Oakboro Cruise-in and Burn-out
On the fourth Friday of each month the little town of Oakboro roars to life. Cars start arriving at 3 pm and the Big Event starts at 5 pm. What’s going on? Only the largest car club Cruise-in in the state, with over 400 classic and unique cars and over 5,000 spectators. At 9 pm this is followed by the sheer unexplainable fascination of the Burn-out wherein cars with locked brakes spin their tires until they quite literally burn. As they say, it takes all sorts and they can be found by the thousands in Oakboro on these fourth Fridays.
About 4 years ago, Oakboro native Jerry Crayton’s idea for a cruise-in surpassed all expectations when, together with the Greater Oakboro Business Association, the idea became a reality. The event is now the largest in North Carolina. But then Oakboro, with one stop light and a population 1,199, is a can-do town.
Historically, it was a textile community, but when the local Stanly Knitting Mills closed in 1990, downtown dried up. Local investors bought the old buildings, fixed them up and revitalized the town’s heart. Today, nearly 240,000 people annually come to Oakboro for its museums, parks, events like the Cruise-in and Burn-out, bluegrass music, antiques and a specialty shop where one can learn to fly remote planes.
The Cruise-in not only features bumper to bumper classic Mustangs, Camaros and you-name-it, but lots more shiny, pretty old cars with sleek lines. And there’s more. There is musical entertainment. There are food vendors, souvenirs, door prizes and fun photo opportunities.
If you wander over to the Burn-out, be sure to stay behind the line to avoid that burning rubber. And when a tire pops, join in the hootin' and hollering and clapping! It’s all part of the fun.
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