As 2013 comes to a close, it’s time for the annual look at the top ten most popular stories of the year here on Hover Motor Company according to Google Analytics. I actually went to nearly 100 events this year, so the ones that turn up on here were especially popular. I was also happy to see that one of my history pieces turned up on the list. And for our new car fans, an auto review even cracked the top ten. I had a great time putting all of these stories together, and the numbers show that you guys are really supporting the site. Thanks for everything you do, and I hope you stay with us in 2014.
2013 Greaserama. No suspense here, I’ll just give you the biggest story first. In 2013, Greaserama moved from the Boulevard Drive-In to the Platte County Fairgrounds. Some of the grungy edge was gone, but the facilities were cleaner, there was more room, and it was just an overall better event. This show is getting popular enough now that more out-of-town cars are turning up. Even the quality of cars was better than before. Add all of this with the fact that Goodguys, which had normally been on the same weekend, was cancelled, and you had a recipe for a huge show.
2013 KKOA Leadsled Spectacular. This was a little more involved than some of the stories I put together here, because Dad and I went to Salina, Kan., to cover this one. It was worth it, though. This show had one of the biggest collections of traditional Kustom cars we’ve seen in a long time. There were plenty of familiar Kansas City-area cars, but they were joined by others from all over the country. Legendary builders like Larry Watson were there putting on clinics. Magazine cover cars were parked right on the same streets as local cruisers. We need to try and make this a regular stop, because there aren’t many places to see this many awe-inspiring cars all in one place.
History of the Chevrolet Monte Carlo. I have written several of these history pieces, and they usually aren’t the most popular things on here. I like them, though, because I think they add some depth to the cars you see at car shows, and I usually learn something putting them together. This story ended up getting linked on a couple of other popular websites, pushing the page views through the roof. I’m very happy it did, because I love it when these types of stories are successful. Plus, I’m a big Monte Carlo fan, and it took forever to compile the slideshow from all the old car show pictures.
53rd-Annual World of Wheels. This story is big every year, because it typically marks the beginning of the car show season in Kansas City. I love going to this show, because after several months of being cooped-up with no cars to look at, it really hits the spot. The World of Wheels is a big-time show, so you not only get local cars, but also TV cars, SEMA vehicles, and even celebrities. Where else are you going to see the anthology of the Batmobile, the Family Truckster, an electric-powered Bigfoot monster truck, and Chip Foose-built customs all in one place? I’m already looking forward to the next World of Wheels!
2013 Old Marais River Run. Everybody that’s anybody makes it to Ottawa, Kan., for the Old Marais River Run in September. This year, my dad and I left my old truck at home and cruised down in his ’61 Corvette. That illustrates an important point about this show. Yes, it was originally designed as a custom/hot rod car event, but there are also some very nice restored and original classics and muscle cars there. I love a variety of old cars, so I was like a kid in a candy store at this event. If you’re into old cars at all, any type of old cars, and you live within 100 miles of Forrest Park, there is no excuse not to attend this show at least once. Around here, it is one of the best.
6. 2013 Midwest All-Truck Nationals. It’s easy to see why I would like this show. It is the premiere truck gathering in the Midwest. It is less than 10 miles from my house. And I actually own an old truck. But I’m not the only one that likes this show. Of all the car-related events that I have seen at the E.H. Young Riverfront Park in Riverside, Mo., this is by far the best-attended. The Truck Nat’s spread over three days, and trucks come from all over the United States. Sometimes it amazes me how far some of these people are willing to drive to be here. But they do it because it is a fun show, truck people are inherently pleasant to be around, and the Genuine Chevy/GMC Truck Club does a great job of putting this together.
7. May, 2013 West Bottoms Car Show. This show was kind of a surprise. It was on my dad’s birthday, and we had already hit three or four car shows that day. Just as we were about to wrap things up, we decided to swing by the West Bottoms and see if anyone was there. And boy, were they. This show really was huge. There were cars under the 12th Street Bridge, in front of the haunted houses, and up and down all the side streets. Not only that, but pinup girls and people in zombie costumes gave this event a fun and unusual personality. They staged another one of these events later in the year, and in spite of an intense rainstorm, it was still pretty strong. But this first one was really something.
8. 2013 KCI Airport Cruise. Of all the events that have the word “cruise” in the title, this one is usually the biggest around here. The Wireco building has a nice, big parking lot, with a nice pleasant fountain, and lots of room to spread out. But much of this show’s success goes to the efforts of Joe McBride and his team with the Kansas City International Airport. They do a great job promoting it, and the door prizes are the best in town. Heaven help any other local shows or cruises that schedule an event on the same night as this one, because this is where everyone’s going to be.
9. 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit Review. I am very fortunate to have the opportunity to work with several new vehicle manufacturers here at Hover Motor Company. This year, I’ve driven everything from a 2014 Camaro SS convertible, to a Fiat 500 Abarth convertible, to a Ford Fiesta ST, to the new Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra. And these reviews always seem to pull in the readers. But the most popular review this year goes to the 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee. I can see why, too. Who wouldn’t be interested in an ultra-luxurious SUV with a big HEMI V8 under the hood? Being able to combine old car events, which I love, with new car information, which I also love, helps make Hover Motor Company one of the most well-rounded automotive destinations around.
10. August, 2013 Parkville Cruise. I live so close to this cruise that I can almost coast down the hill and park in the lot. That’s why I think it’s neat to see it in the top ten. On this particular night, there were so many cars that they ran out of parking spaces. When you get that kind of participation, you get big page views because people come here to find pictures of their car. To give you an idea of how popular this event was, I also went to cruises in Independence, Overland Park, Lenexa, Shawnee, North Kansas City, Platte City, Gladstone, Kansas City, and many other places, and none of them garnered enough views to hit the top ten. Keep it up, Parkville Main Street Association, you’re doing a good job.
And there you have it, the top ten most popular stories on Hover Motor Company in 2013. I am obviously not finishing this one off with the usual photo slideshow, but every one of those links above contains one. Check them all out to relive some of the biggest events of the year.