Forty Years of Street News….Mountain West Street News Picnic Celebrates Its Very Existence.
Forty years ago there was a need in the automotive universe in Utah and surrounding states to inform fellow street rodders, racers and other car hobbyists of the happenings within the culture. Because of this Mountain West Street News was born.
Beginning in 1979 as a simple newsletter style publication Mountain West Street News is today a seventy-nine page saddle stitched offering on its most recent issue. In today's cyberspace digitized culture the existence of Mountain West Street News is still an important part of keeping folks informed as it is to the history of our hobby. The dissemination of info still reaches many who either aren't tech savvy or don't have a desire to be. In fact many subscribers today, such as myself, who have technology at our fingertips still support the publication. Because it's one more source of information on our universe and you can never have enough information in the car hobby. Without Mountain West Street News the history of our hobby in our region could have been drastically different.
One the first Sunday every June Sandridge Park in the Ogden, Utah suburb or Roy is the home of the annual Mountain West Street News Picnic. An old-school "rod run" that is purposely advertised as a picnic as opposed to a traditional car show.
Prior to Mountain West's founding the rod run was the antithesis of the traditional car show where cars were parked as to class and judged for trophies under strict guidelines. Rod run culture, what the majority of shows are based off of today, changed that practice either by allowing parking as a club or as close friends with many styles of vehicles together as opposed to rigidly parked in classes of the early car show model. In fact the Mountain West picnic has no classes although a few dignitaries such as the police chief of Roy city, the fire chief, the Mayor and the publishers themselves honor a few lucky owners with a plaque celebrating their favorite rides.
The proceeds of the show self-fund its existence. As someone who worked in the print industry for near a decade and a half as I understand the cost of publication. Digitization helped the printing process before ereaders and smartphones took over and became the preferred medium for news reading.In spite of this technology shift many folks show up to renew or start subscriptions (included with entry fee,) get in on auctions or purchase food from the vendors on site. Some choose to bring a lunch or grill a few burgers on a small grill among friends.
The fortieth anniversary of anything should be celebrated! Judging by the attendance of car owners and spectators that day shows that there is a community need and a love for those who have dedicated four decades producing the publication. Something created by hobbyists for hobbyists and I for one applaud them for sticking to their guns and taking that chance forty years ago.
So congratulations to Mountain West Street News on their 40th and to publishers and the newest members of the Utah Hot Rod Hall of Fame Bob & Weezie Eames and family on this milestone!
Until next time…..
See you out and about and keep the rubber side down.
One of the most radical tri-five Chevy's I have ever seen is this shortened '55 four door. Transformed into a two door coupe and sporting a tubbed rear full of rubber.
I have always loved this body style of Chevy pickup. This 1970 model is a very nice build sporting a hard bed cover and a nicely detailed small block between the frame rails.
© All text and photos 2019 Jay Horrocks Jr. except where indicated.