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Billetproof Washington 2010 Cruise - Problems/Solutions

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Choptop, Jun 30, 2010.

  1. Choptop
    Joined: Jun 19, 2001
    Posts: 3,303

    Choptop
    Member

    [​IMG]

    These signs greet all that enter the fair city of Centralia Washington. There are on every road leading to town, and on nearly every street corner in town. they have been in place going on 20 years. So it makes one wonder just why and how it is that Billetproof gets to cruise in Downtown Centralia.

    It took a ton of work. Phone calls, personal appearances (for those of you that dont know, I dont live in WA. in fact, I'm an 11hour drive away), meetings, traffic impact plans, emergency services plans, parking plans, insurance had to be purchased, forms created, attorneys consulted... on and on. In short, it wasnt easy. I didnt just put the words "Sat. Night Cruise" on a flier and hope for the best.

    The cruise in downtown Centralia is stunning. The city is gorgeous. The timing of the show/cruise is so that the city has put out flower pots and American flags on every light post. There are brick lined streets (more on these in a little bit) and historic buildings downtown. Narrow one way streets make for the perfect loop that leads through the historic district and loops back in front of City Hall (scene of most of the work mentioned above). There are bars and restaurants downtown that stay open late to feed the hungry crowds that come to the cruise. Downtown merchants proudly hang Billetproof posters in their shop windows.

    Now all of that is in jeopardy. Why? Take a guess.

    Its the same bullshit that Wally Parks fought going on 70 years ago... and here I am having to deal with the same bullshit today.

    Drunkenness, burnouts, rowdy behavior, noise, trash... in short.. .stupidity.

    Progress indeed.

    There were townsfolk and Billetproof'ers alike involved in the goings on. I'm not going to try to find a percentage, or lay blame on one group or another. The fact of the matter is that the cruise is a Billetproof event and everyone's actions at the event reflect on Billetproof. The behavior and the cruise are one in the same, no matter the source.

    The city is WELL aware of the problems as are the residents of the downtown area. Yes people do live there. Most notably some of the merchants who live above their shops... the same shops with Billetproof posters in the windows. They were kept awake to the sound and smells of lurid burnouts until the wee hours of the morning. The toes of those that welcomed us with open arms and have done their best to help the show be an enjoyable one have been stepped on.

    As has the toes of the City Managers Office, the Police Chief, the City Council and the Downtown Association. What insult was inflicted upon the City Council and Downtown Association? Well, remember those "brick lined streets"...
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]


    yep those... wellllllll... the stamped concrete brick like circles in the intersections were recently refinished, at no small cost... and are now covered with burnout marks. Nice huh?
    (note: I'm not implying that any of the cars in the photos above are responsible for the marks, the pictured just illustrate the roads and scene downtown very well)

    Not even to mention the amount of people that were downtown as the night wore on. The streets were lined for blocks 3 and 4 deep, and the crowd wrapped around in front of city hall. This cruise was easily as large if not larger than Paso ever was. Kids, dogs, grandma and grandpa all came out to enjoy a warm summer evening and some cool old hot rods and customs. They got a nice cruise.. but every so often it turned into a pretty dangerous environment akin to standing next to the burnout box at a drag strip.

    In short...What I saw made me a little upset. :eek::D

    I think some of you saw that come out when I informed a few people doing burnouts of my displeasure. Hopefully I was too harsh with anyone, if I was I apologize publicly and will make sure I do with you in person as well. I'm a pretty easy going guy, but something had to be done... and seeing as I was the one wearing the cowboy hat (that means I'm in charge :)) and was the biggest fooker on the street... it fell on my shoulders. Until I called the Police Dept. to send a cruiser.

    Now some folks said that the Police were being "cool" about it all and didnt have a problem with the activities. Not so. The Police expected what we had last year, a smaller, mello crowd. What we got was a crowd at least 3 times the size and while the majority were indeed mello, the law of averages says that the number of trouble makers will also increase. So there was not the Police presence that would have kept events from snowballing. Add into that several emergency calls over the course of the evening and police resources were stretched thin.


