Thursday, August 5, 2010

Petersen Auto Museum and Wally Parks NHRA Museum

Today was our first full day in Los Angeles and we spent the day visiting the Petersen Automotive Museum and the Wally Parks NHRA Museum. After having breakfast at the diner in our hotel, we headed out to the Petersen Automotive Museum on Wilshire Boulevard. The Petersen is a multi level museum with over 300,000 square feet of display space. The museum even includes a couple of cool displays in the carpark to get you started. We spent a couple of hours here checking out all the cars on display and then headed on to the next stop of the day.

Ed 'Big Daddy' Roth's 'Outlaw' on display at the Petersen Museum

The next stop was the Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum, all the way over the other side of town at the Pomona Fairplex. The Wally Parks houses displays from a number of motorsports disciplines, including drag racing, land speed racing and road racing. If that doesn't sound good enough already, the first Wednesday of the month, the Wally Parks hosts a cruise in for local hot rodders and customisers, with around 500 cars dropping in to the front carpark over the afternoon and evening.

A bit of a teaser for the upcoming SpeedWeek, the Wally Parks museum had a number of salt flat racers on display

We also caught up with some of the Cranksters, who were in Los Angeles until this evening, heading straight from the Wally Parks to the airport to fly out to Louisville. We'll catch up with them again before the trip is over. When we pulled out of the Wally Parks carpark, we headed over to nearby San Dimas to check out the Circle K that featured in Bill and Teds Excellent Adventure.

I'm a sucker for the bright neon lights

We then decided to head back to the hotel for the night, with the intention of stopping somewhere along the way for dinner. After pulling off the interstate and taking some of the suburban roads for a bit of variety on the way home, we managed to make it all the way back to the hotel without passing anything that really grabbed our attention, so we parked the Cadillac in the carpark, put all our gear back in the room and walked across the road to get some Mexican food for dinner. While waiting for our dinner I wandered a little way down the road to grab a few photos of some neon signs, then we headed back to our rooms to eat dinner and discuss our plans for tomorrow, while I made a start on sorting the days photos.

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