Each year on the third Saturday in August, more than a million people
and more than 30,000 muscle cars, street rods, custom, collector and
special interest vehicles cruise down Woodward Avenue in a tribute to
the classic Americana activity: cruising. Made famous during the
post-war era, locals would cruise in their cars along Woodward Avenue,
often looking for peers or friends who were also out for a drive. From
the car that shined the brightest to finding out who got the jump in a
stoplight drag race, Woodward Avenue has always been about "bragging
This cruise is said to have become the largest single-day event in the world! As Americans anticipate the big event, the days leading up to the annual Woodward Dream Cruise are traditionally full of anticipation along the Woodward cruise strip as many visiting and local classic vehicles are brought out for ancillary events scheduled in the sponsoring communities of Ferndale, Pleasant Ridge, Royal Oak, Huntington Woods, Berkley, Birmingham, Bloomfield Township, Bloomfield Hills, and Pontiac.
And there's no better place for Chevy's latest performance icon to make
an appearance than right in its own backyard on Woodward Avenue as
General Motors will kick off its Woodward Dream Cruise activities with
a special private appearance to the media of the latest model of the
all-American icon--the 2009 Corvette ZR1! Between now and August 16,
car enthusiasts can visit dreamcruise.gmnext.com
to see the GM Century Cruise vehicles and cast your vote to choose the
"Top Cruiser" by texting the number of your favorite vehicle to 466398
On Friday night, August 15 at 6:00 p.m., the first annual NextCruise kicks off in Pleasant Ridge at 23925 Woodward Ave. and will showcase the 'Lean, Mean and Green' technologies and vehicles of nine automakers. GM vehicles either on display or available for Ride-and-Drive will include the E85 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Pace Car, Chevrolet Equinox Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle, Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid, Cadillac Escalade Hybrid, and the Saturn Vue Two-Mode Hybrid. Assorted GM executives and subject matter experts will be available for interviews, including among others Bob Kruse, executive director of Global Vehicle Engineering for Hybrids, Electric Vehicles and Batteries.
General Motors' festivities continue Saturday, August 16, at 7:30 a.m. EDT, when the GM Heritage Center presents the GM Century Cruise, led by a concept Corvette Z06 powered by E85 ethanol and driven by GM Chairman and CEO Rick Wagoner. More than 100 classic GM vehicles will cruise from the GM Global Headquarters at the Renaissance Center up Woodward Avenue to the heart of the Woodward Dream Cruise in Royal Oak, Birmingham, and the surrounding suburbs. The event begins on Saturday, August 16, at 6:30 a.m. when GM Century Cruise vehicles assemble in Lot D1 (east of the Renaissance Center at St. Antoine and Atwater).
At 7:30 a.m., these 100 classic GM vehicles will depart the GM Global Headquarters at the Renaissance Center and proceed up Woodward to the heart of the Dream Cruise in Royal Oak, Birmingham, and the surrounding suburbs.
The caravan is expected to pass the following locations at these approximate times:
7:40 a.m. - Comerica Park
8:15 a.m. - Ferndale
7:50 a.m. - Wayne State University / DIA area
8:25 a.m. - 13 Mile / Woodward
8:10 a.m. - Palmer Park area
8:35 a.m. - Woodward / Maple Rd.
Finally, NextCruise 2008 displays will open in Pleasant Ridge at 23925 Woodward Ave. at 9:00 a.m.
Between 8:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m., GM will begin its second century with a partnership with Leader Dogs for the Blind by sponsoring the training of Future Leader Dog, General. General is a golden retriever puppy that will begin his Leader Dog training when he turns a year old; once he completes the program, General will go to someone who is blind in Southeast Michigan. General will be available for photos and autographs for the public between 8:00 a.m. and noon at Athens Coney Island.
Ridemakerz, the first-ever car customizing experience for kids ages 6 to 106, will help make car enthusiasts' dreams come true by hosting legendary car customizer and host of TLC's Overhaulin', Chip Foose, to the Dream Cruise. Foose will sign autographs on the Main Stage at the Eaton Performance Park on Woodward Ave. on Friday, August 15, from 6-8 p.m., and Saturday, August 16, from 9 a.m.-12 p.m., 2-5 p.m. and 6-9 p.m. In addition, to help commemorate the 14th annual Woodward Dream Cruise, Foose will debut a special Ridemakerz Dream Collection, a first-of-its-kind collection of 14 different Ridez personally customized by Foose himself. When event attendees purchase a special 2008 Woodward Edition RZ Rod (signed and numbered by Chip Foose) for $50 - or any other Ridemakerz Ridez at the Ridemakerz booths or other Detroit-area shops (while supplies last), the company will donate one dollar for each toy car purchased to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metropolitan Detroit.
For the first time, Woodward will team with American Concours Foundation (ACF) to auction some of the country's top hot rods and classic cruisin' cars on eBay. The ACF is facilitating the online auction, with automotive classics available for bid via the eBay Motors website to raise money for the police and firefighters funds from the Dream Cruise's nine host communities. A selection of cars will be on display during the Cruise, Saturday August 16, 2008, at the Woodward "Dream Show" event at Northwood Shopping Center (Woodward and 13 Mile Road) in Royal Oak, Michigan, though the auction actually continues throughout the month of August of 2009.
If you're planning to attend Detroit's iconic Woodward Dream Cruise, be sure to participate in some of these amazing celebratory events!