It may be hot and it may be August, but the South Shore's Hot Tahoe Cruisin' car, truck and motorcycle show presented by the Good Samaritans Safe Ride club has an engine - or rather about 100 engines - all its own.
Good Sam Safe Ride Co-founder Tom Argo says that Hot Tahoe Cruisin' differs from Hot August Nights, another car show that pulled into South Lake Tahoe last week, in a few key ways.
For one, it's a much smaller show, with only about 100 cars to Hot August Night's almost 6,000. And yes, at more than 6,000 feet above sea level, it's cooler.
"We don't like the huge car shows," Argo said. "We want them to be friendly, fun and enjoyable. We don't want to go to Reno. We want to stay here where it's cool."
Hot Tahoe Cruisin' is a year older than the 26-year-old Reno-based show. Argo co-founded the event in 1985 along with a car-giveaway raffle, and in 27 years, he's seen 50 vehicles go to both South Lake Tahoe residents and visitors.
Longtime South Lake Tahoe resident Norm Mowat's attends almost every Hot Tahoe Cruisin' with his 1923 Ford T Bucket. Mowat moved to South Lake Tahoe 42 years ago, and he said he likes the small-town feel of the show.
"This is nice," Mowat said. "It's good because it's local. The problem with Hot August Nights is that they have so many tourists, and they're in your car. It can be pretty rough. Plus, it's hot down there."
On Tuesday, spectators strolled between the cars at the base of the Heavenly Village Gondola. For car buffs like Ira and Theresa Aboulafia from Simi Valley, Calif., Hot Tahoe Cruisin' is more manageable size-wise than some of the region's larger shows.
"The smaller shows are more intimate and personal," Ira Aboulafia said. "Hot August Nights, it'a so big, it's hard to see everything,"
Vehicles started rolling in on Tuesday for the Lake Tahoe show and will be in town through Sunday. Argo will award a People's Choice plaque every day, but the major award ceremony will take place on Saturday.
Axie Navas / Tahoe Daily Tribune
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