Woodward Cruise

Good times were rolling at the 2011 Woodward Dream Cruise—a look at the top, cruise-day headlines.

There’s something to be said for the old adage “No news is good news,” especially surrounding an event like the Woodward Dream Cruise.

In past years, mainstream news reports were preoccupied with a handful of Detroit residents and town officials along Woodward Avenue who were fed up with the traffic jams and crowds. The press seemed to almost breathlessly report on sporadic complaints of tire squealing, drag racing, and the number of arrests, while stories about the fun, the great cars on display, and the millions of tourist dollars the cruise brings annually to Detroit were relegated to the back page.

Earlier this year—thanks to the efforts of the Historic Vehicle Association and Senator Mike Kowall—the Michigan State Senate approved a resolution to honor the Woodward Dream Cruise and commemorate August 2011 as Automotive Heritage Month. There’s no way of telling if this recognition translated into any positive changes in the atmosphere surrounding cruise day. But, looking back, the only bad news from the weekend came in the form of a severe thunder storm that stalled festivities four hours before its official close. (The Detroit News)

Celebrity Watch

Musician Kid Rock and spiky-haired celebrity chef and Minute to Win It host Guy Fieri showed up to film an upcoming Food Network episode of “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives.” In true Woodward Dream Cruise style, Mlive.com reported that both celebrities arrived at Clarkson Union restaurant driving classic rides of their own—Kid Rock in a 1967 Lincoln Continental and Fieri behind the wheel of a red, 1968 Camaro SS.

Few Arrests

The Detroit News reported that—despite a Saturday crowd totaling over 1.1 million—only a dozen arrests were made along the route between Ferndale and Pontiac, where police issued nearly 200 tickets. Offensives ranged from drinking and driving and driving with open intoxicants in the car to citations for careless driving and no proof of insurance.

Classic Theft

One car theft was also reported just hours before the cruise kicked-off, according to a story in the Detroit Free Press. But this one came with a happy ending. According to the story, the Pennsylvania man whose 1959 Cadillac and trailer were stolen from the parking lot of a Wixom hotel got a personal call from Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson after the Caddy was recovered that same day with minor dings and scratches. Patterson apologized on the behalf of the city and offered $1,000 to cover damage to the classic car.