Cars Are Stars, But Other Activities Fun



The stars of the 18th Annual Beeline Cruise-In & Charity Auto Show are the cars of course, but the other attractions add to the fun of the April 29 and April 30 event.

Friday activities at Green Valley Park are geared for the car entrants, members of the Rim Country Classic Auto Club, which hosts the event, and sponsors. However, the public is welcome to meander over to the park at the west end of Payson’s Historic Main Street and check out the vehicles as they arrive or get ready for the 4 p.m. cruise around town.

The actual car show Saturday opens to the public at 8 a.m. and continues throughout the day with raffles, a 50-50 drawing, judging of the vehicles, oldies music and items for sale from vendors, including food.

The big raffle prizes are a $750 ring from Payson Jewelers for the women and a “hot rod” grill for the men, of approximately the same value, said Ken Gunderson, chairman of this year’s show for the RCCAC.

“The grill was a big hit last year. It looks like a hot rod engine on a motor stand,” he said.

Among the vendors participating this year will be stations selling Montana barbecue; hot dogs, hamburgers and brats; homemade and novelty ice cream; Bondurant Racing with two of its race cars; and those with car-oriented merchandise.

Proceeds from every Beeline Cruise-In are distributed to Rim Country charities.

Recipients of 2010 car show proceeds were presented in July to Veterans Helping Veterans; Habitat for Humanity; Payson Supply Line; DPS Quilt Angels; Pine Strawberry Food Bank; Payson Helping Payson; Kaitie’s Closet; Big Brothers Big Sisters; Tonto Rim Search and Rescue; St. Vincent de Paul Food Bank; and the Payson Senior Center.

History of the club

The Rim Country Classic Auto Club, as it is known today, had its beginnings back in 1993 when a few people had a common interest in restoring and driving classic cars. They cruised around Payson where they met and talked about their cars.

The meeting places were Kentucky Fried Chicken, Pioneer Title and Phil White Ford parking lots.

As the group flourished and the number of members grew, Phil White Ford became the main meeting place with the management providing a meeting room upstairs.

In 1994, Rim Country Classic Auto Club members decided to have their first annual car show to help charities in the town of Payson. Since then the car shows have been held in the following locations throughout the years: 1994 Pioneer Title; 1995 Payson Courthouse; 1996-97 Chapman Chevrolet; 1998-2000 Payson High School parking lot; 2001-03 Mazatzal Casino parking lot; and since 2004 Main Street and Green Valley Park. 

As of today the membership has dramatically increased with more than 85 families participating. Within the membership there are more than 100 classic automobiles and hot rods both restored or in progress.

Today, the Rim Country Classic Auto Club has its regular meetings on the first Wednesday of each month at 6:30 p.m. at Tiny’s Family Restaurant on East Highway 260. The general meetings are open to the public — whether you own a classic vehicle or not.

The Rim Country Classic Auto Club has a yearly calendar, as do most other car clubs, to plan cruises and make hotel and car show reservations. The Rim Country Classic Auto Club has on its agenda at least two cruises a month and they range from a single day at the Craft Fair in Pine, Ariz. to three-day cruises to Pinetop, Ariz. for the “Run to the Pines” and the “Route 66 Fun Run” in Kingman, Ariz.


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