The World’s Largest One-Day Auto Event
The Woodward Dream Cruise first started 20 years ago as a fund raiser for a Ferndale soccer field. It has become a part of the heart and soul of Detroit. This year’s cruise is expected to draw 1.5 million people to the streets and 50,000 classic cars.
A Little History on the Legendary Woodward Ave.
The cruise will take place along a 16-mile stretch of Woodward Avenue according to Michigan.org. Woodward Avenue is a source of pride for many in the Detroit area.
In 2002, Woodward Avenue became one of America’s 99 National Byways, and the only urban route, according to Michigan.gov. While the cruise only takes place on 16-miles of Detroit’s famed avenue, it actually starts at the Detroit River and continues to Pontiac, Michigan. Michigan.gov reports that “Detroit’s main drag”, has “Nearly every mile of this byway includes historical sites that have shaped the industrial life of our nation.”
Woodward Avenue started as the main road for traveling by the Native Americans. It was known as the Saginaw Trail. Later, it became known as the “corduroy road” after it was planked with wood for wagon travel. Then, followed a road made of gravel, mud, and cedar blocks.
It was in 1909 that the first mile of highway was built in the world on Woodward Avenue between Six Mile and Seven Mile roads in Wayne County.
In 1916, the road to Pontiac became paved.
In 1919, a three-color traffic light emerged. This was the nation’s first three-colored traffic light.
According to Michigan.gov, “the auto industry grew up along Woodward.” Significant highlights include:
- Henry Ford lived only 4 blocks away from Woodward when he built his first car.
- Chrysler founded itself only 3 blocks east of Woodward.
- GM’s Pontiac Line and GMC’s truck and coach lines were all launched in Pontiac, Michigan.
In the 1950s and 1960s, Michigan.gov tells us that “woodwarding” became the “craze.” “Cruisers gathered at drive-in restaurants. Muscle car competition hit its heyday in the mid-1960s.”
For more history, please see, Woodward Avenue: a Road to the Heart and Soul of America.
The Woodward Dream Cruise
The Dream Cruise will extend along 16-miles of the historic avenue. Woodwarddreamcruise.com writes that the cruise will include nine metro-Detroit cities, “Berkley, Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills, Bloomfield Township, Ferndale, Huntington Woods, Pleasant Ridge, Pontiac and Royal Oak.”
The event is free to watch and to cruise in.
The cruise will take place on August, 15, 2015 from 9:00 am – 9:00 pm.
Staying Safe at the Dream Cruise
To stay safe during the Woodward Dream Cruise:
- If you are cruising and not driving a classic car, the event asks you to stay out of the two right lances nearest to the curb.
- The Dream Cruise is an alcohol-free event. It is also a family-oriented one.
- Cruisers must obey all the rules of the road.
- Woodwarddreamcruise.com, informs us that there will be police from each community patrolling on foot, horseback, and in vehicles.
- Remember that Michigan’s Blood Alcohol Limit is .08.
- While many Detroit suburbs have decriminalized marijuana, according to state and federal law, marijuana remains illegal. In addition, anyone caught driving after using marijuana is subject to the same fines as someone who had been caught drinking and driving. Please see, How Much Will Your DUI Cost You, for more information.
The Woodward Dream Cruise is a heart and soul of Detroit event. It is one event you won’t want to miss. If you will attending this year, have a wonderful and safe time.