Free: Space Age Cars Roll for Downey - NBC Southern California

Free: Space Age Cars Roll for Downey

Bob's Big Boy Broiler hosts the Cosmic Car Classic.



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    Fans the world over fancy those big fin-rocking cars made during the Space Race. See a few vroom-vroom beauties at the Cosmic Car Classic at Bob's Big Boy Broiler in Downey on April 8. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)

    It's hard to have a truly passionate discussion about automobiles that were built in the time of the Apollo missions without making ginormous hand gestures.

    You have to raise your hand way, way up to show how big a tail fin is, and you have to round your fingers to mimic the pointy, conical lights synonymous with many a boat-sized car of the era.

    And, of course, you have to open your arms and embrace, proverbially, any large event that loves on the road-worthy dream machines created during a time when everyone gazed at the moon, dreaming of rockets, thrust, and lift-off.

    Columbia Memorial Space Center in Downey is a fan of both space travel and the earthbound cars it inspired. With that in mind, the center hosting, along with that Downey classic Bob's Big Boy Broiler, a night of stylish car lookie-loo-ing on Wednesday, April 8 at Bob's (which is about a ten-minute toodle, give or take, from the center).

    The name of the engine-strong gathering? The Cosmic Car Classic. The reason for the gathering? It is part of the City of STEM Science Festival, which is raging, brainily and with bravado, at the center through April 11. 

    The cost of the gassed-up gathering? Zero, nada, nothing, just show up and look at vintage cars that have mondo presence. 

    "Cars of the Apollo Era" is the evening's subtitle, so, yeah: You're going to see some sloped glass and rocket-like lighting and details that summon the idea of capsule drifting high above the earth.

    Alternative fuels and tech are also themes, this being a STEM-focused event. So basically if you're a car buff, in all the ways, of yesterday's machines and what tomorrow and the magnificent future may bring, doing Downey on April 8.

    Is it far out? In theory and spirit, yes, but thank goodness Downey is not too far, nor out, time-wise or distance-wise, at all. Plus: Bob's. Plus: Burgers and fries. Plus: Machines that look like they just might go galactic, given half a chance, with those giant rear fins and curves and all.