DU QUOIN — General Tire Street Machine Nationals will celebrate 35 years at the Du Quoin State Fairgrounds at this year’s show, which runs Friday through Sunday.
Matthew Loucks, part of the event’s on-site staff, said there is something for everyone to enjoy at the family-friendly event. Street Machine Nationals does‘t have a lot of rules, it is just people celebrating street machines.
He added that the event draws a lot of really nice street machines, and their owners all have a strong passion for their cars.
“There’s definitely more than just vehicles,” Loucks said.
The event will include a manufacturer’s midway featuring new parts and accessories for vehicles, a Swap Meet hosted by Egyptian Antique Auto Club, a pro-judged Show-N-Shine, General Tire Burnout Competition, demolition derby, SEMA Young Guns and appearance by pinstriper Von Hot Rod.
Von Hot Rod will have custom stickers for the first 1,500 people who stop by his booth. He will place the sticker and pinstripe around it for free on smaller items. He will give a quote for larger items.
SEMA Young Guns is a competition for builders age 26 and younger. The winner will receive an expense-paid trip to Las Vegas and a spot in the National Battle of the Builders Young Guns Competition.
Tickets are $15 at the gate or $10 in advance. Advance tickets are available at O’Reilly Auto Parts, Black Diamond Harley-Davidson and Roadhouse Harley-Davidson.
Owners and builders love to talk about their cars, and here are a couple of those stories.
Troy LaCrone of St. Clair, Missouri, had his 1971 Camaro at the fairgrounds on Thursday afternoon.
“It is a street car. You can drive it, show it or race it,” LaCrone said.
During the six years he has owned the car, he has shown it all over, including at Hot Rod’s Drag Week and Street Outlaws in Memphis.
“For a car you can actually drive, it’s probably one the fastest cars here. For fast cars, it’s probably one of the few that’s actually driven,” LaCrone said.
LaCrone first came to the Du Quoin show as a “kid” in 1984.
“Street Machine Nationals is an awesome community of like-minded people enjoying the show,” LaCrone said.
One of the things about the Street Machine Nationals in Du Quoin is that exhibitors actually get to drive their cars and cruise around the fairgrounds.
You can find LaCrone’s car on Grandstand Avenue (the road in front of the grandstand) in what has been dubbed “Pro Street Alley.”
On the corner of Main Street and Pacer Avenue, you will find Terry Podschweit of West Frankfort with his 1967 Mustang, along with his sons, grandson and friends and their cars.
Podschweit was at the first Street Machine Nationals in Du Quoin and has been to every one in Du Quoin since then. In those early years, his Mustang was Grand National Runner Up, losing to a very familiar face.
“My boy, Rodney, beat me out of first place,” Podschweit said.
The 1967 Mustang has a custom paint job and suicide doors (that open in front). Podschweit said his son, Tim Braddy, owns a body shop and did the conversion on the doors long before kits were available. He also painted the car.
Recently, Braddy offered to tune up his dad’s golf cart. When Podschweit went to get, it was sporting a Mustang Cobra theme, with a new blue paint job, Ford emblem and cobra on front.
Street Machines is a family affair.