Rod And Custom Show Lives Up To It’s Past, Plans For The Future
The Rod And Custom Auto Show last weekend was a big hit with attendees, who unanimously loved the new format and the new location at the new BEND XPO in East Moline.
The show, in its 39th year of bringing great hot rods, classics, customs, and bikes to the Quad Cities every January has had a few different homes over the years. Some long-time attendees tell me that the show had humble beginnings in an old Zayers building, moved to the former Rock Island Arsenal Building, and spent the last 2 decades in the QCCA Expo Center in Rock Island.
When Townsquare Media here in the Quad Cities acquired the show from creator Glenn Rohm a few years ago, the idea was to try and expand the appeal to car enthusiasts and casual show-goers alike. And we wanted it to grow bigger.
This year was a start in the right direction. With over 130 car and motorcycle displays of every imaginable style and school of the hobby across the midwest, the Rod and Custom Show got a much-needed boost of fresh, never before shown inventory. We have some of the greatest fabricators, painters, and shops right here in the midwest, and they came out in great numbers this year to show their works of art and speed.
We brought the Ecto 1 Ghostbusters Ambulance all the way from the Volo Auto Museum, which drew the expected amount of excitement from generations of fans of the franchise.
Kids this year could also create works of art, one of which will be made into a fabricated, laser-cut, and painted metal sign for them to have at home. There was a tire-change competition so you could challenge yourself, and the clock for fun and prizes.
Pinstriper Jim Hetzler from Kickin' Kolor is always a show stopper, as he put the finishing touches on a hotrod at the show. He also featured a "woody" station wagon on which he hand-painted the wood grain look. Most folks were amazed at the attention to detail, but that's just Hetz being Hetz, a legendary painter who makes his home right here in the midwest.
Show goers and car displayers loved the new venue, the bigger, and brighter BEND XPO in East Moline, which was purpose-built to showcase vehicles in the perfect environment. Custom paintwork sparkled and popped, with more room between the cars for folks to see the detail and talk to owners. The food menu was awesome, whether you wanted a hot dog, pork chop sandwich, and anything in between. We also drank them out of Bud Light! Short lines and quick service meant more time for car-gazing.
Abernathy's in downtown Davenport hosted Saturday's pinup show with a scary theme, taking a cue from the Ghostbusters feature.
2022 was a great restart to the storied Rod And Custom Auto Show! Keep your eyes open for info on next year's "Bigger, Better and Best" indoor car show!
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