Triple XXX Rootbeer Drive-in launches annual round of popular car shows

February 14, 2012

By Tom Corrigan

Cars like this Chevrolet Chevelle SS populate the Triple XXX’s shows throughout the summer. The first show of the year is Feb. 19. File

A local tradition for 13 years, the 2012 round of car shows at the Triple XXX Rootbeer Drive-in begins Feb. 19 with the sixth annual Swedish Car Cruise-In.

There is another show in March. And beginning in early April, shows are scheduled for almost every weekend through October. Looking way ahead, a December event is the 11th annual Jingle Bell Cruz for Toys for Tots.

All in all, there are more than 30 car events planned for the coming months, said Triple XXX Drive-in owner José Enciso Sr. If a show drops off the schedule, he said, he has a list of groups who quickly will fill the spot.

“The hot rodders who have been here for years are there,” he said regarding the show schedule.

The Swedish Car Cruise-In is sponsored by the Puget Sound Chapter of Volvo Sports America and is from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

If you go

Swedish Car Cruise-In

The Triple XXX and car shows started going together in a big way in 2000, when the Northwest Classic Chevy Club held its first show at the Issaquah landmark. The show was and is different from most other shows in that it concentrates on three years of classic cars: 1955-57.

The first NWCCC show was in June 2000, said Bud Worley, club ambassador. It rained. Still, the show returned to Issaquah the following year, moved to the third Saturday in August. It has been held that day every year since.

The first NWCCC show attracted about 30 or so cars, according to Worley. It has grown since then.

“It just kind of evolved,” he said.

Enciso agreed.

“It snowballed to where it is now,” he said.

At one point, Worley said the NWCCC set a world’s record for the largest show limited to the so-called “Tri-5” model years with about 300 cars. Last year’s numbers were down a bit to about 150, Worley admitted. But that number is still more than respectable for a show with limited model years, he said.

Worley had nothing but praise for Enciso, who he said does a great deal of work promoting the NWCCC show and others. For his part, Enciso wanted to thank the city, local police and his neighbors, who let him use their parking lots for fundraisers on Sundays.

“Everybody has been helpful and nice,” he said.

While the NWCCC set a world’s record, Enciso also set a record for the most car shows in one location.

Enciso himself has an apparently notable collection of old-time Chevy trucks on his farm in Maple Valley. Sponsored by Chevrolet, New York filmmakers Florentine Films visited Enciso’s farm last summer. Enciso and his collection became part of a documentary, “Chevy 100: An American Story.” The film unit also showed up at the Triple XXX, according to Worley, who said Enciso was able to bring together more than 20 rare Chevy Nomads for the benefit of the film crew.

“Chevy 100” has aired on the Velocity cable channel. Chevy formally marked 100 years in business on Nov. 11. A Chevy calendar features three of Enciso’s vehicles.

Tom Corrigan: 392-6434, ext. 241, or tcorrigan@isspress.com. Comment at www.issaquahpress.com.

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