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Rainy start to Super Cruise

Along for the Ride kicks off the entertainment on a very wet first night for the Salem Super Cruise, which despite the rain, attracted both cruisers and community members. (Salem News photo by Mary Ann Greier)

Today’s Salem Super Cruise activities:

• Car show, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Donnell Ford

• Arts & Crafts Vendor Show, 2 to 10 p.m., South Broadway

• Bike Show/Night, 4 to 11 p.m., Salem Eagles

• Antique Car Show, 5 to 8 p.m., Centennial Park

Dean Traficant wipes down the hood of a 1964 Chevelle SS owned by Scott Guiler of Salem while Guiler’s son, J.P., and his nephew, Boo Bechara, wipe down Guiler’s 1970 Oldsmobile 442 in the front parking lot of Salem City Hall. (Salem News photo by Mary Ann Greier)

• SOBOS band, 7 to 10 p.m., Broadway Stage

• Route 45 band, 7 to 10 p.m., Donnell Ford Stage

• Cowboy Up band, 7 to 10 p.m., Salem Eagles

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SALEM — Organizers for the Salem Super Cruise planned everything down to the last detail, but Gene Johnson said the one thing they can’t control is the weather.

This 1981 Oldsmobile 442 race car owned by Scott Guiler was purchased new by his father, John, in 1981. Guiler also had a 1969 Chevy Camaro Outlaw racer on display before putting them both back in the trailer due to rain. Both are in the low 7-second in the quarter mile for drag strip racing. (Salem News photo by Mary Ann Greier)

Mother Nature rained on the Super Cruise kickoff Thursday night, scaring off some car owners and antique tractor owners, and delaying Mayor John Berlin saying “Start Your Engines” until tonight.

The wet weather didn’t seem to keep people away, though, as community members armed with umbrellas visited the vendor stands on South Broadway and the municipal lot off of Pershing and South Lundy Avenue.

Johnson’s hoping for better weather today and the rest of the weekend. At one point, the main show lot was nearly empty, but once the rain let up, the cars came, along with the people.

Mick Orosz, who’s in charge of the vendors, said that’s just part of the business.

“You can’t get all perfect days,” he said.

With the rain subsiding, more people start checking out the food stands on South Broadway at the Salem Super Cruise. (Salem News photo by Mary Ann Greier)

The last cruise in 2019 had great weather, then last year was canceled due to the pandemic. For many vendors, he said this was their first event for the summer.

The Salem Super Cruise has 25 vendors in the two main areas, South Broadway and the show lot at Pershing and South Lundy.

He’s hoping for better weather today and Saturday, since that’s traditionally when the bigger crowds show up. There were also some vendors open on East State Street by the Masonic Temple building and some people set up in chairs under overhangs along East State Street downtown watching cars go by.

The band, Along for the Ride, played on the Broadway stage and had an audience.

The consensus was that the weather will be better for the rest of the cruise.

From left, Debbie Orosz, daughter Allison Kiko and grandsons Ross and Rudy await some customers in the main show lot at Pershing and South Lundy. At one point, the lot just about emptied with the heavy rain, but then cars starting coming again. (Salem News photo by Mary Ann Greier)

If the weather permits, the Goodyear blimp is scheduled to fly over this afternoon sometime between noon and 5 p.m. The restored Giant Frostop Mug had been out at Bailey Financial and is expected to be there again tonight and then at the main cruise lot Saturday and Sunday.

Salem Super Cruise organizer Gene Johnson (far left in hat) looks over the nearly empty show lot as a family takes shelter under the tent during a downpour. Pictured are from left Jenna Lyons holding Tyler Lash, 8, Nathan Drushal, Chelsey Lash holding Trevor Lash, 8, and seated, 1-year-old Bentley Felgar. The Start Your Engines kick off was moved to tonight. (Salem News photo by Mary Ann Greier)

A classic Ford leaves the lot as the raindrops fall. (Salem News photo by Mary Ann Greier)

This is a 606 Cubic Inch Big Block Chevy engine in a 1964 Chevelle SS owned by Scott Guiler of Salem. (Salem News photo by Mary Ann Greier)

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