    I dont want to give the impression that the cruise was an all out riot. Far from it. For the most part it was a very nice event. There was a VERY small number of people that made their presence known.

    Where is this long drawn out post leading?

    Well... there are going to be some changes for next year. Right now everything is on the table... from not allowing a cruise... to closing the main street and having an up one lane and back the other (no loop) type of cruise.... to only allowing cars with a Billetproof window card into the downtown area... to the "cruise" being a closure of the street and a parking lot in downtown sort of thing.... to just a greatly increased police presence not only watching for on street stupidity but for public drunkenness and the like....

    Its all being discussed by me, the City Council, the Police Chief, the Downtown Association and the residents of downtown. And by discussed I mean that some of the parties are screaming at the top of their lungs. Fortunately Billetproof has some friends in all of these organizations so cooler heads will likely rule the day, but just so you all know there are some VERY unhappy people in Centralia, and I cant blame them.


    There will be much more to come from this in the near future as I have spent more than a little bit of the past couple days since the show discussing the situation with the interested parties. There is a solution to this and hopefully I can impress upon them that shutting the cruise down is not the best one. There are other solutions that are on the top of my list. Unfortunately they all involve extra effort and cash to make happen. We will see how much of each is required.

    What can you do? Other than making sure you are not one of the very few causing problems? Suggestions are welcomed. Offers to help are welcomed (I've already gotten a few). There may come a time when some letters to the city council would be helpful.

    I will let you know more in the future.



    in the end... what was the purpose of this post? To let ya'll know that there is a change a'comin' to the Billetproof Washington Cruise. Hopefully we can save it. I'm pretty sure we can.

    And to let you all know that I'm working to make sure this show and cruise remains one of the best in the country. I go to all the car shows I can, I study what separates the good ones from the GREAT ones... and Billetproof Washington has all the hallmarks of a GREAT show. I'd like to see it remain as such and I think there are some things we, not just me, but we can do to make it even better.
     
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2010
  2. choptop, first I would like to say thank you for doing all that you have for this wonderful event.

    second, I would like to publicly thank all the idiots that potentially ruined this for everyone....;)
     
  3. cleatus
    Joined: Mar 1, 2002
    Posts: 2,277

    cleatus
    Member
    from Sacramento

    I can't even count the number of really fun & cool stuff that I -used- to be able to do, that are now no longer available, due to total douchebag idiots who just don't get it - Like Wow, this is so damn fun, I'm going to make sure I can never do it again!
    I think they see everyone turn their heads and must think everyone is going "fuckin rad burnout dude!" when they are actually thinking "what a fuckin dumb ass!"
     
  4. First of all, GREAT THANX Choptop, it really pisses me and many others off, big time, that the "5 percenters" can continually come in and screw everything into the sunset for others in many of the great events!! Personally, the wife and I have not been able to attend a PNW one yet but its in the plans for next year. As an old PNW person, I still have many friends in OR WA area that make it every year and we catch shit about what we once again missed!! I have talked to many and have NEVER heard one adverse comment, only that it improves each year. I read here on the board that there may be some interest in doing one here in the Valley of the Sun, I personally think we could really use one. We can always hope.
    Anyway, hopefully the folks that influence this will understand the problem and help to rectify it so you may continue. BEST OF LUCK in your endevour!! Dave and Sue
     

  5. Thanks for the effort.

    I was recently at the Santa Maria cruise. The police had blocked off the roads, only cars that had a Santa Maria pass in the window were allowed through, and there was a set "end time". meaning, that once the set hours of "cruising" were over, you were on your own with the possibility of getting a ticket.

    Have you talked at all with the West Coast Kustoms group that puts on that cruise? It seemed pretty well managed to me.
     
  6. Choptop
    Joined: Jun 19, 2001
    Posts: 3,303

    Choptop
    Member

    I am looking pretty hard at that model. I took part in the cruise and enjoyed it, even though there are some that will cry.... "it was just a parade maaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaan!!!" I'll get ahold of Penny and get the skinny on the set up.

