PERRIS, Calif. (June 21, 2019) –– The City of Perris hosted the 20th annual Rods & Rails festival at the Orange Empire Railway Museum on June 8, 2019.
Engines were hot, the sun was shining, and good vibes were percolating as more than 2,000 residents from Perris and other surrounding cities participated in one of the most exciting events of the year. Amateur and expert car enthusiasts alike braved the heat and attended the event in appreciation for one of the best motor displays in southern California.
More than 185 cars and 26 motorcycles, some of which only leave the safe haven of their covered garages for this annual event, were featured on the Museum grounds, showing respect and admiration for decades of automobile history.
Victor M. Paredes, owner of a 2009 Harley Davidson Fatboy, had a picture of his son, a United States Marine and other United States Marine Corps decorated on the bike.
As participants traversed the rows of cars trying to narrow down a favorite or two, they were welcomed with stellar music by the Delfonics, and perhaps even a treat from one of the eight food vendors present. A potato festival, a petting zoo, some arts and crafts and even trolley rides reiterated the notion that this is truly an event for everyone.
Several participants commented on the great location of the event being at the railway museum, as plenty of shade and space for the cars were available. Participants were also able to learn about trains, trolleys and street cars.
As the sun began to reflect off the after-market chrome bumpers and warm the payment under the white-rimmed tires, Perris Mayor Michael Vargas began recognizing the magnitude of the whole day.
“This is one best events throughout the whole year,” said Vargas. “It’s a really well attended event and it’s great to see so many of our neighboring cities join us out here with family and friends. We just couldn’t have asked for a better day.”
The family-friendly event is a favorite of most of the Perris Community, including Council Member David Starr Rabb, who learned to drive when he was 15.
“Today’s event is one of my favorite events,” said Rabb. “The cars and motorcycles are obviously amazing to see, but it’s great seeing all the residents come and enjoy the classic cars, the music of the Delfonics and so many of the great food options.”
Council Member Malcolm Corona, whose favorite car is a 1963 candy red Buick Riviera, was fortunate enough to find the exact model at the show, rebuilt from motor to transmission, but still appreciates the residents even more than the cars.
Said Corona, “There’s so many beautiful people and beautiful cars and great food. I am just excited to see all the acts perform and everyone enjoying themselves. That’s what it’s all about.”
Council Member Marisela Magana - reminiscing about how her first car was a Honda Civic and was just happy to have a set of wheels to get around in - today she admired the beautiful classic hot rods as she enjoyed a warm summer day.
“This is a family friendly event for everyone. It’s good to have these types of events where we can all come together and enjoy a sunny Perris afternoon together,” said Magana. “With great weather, great food and amazing cars, there’s not much else you can ask for on a Saturday afternoon.”
The Rods & Rails event ended with presentations of awards for various categories of cars and motorcycles, including the Mayor’s Choice Award. The list of the award winners are as follows:
• Best of Show Motorcycle - #7 Gilbert Martus
• Best of Show Car (Modified) - Mark Durcharm Blown, Red 28 Dodge Coupe
• Best of Show Car (Showroom Stock) - Motte Museum, 4 door Packard
• Mayors Choice - Motte Museum, 1931 Ford Victoria
• Top Car Club Attendance - Southside Axle Draggers
• Top MC Club Attendance - North County Indian MC Club