Generally when someone suggests a trip to Detroit, especially before Spring, there had better be a pretty good reason to book a ticket. I can't think of anything much better to get me out of SoCal during this time than the Detroit Autorama. For over 40 years the big prize at the Autorama has been the Don Ridler Memorial Award and over the last few decades, this award has grown to be one of the most coveted prizes a builder or owner can receive. In hopes of fame (and maybe fortune), some of the country's best bring their best to Detroit to compete against their peers to make their mark in hot rod and custom history.

Over the last few years, the promoters have realized that the hobby is bigger than just shiny show cars and they started opening up the basement and called it Autorama Extreme, thus providing a place for guys and gals with less showy and more gowy rides to feel comfortable showing off their own kind of handiwork. The fit and finish might not always be the same as the cars upstairs but some of the engineering can be.

As in years past, several pinstripers have gathered to show their talents and auction off pieces of their work with the benefits going to a worthy charity. I could go on and on, but I know if you're anything like me you really just want to see some cars.

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