Springfest 2013 is the 4th incarnation of one of the larger car shows every year. This time around, it was being held at Virginia Beach Sportsplex and National Training Center; which actually has some pretty nice facilities.
I honestly wasn’t sure that I would be making the drive, as my car was barely running, barely put together. Not to mention the fact that it had been raining the entire week and was supposed to continue through the weekend. By Thursday, most the people I knew who were going had already left to party at the beach prior to the show. I couldn’t take time off from work, so if I was going, I’d have to leave Saturday morning. The rain continued well through Friday and my desire to make the trip was fading rather quickly.
It wasn’t until photographer Danny Hsu hit me up and told me that he was also trying to drive down early Saturday that I felt reinvigorated. I still wasn’t certain if my car would make the near 4 hour drive, but I figured that if it gave out on me, that would just give me an excuse for a rebuild.
The drive wasn’t actually as bad as I thought it would be, though by the time we got to the venue, the line extended out into the main road.
The show gallery was packed as well as the spectator parking lot, the sun was beating down, and the event was in full swing. I’m fairly certain that cars from all makes and models were present.
Before I even got to take a good look at all the cars, the clouds started rolling in, and just as predicted: It started raining. People quickly packed into their cars, or under tents as the wind started to pick up, and the rain engulfed the show.
As the weather raged on, there were a few cars that started leaving. I simply sat in my car, waiting for the rain to let up. I didn’t exactly drive 4 hours to leave just yet, and just as quickly as it came, the rain left.
What’s more, is you could really tell the tenacity of a lot of the hardcore enthusiasts, who not only stayed to weather the storm, but as soon as the rain stopped, they got to drying.
Over the course of the next several hours, I was treated to absolute eye candy, as I made my rounds through the show area. The weather ended up being amazing after the rain, with a nice cool breeze. Everyone was having a good time, drinking, listening to music and generally just hanging out with others who all share the same passion.
There was actually only one thing that I didn’t like about the whole experience and it was the fact that the parking lot was left an absolute mess once everyone cleared out.
In fact, a buddy of mine was one of the only people that stayed back to clean up the lot. He’s not someone affiliated with any of the sponsors, the people that put the event together, or the actual staff of the venue itself. I left briefly to get gas for the ride back home. He said he would catch up. He didn’t show, so I went back. By then, he had already gone through 4 full bags of trash by the time I started helping. It was actually still pretty ridiculous by the time I got there.
He told me that he didn’t feel right leaving the place a mess, that it was a nice event and that people might not be inclined to let us do things like this at nice venues if we kept leaving them like this. While it probably doesn’t mean much, I think he deserves some recognition, because he’s right.
I know it wasn’t everyone, but even a little help would have been nice. I just don’t think that it looks particularly good when we all go somewhere and leave a mess behind. We get enough shit from law enforcement when people generalize the community as a whole, and I don’t think we need any more negative press, especially for events of this size.
Other than that, I personally had a great time, had the chance to talk to and meet a lot of awesome people. I’d definitely make the trip out next year, no hesitation.
If you’re looking for the full gallery, click here.