Classic cars take center stage during show

Car enthusiasts admired the shiny coats of paint, chrome and steel that glistened in the sun during the 15th annual Jewel City Kiwanis Car Show on Sunday at Verdugo Park.

Classic cars, hot rods and muscle cars brought back memories of decades past for attendees the show, which helped raise funds for local charities.

About 185 cars participated in the show, which was expected to raise about $10,000, said Bob Morris, secretary of the Jewel City Kiwanis Club.

Sitting underneath a tarp, Walter Rogers of Antelope Valley took refuge from the sun and the occasional gust of wind as passersby stopped to look at his 1959 Pontiac Bonneville.

Rogers and his wife left their home at 5 a.m. to get to the show.

“We’ve come to this for maybe five years, and it’s worth the drive,” Rogers said, adding that he owned a Bonneville when he was 20 years old.

“It’s just a little bit of shades of past,” he said.

In another corner of the park, La Cañada Flintridge resident Spencer Murray and his daughter, Bonnie Murray, lounged on lawn chairs with their cars nearby.

Spencer Murray drove his 1953 Chevrolet pickup truck to the park, and Bonnie Murray brought her 1965 Ford Mustang.

“I’m really old, and I had one in the 1950s so it’s like deja vu,” Spencer Murray said.

The event benefited nonprofit organizations, including the Glendale YWCA, YMCA and Glendale Assn. for the Retarded.

One of the highlights of the show was a 1957 Ford Fairlane that attracted a crowd of onlookers.

The bright cream-colored car had a retractable roof and cost owner KJ Miller of Leona Valley about $5,500 in 1986. Miller spent nearly $30,000 to restore it.

“It’s a fun car, and you don’t see many like this,” Miller said.

The Glendale High School Jazz Band performed during the event, and attendees took part in opportunity drawings and raffles.

Glendale resident Robert Simonian and his 7-year-old son, Andrew came to look at the cars.

Andrew looked around and tried to find a 1969 Chrysler Plymouth, the same car his father owns. But he admitted he preferred another type of car.

“I like Mustangs,” Andrew said.

Dottie Percy of Glendale attended the car show with her two Chihuahas, Molly and Bluebell, who traveled in a carry-on pouch.

“I was just passing by and I saw this,” Percy said of the event. “It’s nice to come back and see cars when I was in high school.”

Ray Bisordi of Burbank also said the show was a way to take a trip down memory lane. Bisordi brought his 1967 Lotus Europa, which was one of only 297 built, he said.

“I had my first one back in 1969,” he said. “I have four Lotuses now.”

 ANI AMIRKHANIAN is a news assistant. She may be reached at (818) 637-3230 or by e-mail at  ANI AMIRKHANIAN is a news assistant. She may be reached at (818) 637-3230 or by e-mail at

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