Even though "Cruising" is now prohibited on the streets of Modesto, California, it was a huge part of the social culture all the way into the 70's. Downtown Modesto's 10th Street is where it all started...it was called 'Draggin' 10th. My first recollection was around 6 years old with my father, who graduated in 1940 from Modesto High, we made the original circuit which consisted of a turn around the famous Burges Drive In, down 10th, a turn at the Greyhound Depot or Lucky's Auto Parts parking lot then back around until you ran out of gas.
In my high school days at Downey (Class of 63)...yes I knew George Lucas...we cruised now one-way 10th Street and around on 11th Street. We were three abreast, one way, now, not just draggin' 10th but drag racing at every signal light. There was an added right turn onto J Street, then out McHenry Avenue and a turnaround at Shakey's Pizza. This was repeated over and over until your 23 cents a gallon gas tank ran dry...or until you broke off to head over to a party with some girls you may have met on the cruise.
When the movie American Graffiti was released...we knew who each character in the movie represented. Graffiti weekend gives many of us baby boomers a chance to relive the nostalgia and enjoy all the hot rods. Even though many of the hot rods you see today are nothing like the condition of the hot rods of the 50's and 60's. Please enjoy the slideshow from this year's cruise 2012.
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