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Event Coverage Turlock or Pomona?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by skip65, Apr 3, 2022.

  1. Which swap would be good for a day out? A bit of background, a group of us are coming over from Switzerland for Viva Las Vegas, not the most H.A.M.B. Friendly event, but as we are a group, I’m sure we will have a lot fun. After VLV, Andrea and I will be staying in the south west area, I have seen these swaps are on the same day, not looking to buy lots of stuff ( but you never know :) ) just soak up old car vibes. I see there’s also dirt track racing in Bakersfield on the Sunday. As this my first trip to the States and we don’t get the chance to see much racing/swaps with a high percentage of American parts over here, I’m really looking forward to it. Any other tips appreciated
  2. mrspeedyt
    Joined: Sep 26, 2009
    Posts: 933


    i’d pick turlock.
    abe lugo likes this.
  3. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 32,120


    It may not be as easy as you want to believe unless you have access to a private plane.

    Example : Turlock is 475 miles and 7 hours and five (make that 8 hours) drive time from Vegas.

    Pomona is 243 miless and 3 hours and 37 minutes from Vegas

    Bakersfield is 246 miles and 4 hours and 21 minutes drive time


    None are leave Vegas for a few hours and run over and run back.

    I used to have a friend who used to sell at Turlock 30 years ago if some of the old timers remember Vince who drove a bus and usually sold taillight lenses and other small pieces. It was always one of his favorites.

    Checking maps Running to Turlock from Vegas is about like running to Lemans from Neuenhof time and distance wise.
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2022
  4. Sorry :confused:, forgot to mention, once VLV is finished, we will travelling around, we have hired a camper van, no fixed itinerary yet.
    @Mr48chev thanks for the info, I’m getting the feeling that Turlock might be more “real” than Pomona
    Driving long distances are something we are used to, as car racing banned here, we drive to northern Germany, Denmark etc to feed our addiction
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2022
    Mr48chev, 41 GMC K-18 and catdad49 like this.

  5. blowby
    Joined: Dec 27, 2012
    Posts: 8,656

    from Nicasio Ca

    The posts and pictures you've seen of Turlock are usually for the January meet, the biggie. The spring meet, at least the one time I went, was just a fraction of the size.
  6. VF-1
    Joined: Jan 21, 2021
    Posts: 99


    I used to attend the Pamona Swap Meet all through the 1980s, while living in San Diego. Pamona was a BIG event back then, I’m sure it’s still a great venue. Welcome, and enjoy your stay!
    41 GMC K-18 likes this.
  7. MeanGene427
    Joined: Dec 15, 2010
    Posts: 2,310

    from Napa

    The last couple Turlocks I've gone to were much smaller than the past, I didn't find one thing I wanted, and didn't see others buying much. The grass area was about 2/3 full, and the rear paved area was about half. Couldn't get anyone in my area interested in going. Didn't even see any of the legendary Turlock "power bullshitters" who congregate in groups of 3-4-5 to knowingly discuss in dept their latest polished or patina'd widgit, and take up residence directly in front of that part that you are actually interested in buying, and no matter how long you try to look around them, just ain't gonna move- especially if they have fancy club jackets. Say excuse me and you get the how dare you, unworthy pond scum look lol...
    hotrodA, 49ratfink and Blues4U like this.
  8. blowby
    Joined: Dec 27, 2012
    Posts: 8,656

    from Nicasio Ca

    I went to Turlock this January. The grass was full, the car corral was full, every space on the pavement was full. I don't think there was an empty space on the entire grounds. It was packed. Again though, the one time I went to the Spring meet it was half or less. That was pre-Covid however, will be interesting to hear if anyone goes this year.
    49ratfink, Blues4U, HSF and 1 other person like this.
  9. Deuce Daddy Don
    Joined: Apr 27, 2008
    Posts: 5,428

    Deuce Daddy Don

  10. Jalopy Joker
    Joined: Sep 3, 2006
    Posts: 29,471

    Jalopy Joker

  11. Budget36
    Joined: Nov 29, 2014
    Posts: 10,394


    I haven’t been to the Spring Turlock for years but it always was pretty small. You could park close to the entrance and there was no charge to enter. Seems it took just a few hours to see everything.
  12. Unless it’s changed a lot, I’d hit the Long Beach swap. I think it’s just a better vibe. Then, have a burger at the Big Boy Broiler in Downey. See the Lion’s museum and the Petersen museum. These are all within an hour of each other.
  13. GZ
    Joined: Jan 2, 2007
    Posts: 1,195

    from Detroit

    The other advantage about Pomona is the NHRA Museum, which is on the same property. I would do Pomona.

