Recap: Woodward Dream Cruise in Ferndale (With Photos)
We've got the scoop on news, interesting tidbits and people profiles from Saturday.
The ground rumbled and the air thundered Saturday as the Woodward Dream Cruise roared through Ferndale.
The classic car parade and prime people-watching event was expected to attract 1.5 million people and 40,000 cars to a 16-mile stretch of the historic avenue from Ferndale to Pontiac.
Did you attend the Dream Cruise? Add your photos to this gallery by clicking the "Upload Photos and Videos" button above.
Read on for a recap of the day's events from Ferndale!
9 p.m.: It's closing time for the Woodward Dream Cruise.
8:15 p.m.: There's less than an hour left of official cruising time for the 2012 Woodward Dream Cruise and people are out in Ferndale enjoying the sights.
If you haven't stopped by the Classics & Cruis’n Legends Vehicle Show yet, you might want to say hello to World War II veteran Jimmy Wolfe. This 92-year-old resident of Altoona, Pennsylvania traveled to Ferndale with his 1931 Ford Deluxe Roadster.
"I like this event. It's very, very nice in Ferndale," he said.
Driving his classic cars always draws attention, Wolfe said - "If you stop at a stop light they're rolling their window down asking questions," he said with a laugh. "It's nice to do something other people like."
Wolfe explained how he got into the hobby: "When you go out in a bombing mission you don't know whether you're coming back," he said. When he did return home, he bought the car he had been admiring. "I got interested in the hobby. I'm glad I did."
Now that he's retired, "it gives you something to put your mind on," he said. "I've met so many nice people at car shows. They enjoy what you have and I appreciate that."
7:30 p.m.: Aaron Stone, owner of new frozen yogurt shop Easy Like Sundae on W. Nine Mile Road, said he's seen a big increase in business yesterday and today.
"It's turning out actually really good for us," he said Saturday, discussing his decision to keep his business open during the cruise events. (Check out our story here about which businesses are open and closed this weekend).
At the Rust Belt Market, Brew Jus owners David Ballew and Nick Schultz are featuring a special Dream Cruise menu and said they're seeing increased business today. "We're busy," he said. "We've had a couple rushes."
Brew Jus, which opened in late June, is the new gourmet slider business in the market and uses homemade beer-based sauces.
Amy Keely, owner of Designer Resale Boutique, said she's had a lot of walk-in business at her shop on W. Nine Mile Road.
"It's definitely going steady," she said. The shop will be open until 11 p.m. tonight. "It's a really good day."
And local shops weren't the only ones doing business because of the Dream Cruise on Saturday. Ferndale resident George Aukskalnis decided to take advantage of the foot traffic in his neighborhood - located just off E. Nine Mile Road - and host a garage sale.
"We're hoping this is our biggest day," he said of the sale, which started Thursday. And hosting a garage sale is more fun when you get to see classic cars drive through the neighborhood all day, he said. "We take turns going for a walk out there."
His sister, Julie Hill, came in from Tampa, Fla., to help out with the sale - and enjoy the cruise. "I'm loving it," she said. "I've been out there twice. It's great."
Have you stopped in to any Ferndale businesses today? Tell us in the comments section below.
6:10 p.m.: Scott McNair traveled to Ferndale from Salt Lake City, Utah, in his 1941 Ford Super Deluxe Convertible Club Coupe this weekend for the Woodward Dream Cruise.
This is his first year at the event - just one stop in a cross-country trip attending several classic car shows. He's headed to South Dakota next.
"It's huge," McNair said, describing his first impressions of the Dream Cruise. "It's mind-boggling. I'd recommend it for someone on their bucket list to check off."
His car is getting lots of attention at the cruise today, where it's featured in the Ferndale Classic's & Cruis'n Legends Vehicle Show. McNair said he hasn't seen another '41 convertible at the cruise yet.
"It's so rare," he said. "I think this might be the only one here."
5:15 p.m.: There's a new slogan up on the Magic Bag marquee - it reads, "Woodward Dream Cruise: Avoiding the actual Motor City since 1995."
A few people were seen taking photos of the marquee on Saturday afternoon.
We reported earlier this week on the slogan contest at the Magic Bag in Ferndale, which asked participants to submit their best snarky saying about the classic car parade for a chance to see their words on the venue's marquee and win a ticket prize pack.
The contest was intended to give residents and business owners along the route a way to voice their frustrations with the Dream Cruise.
