By: Lorrie Ward | Category: In Our Communities | Issue: June 2012
Claremore firefighters Chris Hayes and Jimmy Hamilton with vehicles to be featured at Hotrods and Heroes.
Highway 66 has long been known as the “Mother Road,” an arterial highway link that still pumps lifeblood through traditional American towns. Claremore, Oklahoma was built right on the heart of this highway, and so it seems especially appropriate that Claremore firefighters should inaugurate a new and exciting event this year for vehicles that have surely traveled many miles on that very highway – the Hotrods and Heroes Car Show and Poker Run. Scheduled for Saturday, June 23, this event will be packed with fun sights, sounds and activities for the whole family, including a vintage car and motorcycle show, live music by the Brent Giddens Band, and great tasting concessions from BigFoot BBQ.
Trophies will be awarded in 20 car and bike categories, and every registrant will receive a free T-shirt. The first 150 registrations will also receive free dash plaques. The Poker Run will run from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. , is open to all vehicles, and will consist of five stop points – Old 33 Icehouse, Rt. 66 Sports Bar, Grey Beards, The Dam Saloon, and the Claremore Expo Center, where participants pick up their cards and where a $5 extra card will be available at the last spot. Donations will also be accepted at all stops.
Prizes will be awarded to the first and second place hands, with a “last chance drawing” for $50. To preregister for the event at a lower fee, visit www.claremorefirefighters.com. You may download the forms at the site and register on the day of the event, email them to eat0@eau0eav0eaw0, or mail them to P.O. Box 1813, Claremore, OK 74018.
Proceeds from Hotrods and Heroes go to the Claremore Firefighters Activity Fund. Claremore’s firefighter union has long donated to local causes, events and organizations, including the Fishing Derby, Special Olympics Softball Team, Relay for Life, MS 150, and the Burn Camp, which is held each year at Dry Gulch for kids who are burn victims. Burn Camp is the biggest donation focus of the Claremore Firefighters Activity Fund. In fact, there will be a special trophy awarded this year: the Burn Camp Kid Favorite. The trophy itself is being created by Claremore firefighter Jimmy Hamilton and will consist of a half helmet on a plaque, custom to this occasion.
In order to be able to afford to continue their strong support for the Burn Camp and other causes, the Claremore firefighters realized it was time to do something bigger than they had in past years. “Last year we sold cookbooks made up of 360 or so recipes from firefighters and their families,” says Claremore firefighter Chris Hayes. “We raised about $4,500, and the cookbook is still available around town. But we felt we needed to start an event we could continue every year.” Since Chris rides motorcycles and a couple of the other firefighters are members of the Route 66 Cruisers (a vintage car club), they decided to put on a car show and poker run.
“We are already getting a lot of response,” Chris relates. “I think this is the start of something that could successfully go on for many years.”