2011 Billetproof Car Show – First 7 Years

History of Billetproof – The Original

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Fifteen years ago Kirk Jones and Jay Ward had a idea. The idea was to create a car show with unique, hand-crafted trophies and to express the growing old school hot rod movement. They held their first new car show at the Albany Bowl in Albany, CA. In attendance was 26 traditional cars and about 100 friends. The music was provided by The Stillman in the bowling alley’s tiny, packed lounge. The year was 1997 and the show was simply named Billetproof.

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In 1998 on a rainy day at the Albany Bowl attendance jumped to 63 rods and the venue was busting at the seams. Billetproof was ready for a bigger venue. The next year in 1999 Billetproof thought they had found a new and bigger home. The MLK Jr. Waterfront Park in Oakland, CA. Right on the water, with grassy areas to relax in and fully equipped with built in BBQ’s to cook on, the park seemed twice as big as they needed… Wrong! On this beautiful sunny day in Oakland, 129 choice hot rods and customs filled the parking lots to the brim and with twice the amount of participants, Billetproof was on the hunt again for a larger venue.

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Going back to their roots in 2000, Billetproof choose the Holiday Bowl in Hayward, CA. Surely with parking for 300 cars Billet found it’s new home. When a surprising 225 hot rods and customs showed up and the show was pleasantly full and you could still breathe. Billet thought this would be as big as the show would ever get. Little did they know, on Sept 29th, 2001 at the same Holiday Bowl with 300 car capacity, the parking area squeezed in 320 cars and had to turn some 40 rods away.

The 2001 Billetproof was sold out weeks ahead of time to hear bands like the Dynatones and the Sore Thumbs and to witness The Retarded Sparks Car Club chopping a Model A Tudor Sedan right in the middle of the show. For the forth time Billetproof had to pack up and search for a bigger venue.

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In 2002 Billet found themselves in Livermore, CA at the Livermore Rodeo grounds. Granted the place was huge and a killer grandstand to see all the action. You would think, home, finally,home… but there was one thing that stood in the way of home. Dust and lots of it. That year not even two solid days of watering trucks could keep the dust off of 468 hot rods and nearly 3000 spectators. The biggest turn out in Billetproof 6 year history.

Speaking of history, in 2003 Billetproof landed in the Antioch Fairgrounds where it still stands today. On Sept 20th, 2003 on a typical scorching Antioch day, the Fair was bursting at the seams. 638 rods, customs, bombs and trucks were viewed by more than 3000 spectators! The addition of the Kustomizing Kompetition where two teams cut, welded and hammered out two Rancheros into there new shape with “WierdOh’s” winning. Since 2003 Billetproof has been blowing up the Antioch Fair grounds around the last week of September for the past 8 years and 15 years altogether. With past host clubs like the Poor Boys and the Swanx handing the torch Antioch-grown club, the Dragoons, this 15th year anniversary Billetproof pulls out all the the stops.

So if you are ready to roll into the show and enjoy the day, jump in, we are heading up to the gates of the Antioch Fair grounds for Billetproof 15!


(Editor’s note: Nick, let me know where you got these fliers so I can give credit)

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