    Its a great model... however....

    it took at least 25 people to staff it and there were 10-15 police on staff as well. NONE of that is free.
     
  7. Therein lies the rub. Co$t is always going to be a factor.
     
  8. couverkid
    Joined: Mar 30, 2007
    Posts: 1,125

    couverkid
    Member

    Well I want to thank choptop for bringing this event to the NW. I believe he has done a great job and I also believe the downtown is a great backdrop for these vintage hot rods and customs(look around). I believe many cruises have the same problems as we had at billetproof but the show must go on. I love to see people having a good time but there is also a limit. Just because this guy is doing a half block long burnout doesnt mean you have to do a block long burnout.( I am not saying I am a angel,but). Long live the centralia cruise saturday night I had a good time.
     
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2010
  9. rainh8r
    Joined: Dec 30, 2005
    Posts: 792

    rainh8r
    Member

    This is the same thing that created the need for eliminating the term "hot rod" from the language 40 years ago and replacing it with "street rod". It was the actions of a few that tainted everyone else around, so at risk of loosing everything, a big change was necessary. There will always be a few that will be on the limits of control, both locals and visitors, so finding a way to keep them from impacting everything you've worked for without loosing the soul of the event will be a challenge. Good luck-it's a great event and worth the effort.
     
  10. SinisterCustom
    Joined: Feb 18, 2004
    Posts: 8,269

    SinisterCustom
    Member

    90% of those doing the "bad" behavior weren't show participants, so they'll never know or see this thread....

    Hope the cruise can stay in one form or another....
    I don't think blocking off the road is an option for Centrailia, as those roads are a major thorough fare....

    Honestly, the police station is ON the south bound street the cruise happened on, and there were plenty of police around...why I saw no one pulled over and ticketed is beyond me. It seems to me that the people in charge, mayor, etc...needs to have the police take a firmer stand issuing warnings and what not...
     
  11. Choptop, I applaud your hardwork ! I couldn't agree more with you on what your saying. Thanks for a great show , I fully support your ideas for next year( hopefully the City of Centralia will have us back) I'm pretty sure the percentage that were "stupid" won't get any smarter in the near future and will always be a problem. Keep up the great work ! If I can be of help next year, please give me a P.M. would like to help.
     
  12. Can you actual say they weren't ? Just saying, we all could learn from what Choptop is saying. Thanks
     
  13. Thanks for your time and effort Choptop,

    Not that any of them would care even if they did see this thread... poser dipshits don't care about a shows longevity, they are out to ruin a show, act like asses and then move on to the next "scene".

    I didn't make it to the show but my dad made the trip from Seattle, he had a great time and said he wished he would have been able to stay for more.

    He told me right away that the same poser idiots that caused problems for the Tacoma Hotrodarama seemed to have now found their way to Billetproof.
     
  14. flathead fred
    Joined: Jul 18, 2006
    Posts: 298

    flathead fred
    Member

    There were some fairly rowdy dipshits on the sidelines. While we were parked just watching, we saw a near fight with lots of screaming over some jerk saving a parking space. And anybody doing crap after the official end should have been dealt with. We were camped at the fairgrounds, no sleep due to constant burnouts/revs in the middle of the night along that strip too.
     
  15. flathead fred
    Joined: Jul 18, 2006
    Posts: 298

    flathead fred
    Member

    I would also like to offer my hand, and I am sure many others would too, if there is a need for a volunteer staff to help with the cruise next year.
     
  16. SinisterCustom
    Joined: Feb 18, 2004
    Posts: 8,269

    SinisterCustom
    Member

    Yes....cause I was THERE...on the side of the street....seeing exactly which cars were doing it!!!! The majority were not show participants, cause I was ALSO at the show....so I know what cars were which.....:) I can tell the difference between a '66 Nova and a T bucket...haha...
    But there were a "few" show participants getting out of hand as well....on the streets and sidewalks....:cool:
     
  17. torchmen49
    Joined: Mar 5, 2005
    Posts: 291

    torchmen49
    Member

    Alan, first off, thanks for puting on such a great show....yet again, I know a good time was had by all!

