Goodguys 29th Pacific Northwest Nationals

By Jack Tockston

The Goodguys’ 29th Pacific Northwest Nationals enjoyed perfect weather at the Washington State Fairgrounds in Puyallup, WA, from July 29-31, 2016. Over 2,700 rods, customs, muscle cars, trucks, and collectables filled the 160 acres. Spectators’ cars from eleven states and two Canadian provinces overflowed both gigantic (free) lots.

This marks my 25th year attending this gathering. Goodguys promotes twenty such events across the country, and this one has historically been well attended. Part of the success here has to do with the sprawling venue including the 88,000 square foot Sleep Country Showplex featuring 200 vendor spaces, show cars, exhibitors, food concessions, and 40 renowned pinstripers poised to highlight your ride.

Outside featured a swap meet, more vendors, exhibitors and food choices plus various popular corrals ranging from “Builder’s Choice” to “Trick Trucks.” Add some 140 acres crammed with nearly 3,000 race and street machines, and it’s auto-nirvana.

With so many from which to choose favorites, mine originate with my dad. Pat Chamberlain of Tacoma has entered his blue ’41 Chevrolet Master Deluxe 2-door sedan (350-ci V8, automatic) “in a couple of hundred car shows since built in ’91.” It was originally his dad’s, and I mentioned my father’s first car was a twin in green he bought new for $825.

A beautiful red ’66 Buick Riviera with 455 cu in big block and supercharger standing proud through the hood caught my eye. Owner-builder John Knapp and wife Pam of Vancouver, WA, said it was “a cast-off from his dad, had it sitting around, and decided to rod it.” My dad owned only Buicks from 1952 until he passed in 2013 —
but none looked like this!

By the amphitheatre, I admired an immaculate and stock-looking ’48 Chrysler Town & Country “woody” convertible — powered by a Viper V-10. It belonged to Goodguys founder/president Gary Meadors who passed away in December 2015. It now belongs to Marc Meadors, Gary’s son, who inherited it. Goodguys events are about cars, meeting old friends, making new ones, and remembering dads.