    In addition to the swap meet, the car corral at Pomona is HUGE.
  14. Black Panther
    Joined: Jan 6, 2010
    Posts: 1,937

    Black Panther
    from SoCal

    I'd say Pomona too. It's a historical place for car guys. Swap will be about twice the size of Turlock...and you'll have 3 times as many cars for sale to look at. Especially since you're not really going to buy anything. Many times the smaller swaps are better for finding stuff..especially Turlock...but twice as far doesn't make sense to me. If you're in Pomona you'll also have many car related places nearby for the days to Turlock, not as much.
    41 GMC K-18 and Flathead Dave like this.
  15. Flathead Dave
    Joined: Mar 21, 2014
    Posts: 3,832

    Flathead Dave
    from So. Cal.

    If you're talking about the regular Pomona Swap Meet, it is every other month. I usually get a space at Pomona. I haven't sold there since the pandemic began but it's picking up now.
    If you're talking about the Grand National Roadster or L.A. Roadster show and swap meets then those are once a year in January and June.
    I would choose Pomona over Turlock. It's larger. It's right at the NHRA Pomona Dragstrip parking lot and you'll be traveling on Route 66.
    Southern California is full of history and great scenery with the beaches, mountains and the desert, all which are 40 minutes away from Pomona in either direction.
    Enjoy an IN-N-Out burger. But the food is always better at the beach areas.
    And since you'll be in Pomona, go see the Early Ford Store in San Dimas. It's pretty much outside of the Pomona / L.A. CountyFair Grounds.
    more images

    The Early Ford Store
    • Car Parts
    • Website:
    • Address: 108 W Bonita Ave, San Dimas, CA 91773
    • Phone: (909) 305-1955
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2022
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  16. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 32,120


    That will work. There are a lot of spots in the western US where you see signs that say Next gas 100+ miles. Quite often that means next anything except rocks and sage brush in some areas.
    skip65 and 41 GMC K-18 like this.
  17. I think that's the key. IF your not going to buy anything then Pomona (and the surrounding area) has more to offer. Like others have said, go to the Early Ford Store in San Dimas (check their hours of operation). But, remember this is a LARGE swapmeet with mostly car stuff really not geared towards the early car market. It's a lot of muscle car era parts, new and used, VW stuff and household/clothes fodder......with some gems tucked in.

    IF you're ever planning to come back to the states to look at cars/parts to purchase make sure it's around the LARS (LA Roadster Show) time in June, that swapmeet is GREAT and is really geared towards early cars.
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2023
    Irish Mike and 41 GMC K-18 like this.
  18. 51504bat
    Joined: May 22, 2010
    Posts: 3,901


    I've never been to Turlock and its been years since I was to Pomona but the last couple of times at Pomona it was a lot of cheap tool vendors, VW stuff, and household yard sale junk. Maybe things have improved. Also, when Pomona first opened up again after the lock down was lifted the Que to get into the meet was hours long. Given that your schedule won't allow you to be in SoCal for the LA Roadster's Father's Day swap meet, Pomona with the other nearby attractions is probably your best choice. Others may have different thoughts.
    uncle buck and 41 GMC K-18 like this.
  19. blowby
    Joined: Dec 27, 2012
    Posts: 8,656

    from Nicasio Ca

    I've been to Pomona once, scored some wheels, rolled them about a mile to the truck. As others have said, there's lots of new or non car stuff. Which may be OK for an out of state visitor, especially if you need some new huaraches or a sombrero.