    As far as dealing with the few that were out of hand, if they were non participants in the Show, there is very little that can be done now....but if in fact they were BILLETPROOFer's and we know who they are, maybe the show isn't the place for them next year.

    There is a time and place for everything, I love horsepower, burnouts, and speed, but this wasn't the time or the place, way too many bystanders, little kids, lots of cool cars parked along the street, good thing non of these individuals lost controll and took out any of the above mentioned. If that had happend, losing the Cruise would be the least of our worries, the Show would most probably be done.
     
  18. This year was my first to Billetproof as a spectator, and I like to think that I'll be a participant at some point in the near future. If there are still raw nerves from the actions of folks at the cruise, would an attempt to fix any damage (e.g. the roasted bricks) help increase our odds of having a real cruise in 2011? It might send a message to the community that we (as a group) take responsibility for our actions.
     
  19. " You can't fix stupid" enough said LOL and there always will be that element which don't think before they do. Alan, great show !
     
  20. Thompson Speed Shop
    Joined: Jul 3, 2009
    Posts: 203

    Thompson Speed Shop
    Member

    I missed the cruise. My wife and I were up in Seattle, but I did stop on the way up in the morning and it looked to be another great show. I talked with Steve "Couverkid" He said that the cruise was entertaining to say the least! I think letting show participants cruise might be wise, and I invite the dude with the sweet mullit to come to Toutle in August and do all the burnouts he would like. I hate to miss a good time, but I can say that I am glad my cars were parked at home in the shop. I hate to see vintage hotrods being the scapegoat for todays stupidity. It's unfortunate to see history repeat itself; For christ sakes turn the page. Guys have worked hard to keep these events and cars going and on the road and we as participants have responsibility as well. Allen, keep up the fight and good work for all of us. We in the Northwest love your efforts!
     
  21. well said !
     
  22. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 28,552

    Mr48chev
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    There always seems to be that element that has to "show those guys" that they have the hot or hotter car. Often they don't but they are willing to try anyhow.

    The " participants with stickers only" thing seems to work well during the cruise that they put on at Cool Desert Nights in Richland, Wa. They put on a pretty big cruise and seem to keep it under control.

    Making it a closed cruise and then making it a policy that anyone who acts out who has a participants sticker will have their sticker pulled then and there and be escorted out of the cruise area might help. That will knock out a few people who just wanted to come out and show their kids or grand kids what cruising was like back then but so be it.

    I don't know anything else to tell you about how to fix it. There is always that element that thinks their desire to show off and act out precludes common sense, decency and the safety and well being of others.
     
  23. Ditto!^^^^ the Springfield cruise (OR) is like that too...and my model car club does the security...we pulled a guy out last year who did a full on "hemi under glass" wheelstand in a 69 chevelle, then he got a BIG ticket...Good Luck ChopTop!
     
  24. THE_DUDE
    Joined: Aug 22, 2009
    Posts: 2,601

    THE_DUDE
    Member

    I got ten Free dudes for ya
     
  25. ironbuyer
    Joined: Aug 10, 2004
    Posts: 370

    ironbuyer
    Member

    I have said this before "we need to do a better job of policing ourselves". This kind of shit will not be tolerated at our show (HOTRODARAMA). The police have been instructed to have a very heavy hand. I will post before the show with the warnings so pass the word on guys!!!!! Alan I understand where you are coming from.

    By the way sorry we did not make it down. Work is crazy busy and trying to get this building finished. The show looked like it was great.

    Steve Glucoft
    Amocat Speed Emporium
    Hotrodarama
     
  26. Good point, we do have to police ourselfs. Those who brake the rules should not be welcome back.
     
  27. Cruising should be for show participants only. This is what they do at Cool desert night cruise also and they have about 600+ cars.
    When it comes down to it, almost any car can do a burn out, its where and when its acceptable and a cruise in or a car gathering IS NOT THE PLACE TO DO IT!!!!!!!!.
    I have done my fair share of burnouts but never at a cruise spot as non car people just look for excuses to try and end our cruise fun. Burnouts are the number one complaint and the number one reason to get shut down! .
     