"We realize that many residents and business owners located near the Dream Cruise are forced to flee the area, so the Magic Bag slogan contest has become a chance for them to have their voices heard," Magic Bag owner Jeremy Haberman wrote in a press release earlier this week. "After many years of failing to make the best of a bad situation ... the Magic Bag decided to go in a different direction and have a little fun with it."
A post on the Magic Bag's Facebook page on Friday lists the winner as Dave Knepp and says the venue received more than 1,000 submissions in the contest.
5 p.m.: There are tons of Dream Cruise T-shirts and other memorabilia to choose from for sale today in Ferndale - but that's not all that's being sold. Dorothy Barrera-Weil, of Romeo, and her daughter Brooke, of Ferndale, are out on W. Nine Mile Road selling handmade cards that include old family photographs from the '40s and '50s.
"There's a car in every picture," said Dorothy Barrera-Weil. "It's in our blood growing up in Detroit, my dad working for Ford."
What cool merchandise have you seen at the Dream Cruise? Tell us in the comments section!
4:25 p.m.: Wondering what that line down E. Nine Mile Road is all about? People are lining up to take a short survey offered by Ford. Anyone who takes the survey gets a free T-shirt (see photo to the right). The promotion is expected to continue until about 6 p.m.
4:00 p.m.: Oak Park residents Mark and Jenai Drouillard and their 2-year-old daughter Olive were enjoying the festivities on W. Nine Mile today at the Dream Cruise.
"We live so close so we are just checking it out," Jenai Drouillard said. "We love that Ferndale always does all this cool stuff."
3:22 p.m.: You've probably noticed the extra police presence out in Ferndale today. According to Police Chief Tim Collins, police departments and reserve officers from across the region assist the city each year.
Collins said Friday that the Dream Cruise is a "well-prepared event" and caters to families. "We pride ourselves on the fact that we have very few incidents," he said.
Collins and Service Aide Kyle Wolowiec were patrolling down Woodward on Saturday afternoon.
"So far, so good. No incidents to report," Collins said, with the exception of parking being "a little tight, as it always is."
Ferndale Police Lt. William Wilson said earlier this week that Ferndale usually has "next to no incidents" related to the cruise. "It's usually just a big happy family event," he said.
12:55 p.m. Dream Cruise is in full swing in Ferndale Saturday afternoon, with crowds of people enjoying the festivities on Nine Mile Road, which is shut down on both sides, and lined up along Woodward watching the cruise.
Visitors are also checking out the Ferndale Classic's & Cruis'n Legends Vehicle Show, which is located on Vester. Together with Mustang Alley, nearly 800 vehicles are featured today.
Behind each classic car on display is an owner with a unique story to tell.
Sharon and Nils Jonaitis traveled from Pennsylvania to be part of Mustang Alley with their 2013 Ford Mustang GT convertible and say they've met many friends in their travels across the country to various car shows.
"We have a whole circle of friends we've met through this," said Sharon Jonaitis, who is part of the Valley Forge Mustang Club. "No matter where you go, you have a common interest."
10:47 a.m.: Mustang Alley is now up and running - check it out on E. Nine Mile Road.
Ferndale resident Deb Vargovick said she loves Dream Cruise time. "I'm a big fan," she said, noting that she's been out enjoying the festivities Thursday and Friday as well. "It does so much for our economy. It's just such a festive atmosphere."
9:45 a.m.: Cruisers and cruise-viewers are out in full force on Woodward. What's your favorite spot to watch the cruise? Check out what other readers suggested and tell us in the comments section where you think the best spot is.
9 a.m.: Did you know Ferndale is the only community that allows cruise-watchers to sit on the Woodward median? In most of the nine communities along the 16-mile Dream Cruise route, spectators are prohibited from the median to allow access for emergency vehicles, if needed.
The exception is in Ferndale, due to narrow sidewalks, the city's Special Events Director Michael Lary wrote in an e-mail to Patch.
"No tents or other obstructions (are) allowed," he wrote. "Only chairs and blankets."
7 a.m.: If you'll be checking out the Dream Cruise today, make sure to take a stroll down Nine Mile Road to find two attractions that are brand new this year. Cars in Art will feature local tattoo artists painting automotive murals on the body of cargo vans, and a team of local students and retired auto engineers called Restoration Academy will be building a classic car on location.
"The exciting thing is people actually get to watch it happen," said Ferndale Events Director Michael Lary. "I think that that's part of the fun, that you actually get to see how people do these things."
5 a.m.: Temperatures will be in the low 70's today under mostly sunny skies, the National Weather Service says — perfect cruising weather. Last year, a sudden and severe line of thunderstorms forced police to call off the Woodward Dream Cruise hours early.