    thirtytwo
    Member

    I don’t think the problem was JUST changing hands, people came from all over the country for LARS cost involved with travel have went up, and lot of more venues across the country are happing that are interesting as well ...

    When people have other options, then an event makes a bunch of changes which appears for more financial gain people look elsewhere..

    I went to paso for almost a decade , but never went to Santa Maria ... didn’t interest me anymore ..chose something else

    This year was the first year I missed LARS since 2001 , I went to TROG instead , and glad I did.... i’ll Be moving from so-cal soon, so for me not being Local to that event doesn’t make sense to attend anymore , lot of people are retiring or moving outside of California I think that could be some of the issue also
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  8. A Boner
    Joined: Dec 25, 2004
    Posts: 5,282

    A Boner
    Member

    Another street rod verses hot rod thing. Most of the cool cars don't meet the criteria, and some have to park outside the "show car" area.
     
  9. GZ
    Joined: Jan 2, 2007
    Posts: 975

    GZ
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Detroit

    At the end of the day, LARS will continue. Any event that has continued for multiple decades will always be subjected to changes and growing pains. I still believe that nothing will ever compare to LARS. Where else do you have a legitimate swap meet that is full of great ORIGINAL parts, a massive amount of cars and projects for sale, a huge commercial vendor area that has nearly all of the leading hot rod suppliers present, as well as MULTIPLE car shows all on the same piece of property? Oh, then there are all of the sideshows that alone are worth the price of travel. I remember as a kid when the event moved from the Great Western Exhibition grounds to Pomona, people said the show would never be the same. I also remember when it went from a one day event to a two day event and people also said it would be ruined. Well, decades later it is still the best damn event for early Fords, hot rods, street rods, customs and virtually all other kinds of cool things that have engines. I have been to Lone Star, TROGs, GNRS, all the big indoor shows and while these are great events, they ain't no LARS. I will always be a fan.....
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2018
  10. oldpl8s
    Joined: Apr 11, 2007
    Posts: 1,298

    oldpl8s
    Member

    Who ever wants to run it next year should survey vendors and buyers to see what they want. I think Pomona charges a fortune per day so a 3 day event may not work out. Most people seem to like it the way it was 3 years ago, although I think the apathy shown to swap sellers on reserving spaces was a major pain for me. They used to make sellers rot in the parking lot for 3 days, then have a mad land rush to grab as many spaces as they could around 10 am on Fridays.
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  11. HOLLYWOOD GRAHAM
    Joined: Apr 11, 2007
    Posts: 1,398

    HOLLYWOOD GRAHAM
    Member
    from Ojai,Ca

    Going to be tough to get the crowds back. Some kind of miracle will be needed indeed. Maybe a new venue might help, the fairgrounds are huge. I hope they come up with some good ideas that work after all it is/was the best around.
     
  12. mike in tucson
    Joined: Aug 11, 2005
    Posts: 485

    mike in tucson
    Member
    from Tucson

    There are 7 basic groups that together assure the success/failure of the show. Those groups are:
    the roadsters (a main attraction)
    the "other" cars that attend
    the spectators
    the indoor exhibitors
    the outdoor exhibitors
    the swap meet vendors (the other main attraction) and
    the folks who put the show on (and their attitude).
    Not sure about the spectator gate but Friday looked thin, Saturday was much better. Outdoor exhibitors looked
    decent. Roadster count was way down. Indoor exhibitor count sucked. Swap meet
    vendors were a reasonable number but not great like previous years. There is nothing that
    suggests show success as a Building 4 full of quality vendor booths, lots of neat cars, and
    the aisles full of spectators.
    IF I ran the Zoo (to quote Dr. Seuss) I would canvass as many people in each group as
    possible to find out what they liked and disliked to get a cross section of the remaining items
    to improve. Any roadster owner who said they didn't like the $50 entry fee would be labeled
    as a whiner. Heck, I would continue to enter even if the entry were $100 and I didn't get the
    two free dinners. (wouldnt that piss off the whiners?) The vendors, exhibitors, and swap meet vendors draw the spectator crowds.
    One thousand roadsters at $50 each is only $50K. For vendors, 150 vendors at say $2,000 average each is a whopping $300K. 700 other cars at $50 each is only $35K.....don't know about the
    swap potential but the gate is where the potential is.....this show should draw 75,000 spectators
    at a minimum.....if entry is $20 per (a bargain), the gate is $150K. Add in some slice of the parking and concessions and trinket sales and the revenue should be over $500K easily. Of course, the overhead is bad...especially the venue rent. Right now, the roadsters and the indoor exhibitors seem to be the problem...and the indoor exhibitors are playing a "wait and see" game while the
    roadster owners are playing some other "help me feel important" game. For me, I will continue to purchase an entry every year....I want the show to succeed!
     
