Billetproof Northwest Enters Second Cool Decade
By Bob Roseberry
Leaving home in the morning, there was light rain which changed to general, somewhat threatening, overcast by the time we got to Chehalis. For a while, it looked like the "Washington Washout" moniker trail boss Alan Galbraith has used in the past might come true. (Man, we are tired of making jokes about it.) Fortunately, the weather stabilized and by late morning it was good old t-shirts and shorts weather and another great Billetproof Northwest was on its way to being in the books.
Despite the way the weather looked, at 9:00 AM there were almost 300 registered rods on the grounds with more rolling in and fanning out into all the nooks and crannies around buildings, under the trees as well as the grassy open areas. By mid-afternoon when the Awards Ceremony wrapped up, nearly 100 more participants had shown up which helped to make the Lewis County Fairgrounds a crowded place indeed.
As usual, Billetproof was a mix of cool stuff. We saw traditional hot rods and customs, as well as trucks, street and track gassers and one great big bus-specifically a 1959 Flxible Starliner brought down from Tacoma by its intrepid owner, John Salick! Best of Show was appropriately taken by Chuck Hawman's chopped, smoothed and supremely lowered '36 Ford 5-window, Scott Nixon displayed his own cool take on a '59 International, Jerry Dunbar showed how to push the VW Type 1 envelope and Don Rutzer took Best Hot Rod with his very traditional '31 Ford roadster pickup. If you think we enjoyed ourselves, you got it!
Now into its second decade in Chehalis, Billetproof is as strong as ever and shows no sign of slowing down. The concerns that Alan might have had about continuing the event seem to have evaporated which, from our point of view is nothing but good. We do not, at this writing, have the date for the 2019 Billetproof, but we'll have it when it's published and will be looking to see all of you there!
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