Guest Blog: Dan’s Hot Rod Photo goes to Vintage Torque Fest

Guest Blog! Dan’s Hot Rod Photo goes to Detroit!

Guest Blog!
My buddy Dan Podobinski is a photographer based out of Indiana, he attends a lot of the same type of shows that I do.  Since I can’t be everywhere at once, Dan was nice enough to share some of his images from the 2013 Vintage Torque Fest with all of you through the blog here. Okay class now all together say “Thank You Dan!” You may have seen some of his work recently in Car Kulture Deluxe Magazine, or on the HAMB. You need to go follow his page on Facebook here and buy some prints of his great photographs! And now on with the show!

The modern “car show” has, in many ways, become stale.  The large, corporate run shows lack any real feel.  Power parking, lawn chairs and crybaby dolls have become the norm.

The independent, regional hot rod shows that have sprung up in the last decade or so turn that trend on its ear and Vintage Torque Fest is at the front of the pack.  Show creator and master promoter John Wells has managed to take what started as a vehicle to raise money for the charity organization that he and his wife Kim created ( and turn it into a full blown festival of all things hot rod related.

There is more action packed into this two day event than one could ever expect to find at a large, corporate event.  Aside from hundreds of traditional hot rods and customs we find a near constant stream of live music from rockabilly, surf and garage bands.  There is, of course, the obligatory pinup contest, though this one is much classier than many I have seen.  Speed freaks can get their groove on watching vintage jalopies race around the dirt oval and hot rodders even have the opportunity to take their pride and joy out for a few hot laps. Unfortunately, heavy rains kept track action at bay this year save for a few folks who stuck around the day after the show to get some seat time.  This didn’t stop some guys however, as impromptu mini bike races sprung up on a far end of the fairgrounds, followed in short order by the big boys racing vintage flat track motorcycles around the makeshift circuit.  As I said, nonstop action!

The excitement reaches a fever pitch with the charity art auction.  Culture artists from around the world contribute themed pieces each year to be sold off to the highest bidder.  The work is stunning and is worthy of display in any gallery.  Besides the art in the auction, there are the numerous artists and vendors selling all types of hot rod and lifestyle merchandise.

If this sounds like it is right up your alley then I encourage you to first check out  and see what this organization is all about.  Then, look up and see what you are missing and, finally, make plans to be in Dubuque, Iowa this time next year and catch the nonstop action that is Vintage Torque Fest.

Upcoming Show! Vintage Torque Fest!

The first weekend of May is a busy one in the world of Midwest hot rods & kustoms. In addition to the Stray Kat 500 in Dewey, OK is the Vintage Torque Fest held in Dubuque, IA. I was lucky enough to attend the first two Vintage Torque Fests and man oh man did I have a blast.

What you need to know about VTF:

  • all of the proceeds go to charity, a good one
  • traditional hot rod & kustom car show, other kinds of cars are welcomed but must park in their own areas, the main show area will be pre-65 hot rods & kustoms, no billet, no digital, for a full listing of the requirements click here.
  • One of my favorite notes on that page is “Stuffed animals, cry baby dolls, rubber rats, fake food drive in trays, skeletons in passenger seats are not for Vintage Torque Fest.”
  • Music to include:
    The Afterdarks
    The Alder Kings
    Captain Stab Tuggo
    Concrete Rivals
    Death By Rodeo
    Delilah DeWylde & The Lost Boys
    The Heroine
    Hot Rod Hucksters
    Krank Daddies
    Labretta Suede & Motel 6
    Babe Miller and His 10-4′s
    Misery Jackals
    Muddy Udders
    Royal Rhytmaires
    Surf Zombies
    3 On The Tree
    The Von Ehrics
    Dale Watson

Here are some of my photos from the first 2 shows:



So, if you can make it to the Vintage Torque Fest you’d better go, you’ll probably be sorry you missed it. If anyone has a time machine that I can borrow I would like to hit both shows that weekend.

See you at a show,