  13. uncle buck
    Joined: Feb 13, 2007
    Posts: 1,523

    uncle buck
    Member

     
  14. I am only 1 of the East Coast guys that spent the time, and money many times, to go to the LARS. You guys that live on the West Coast piss and moan about what it costs you. That is a mere pittance of what it costs us to attend. Be thankful that the show is in your backyard. The LARS is a tradition. We get to see cars, commercial vendors, and the great parts at the swap meet, that you don't get to see on the East Coast. We don't have anything on the East Coast to compare with the LARS. That is why we spend the money to go, and we don't cry about the expense..
     
    deucemac, gtrhotrod, maneri and 6 others like this.
  15. Muttley
    Joined: Nov 30, 2003
    Posts: 18,340

    Muttley
    Member

    WTF is so hard about this?!?! For years it was awesome...........just keep doing the same thing. It's not rocket surgery.
     
  16. Or Brain Science! :D
     
  17. mike in tucson
    Joined: Aug 11, 2005
    Posts: 485

    mike in tucson
    Member
    from Tucson

    Uncle Buck, my bad on the multiplication.... maybe that's why the show wasnt profitable! Good catch!


    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
  18. Lil32
    Joined: Apr 4, 2012
    Posts: 1,181

    Lil32
    Member

    nickthebandit, U said it
    we come across from Aussie every year, flight costs $2000 return for two
    plus car rental and hotels, we have always enjoyed the show and we do not
    get a mug or lunch thrown in
    we will be back next year IMG_4048.JPG
     
  19. uncle buck
    Joined: Feb 13, 2007
    Posts: 1,523

    uncle buck
    Member

    Mike, Easy mistake. On the same subject, I would bet the walk in gate / spectator count to be closer to about 25,000 at most. This is only a guess with nothing to back it up.
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  20. partssaloon
    Joined: Jan 28, 2009
    Posts: 378

    partssaloon
    Member

    Announced today the Roadsters of LA will take it back over for next year.
     
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  21. A Boner
    Joined: Dec 25, 2004
    Posts: 5,282

    A Boner
    Member

    Good! That should give them a $300k cushion that John Buck didn't have. Way too good a show and swap to fail!
     
    Muttley likes this.
  22. deucemac
    Joined: Aug 31, 2008
    Posts: 1,015

    deucemac
    Member

    I read this thread and have mulled over a response for some time. First, let me say that I have attended the meet for about 44 years straight. With a roadster, without a roadster, closed car in preferred parking and just plain spectator. The last 2 years have not been anywhere up to what LARS has always been. Don't misunderstand me. I have a great time every year, seeing old friends and making new ones. But, structurally the show is NOT the same. An across the board hike in every fee possible has caused many repercussions. One vendor has been attending every year since 1974 and is a good friend of mine. I bumped into him last year on Saturday morning as he and his wife were eating breakfast at the greasy spoon in front of building 4. We chatted and I told him I would stop by later at his booth. He told me he didn't have a booth this year because his space rent was trippled. Several club members I spoke to had similar stories from other vendors saddled with sudden tripping of space rent. This year I was talking to someone knowledgeable about the operation and he mentioned that the corner where Brito set up his display cost $10k for the weekend. A woman vendor passed by my car and stopped to chat. She mentioned that last year on Saturday they made $3500 all day. This year, $215 all Friday and $2000 on Saturday. Friday was a ghost town no matter where you went. Building 4 was reduced to less than half, with special parking used to fill the dreadful lack of vendors. Less than a dozen people walking the aisles most of the day.
    Two things that were sadly down that I noticed was first, the free feed the L A Roadsters puts on Saturday night on camp hill. There are 8 person picnic tables set up 5 tables wide by 12 rows deep. My son and I did a head count and there were 170 people there including the club members and a few people that sneak in every year. What happened to the years when seating was at a premium and the L A Roadsters members stood on the sides until all were fed and then sat and ate? The real glaring problem was Bob Drake. Bob has always had a very large presence, back in the days when the vendors set up under the big nets and even last year when he had a booth in building 4 that stretched from the left through center and right aisles and ten or so booths deep. Where did Drake go? Worst of all, he is a sponsor of the show. His entire presence was a flyer and 2 token gifts in the goody bag. Buck treated the show as though it was an unstoppable cash cow no matter what the cost or who you insulted. Although a club member, he failed to maintain traditions and assumed that the show was so solid, nothing could cause real problems. It is not a business yet needs good business principles to operate. But moderated with a friendly welcoming atmosphere as the club always did. I always appreciated club members thanking me and others for coming. Something no other show ever did. I have heard that the swap meet was run much better, not perfect but better. That is a plus. The club taking the show back means lots of fence mending and perhaps restructuring fees somewhat. I wish them well and I will be there every year until the show folds up or I do. Thanks for letting me rant.
     
    lurker mick and uncle buck like this.
  23. oldpl8s
    Joined: Apr 11, 2007
    Posts: 1,298

    oldpl8s
    Member

    I heard the club members were getting too old to put on the show and now they are 3 years older. Some of them bought their roadsters new!
     

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