If your heart beats a little faster when you catch a glimpse of a car from the 50s or 60s, downtown San Diego is the place to be. You will find car shows hosted at various venues throughout the city all summer long. Even those that do not consider themselves to be car enthusiasts will have a great time at these shows. The crowd is positive, and it is easy to make a couple friends and share a lot of laughs.
Step back in time from 5 pm to 8 pm every Thursday night in La Mesa Village during June, July and August. If you have a car that you want included in the show, participants must be present a little early, but not before 3:30 pm. Awards are handed out at 7:30 pm, and receive a trophy and have their picture added to the website.
Cruising is encouraged, but not burnouts, tire chirping or motorcycle wheelies are permitted. This is definitely one of the best places to be in downtown San Diego on Thursday evening.
Over the Hill Gang
If you do not mind cruising on over to Temecula Valley, this car club meets at Richie’s Diner, the fourth Tuesday of every month. They also get together for a Tuesday morning breakfast at 7:30 am. To join this cub, you need to have an American-made car or truck that is at least 35 years old. Ladies are welcome to join too.
CNC Saturday Night Cruise
On the fourth Saturday of every month, feel free to join in or come out and watch the Clairemont Neighborhood Cruisers. Vehicles must be from 1976 or prior, and the cruise begins at the Clairemont Square Shopping Center. The club hosts an annual Park In the Park show as well. Club dues to join are $15 per person, but it is always free to bring the family out to just admire the cars.
Monthly and Annual Cruises
- 6/21 – Rods and Woodies on the 101 – Begins in Encinitas at 5 pm on Hwy 101 between the old lumberyard and D street.
- 6/21 – The Motorhead Misfits – Cruise departs from Beef n’Bun in El Cajon at 6 pm. Classic, hot rods, customs and motorcycles are welcome.
- 7/3 – Village Classic Car Show – Open to fire, law and military past and present personnel, and it begins at 5 pm in Chula Vista.
- 7/8 – 7th Annual “Cops and Rodders” Car Show - Begins at 9 am at Liberty Station in San Diego.
- 7/22 – Main Street America – All cars and trucks are welcome. The cruise starts at 10 am in Seaport Village in San Diego.
- 8/4 – Park in the Park Benefit and Car Show – Clairemont Community Park is the meeting place for this 7 am event.
- 8/26 – Picnic By the Bay – Pre-73 cars and trucks are welcome to meet at Seaport Village at 9 am.
- 9/9 – The Greatest Show on Turf – Vehicles of all years are welcome at this show. It begins at 9 am at Liberty Station.
- 10/21 – All American Pow Pow – Finishing off the cruising and car show season in downtown San Diego is this event that takes place at 8 am at Seaport Village Embarcadero. Muscle cars, classics and trucks are welcome.