  28. The_Monster
    Joined: Sep 8, 2003
    Posts: 1,754

    The_Monster
    Member

    Let me first say, I LOVE the Billetproof car show! It gets bigger and better each year.

    I have attened Billetproof all three years. Last year I went to the cruise and was watching on the sidelines. I remember being dissapointed seeing cars in the cruise that, not only didnt have car show tags in the windows, but involved everything from muscle cars to modern mini vans and full sized trucks.

    I remember a thread just like this one last year after the show... and alot of people were upset over the amount of cars allowed on the circuit that were not suppose to be there, and the shitty displays of stupidity. And there was concern it wouldnt happen the following year.

    Last year, in the show guidelines, it clearly said you needed to display your car show ticket in your window to be part of the cruise.

    The idea of having a cruise that allows only those rides showing the car show tickets to participate, is to feel like you took a time machine back to the old days. Its in an old town with close to period correct buildings, with old cars running the strip and old cars parked on the sidelines.

    Nothing kills the feeling more than to have post '65 cars mixed in the scene, and driving along side these rides. It was to the point that every one of my pictures that I took had one or more modern cars in them. That may be a lost hope... however..... I think a different location is a possiblity(?)

    There are LOTS of old town streets with old worn down factories and warehouses in that VERY same town. (I know, cause I got lost this year and drove ALL around in them, haha! I kept saying "WOW! What a great area for the cruise! These building are GREAT!)

    No, there arent restaurants. BUT there arent expensive brick streets to worry about. These areas are not the towns main streets for the locals and not near the amount of people would complain of the noise. In addition, I think the ratio of pre '64 would be much greater just by getting away from the cities main drag.

    Anyways, thats just my opinion, and I didnt go to the cruise this year because of what I had seen the year before. Just had a feeling...
     
  29. JalopyJenny
    Joined: Apr 26, 2010
    Posts: 21

    JalopyJenny
    Member
    from Seattle

    Choptop, thank you for all your efforts and hard work. My husband and I have been registered for the last 3 years, but finally made it down this year as a participant. I have to say we had the best time ever at this show! We frequent just about all PNW shows, and kudos for an amazing event!

    As for the issues at hand, I agree that a closed cruise for participants only is probably the best bet. This is the only way of controlling the cruise. Its unfortunate it has to come to this, but I think the only way of getting the city to agree to another year is if we make a serious effort to control the situation in drastic measures.

    During the cruise my husband and I parked the 51 on the sidelines to watch for a break. During this time there was a fight two cars down over a parking spot and drunkenness, and we were almost taken out by some jackass doing a burnout who lost control. Not to mention we had a friends daughter with us who would have been injured or even worse. A majority of the Billetproof participants are very responsible and I am sure you will get all the support and volunteer time it takes to get this handled.

    Flathead Fred and I are in for any help you may need. Please P.M. us if our assistance could be of any help! Our car club is also at your service if needed.

    Jenn
     
  30. First off, I would like to give a huge THANK YOU! to Alan for all the long hours and hard work he puts into organizing and running each Billetproof Event.

    Alan, I really like all three of those ideas, I think if you combine the best parts of the three ideas, you could have downtown cruise that involved closing down main street, and closing off a parking area to only those cars with Billetproof Window Cards displayed for a set amount of time. By setting a limit on who, where, and how long they can participate. The participants would have more accountability for their actions. Which would hopefully lead to less problems. In addition.....

    We must do a better job policing ourselves at the event. Steve said it best.
    I think it would also be in the best interest of those who want the cruise to continue on. To form a volunteer group to help out Alan with the cruise. Having a half dozen more people on the look out for trouble would hopefully help minimize any potential problems that may arise.
     

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