    But I agree, hit Pomona swap, NHRA museum and all the other car places in SoCal. Nothing much to do in Turlock after the swap meet. You could pick some fruit, if you have huaraches and a sombrero.
    41 GMC K-18, skip65, GZ and 1 other person like this.
  20. Thanks to all, sounds like Pomona is the one, lots of other attractions close by, NHRA museum etc. will be definitely returning to the states, my wife is originally from Minnesota, so next time will be the cold north:)
  21. redo32
    Joined: Jul 16, 2008
    Posts: 2,014


  22. Uribe
    Joined: Jan 27, 2019
    Posts: 69


    I have been to both, and both are great, pomona seems to have more venders.Turlock had much more regular poeple selling thier stuff and it was so much more stuff. I walked aroud looking at everything for 4 hours and still didnt see everything. I say if your looking for parts, turlock, hands down
    blowby likes this.
  23. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 7,774



    Yes, the location of the Veteran's Stadium on the Long Beach-Lakewood-LB Airport border area is accessible via major roads and freeways. But, there is no need to go to the Broiler in Downey since is is no longer Harvey's. Just across Carson Street from the Veteran's Stadium, there is a very cool diner called Dale's Diner on the Carson Street diagonal location. It is set up to make you think it is 1950-60. Plenty of parking and the food is outstanding. We used to come here in 1963 almost daily from the nearby LB City College campus, just down the street. The last time was in 2019 when I had another set up day at the Lion's Dragstrip Museum for the new center and attractions.

    But, these days, the airport/aircraft company buildings have been turned into a massive shopping dining location. called the Long Beach Exchange. So, the other folks in your traveling party can see the latest in So Cal shopping centers with plenty of variety to fit every need or want, including an In-N-Out Restaurant.

    We have experienced the old Pomona swaps and comparing them to the ones at the Veterans Stadium, we prefer the Long Beach location over the Pomona location. Long Beach is centrally located and the above mentioned Lion's Dragstrip Museum is only a few minutes West of the swap meet location.

    This whole area was our teenage hot rod cruising area from 1958 to 65. The famed Cherry Avenue drags location with its long history of generations of teens from the local areas, is just a mile or so West from the Vet's Stadium and Lakewood Blvd.
    Cherry Avenue acceleration

    Have fun on your trip, but stay safe when enclosed in close quarters.

    Last edited: Apr 4, 2022
    41 GMC K-18 and Budget36 like this.
  24. Blues4U
    Joined: Oct 1, 2015
    Posts: 7,043

    from So Cal

    Re the drive times mentioned by @Mr48chev above, those are really only good very early in the morning, before traffic starts. Heading home from Vegas on a Sunday can be 1 long traffic jam all the way through the desert. But head out early when it's still dark and it's a breeze. Watch your speed between Vegas and the state line, Nevada Highway Patrol likes to take the opportunity to get one more swipe at Californian's wallets as they try to escape.
    Flathead Dave and Chili Phil like this.
  25. 49ratfink
    Joined: Feb 8, 2004
    Posts: 18,480

    from California

    the one thing Pomona has over Turlock is when in Turlock that is the only thing to see or do where So Cal has all sorts of things.
    Flathead Dave, Blues4U and jnaki like this.
  26. On your next trip to the USA, do what some friends of mine, and I did. Go to the Turlock swap meet on Saturday, drive a good part of the way south Saturday evening. Get up early, go to the Long Beach Sunday morning, then to the Grand Roadster Show. After the Roadster show, go to Bob's Big Boy for burgers, then take a cruise on Mulholland drive.
  27. VF-1
    Joined: Jan 21, 2021
    Posts: 99


    Come back for Speed Week (Bonnivile Salt Flats). Truly Hot Rod Mecca! Camp at Bend in the Road. Pit Passes are a must! Every Hot Rodder needs to experience it at least once... :cool:
  28. lumpy 63
    Joined: Aug 2, 2010
    Posts: 1,628

    lumpy 63

    Gasser show @ Lions museum Long Beach , April 23 . A must see.
  29. Just thought I would put a finishing note on this. We’re home now, had a fantastic trip, love the USA , meet a lot of great friendly people, saw a bit of the country and coast, visited the Early Ford Store, CW Moss, NHRA museum. While in Vegas, went out to the raceway, there was competition cars running 1/8 mile, walked the pits, talked to a lot of super friendly people, nothing makes you want to get straight in garage and back on the project, than such a day. As fate would have it, we ended up going to Pomona, it’s a bit of crazy clash of styles, people and cars, walked the swap, overwhelmed by the amount of for sale/display cars, ended up sitting with a beer and watching the cars cruise the centre road, but gave the $18 hotdogs a miss. And thanks to everybody who put in a suggestion, we just couldn’t do it all, maybe next time. Speaking of next time, I’ve been following Tom Davidson coverage of the Lonestar roundup, now that’s the place for me BD1D2295-BF03-414B-8F92-5FE6B5548C80.jpeg

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