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Gresham about to become Motor City

Gladstone man directs Gresham's Rockin' Round the Block event


As classic car buffs prepare for the annual Rockin’ Round the Block car show on Main Avenue in downtown Gresham, no one may be more excited than Gladstone resident Vern Farris, the event’s director.Photo Credit: JIM CLARK - Vern Farris stands in front of three of the classic cars he owns. The Gladstone man is getting ready to direct Greshams annual Rockin Round the Block classic car cruise-in, Friday and Saturday, Aug. 8-9.

Standing in his driveway with his wife of 52 years, Beverly Farris, the classic car collector — and former destruction derby and hobby stock car driver — expounds on why he spends so much time restoring cars from decades past.

“I love to drive them,” he says as he grins widely. “It’s fun to drive them — everybody looks at them!”

Farris will be among the 500 or so classic car owners expected to descend on downtown for the cruise-in, which is expected to draw between 5,000 and 6,000 folks.

The event, the chief sponsor of which is Weston Buick KIA GMC, takes place from 7-9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 8, when the Olympic Bed Races run on Main Avenue, and from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 9.Photo Credit: JIM CLARK - With his wife, Beverly, Farris stands in his garage, which contains scores and scores of model cars.

In the bed races, teams composed of folks from local businesses compete for pride and to raise money for the Mt. Hood Community College automotive scholarship program.

Saturday’s festivities take place on Main Avenue as well, and include free children’s activities as well as music from Ron Reudi and the Hurricanes.Photo Credit: JIM CLARK - Farris owns this 1939 Chevy Master 85, and had it painted with these flames.

Reudi is a guitarist-singer who in December 1976 in Columbia, Md., played drums, bass and guitar for 29 hours and one minute consecutively, entering the Guinness Book of World Records.

Farris says even if people are not into classic cars, they might want to go to Rockin’ Round the Block because the event may prompt nostalgia among older onlookers who will remember their family’s first car or a first date at a drive-in or even their first rock ‘n’ roll show.Photo Credit: JIM CLARK - Farris holds one of the smallest of the hundreds of model cars he owns. His wife enjoys cars as well, and also collects Elvis Presley and Lucille Ball memorabilia.

“I think a lot of people could get a kick out of this,” he says.

And don’t forget to bring the children and grandchildren, he adds.

“Children like the paint color of the cars and the chrome.”

For more information, contact Vern Farris at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 503-656-3288.



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