Bernie's Car Show Coverage: Bernie's Best of 2021

Mar 9, 2022

Since the 2022 Car Show Season is upon us, I'd figured that I should post my Bernie's Best of 2021. I did post it on my Instagram page in case if you missed it but here goes my entire Best of 2021. 

Even though there's still a pande- I mean- Panasonic going on, I kept true to my word by attending as many shows as I could to make up for 2020. Although I didn't make it to Los Angeles or to my home state of New York, I still was able to go to many cities/states that I've never been to. 

I'm going to start things off with Caffeine and Octane, which happens to be the closest car show to my house, but the hardest car show to get to since it's so early in the morning. Last year, I only made it to the first five shows of the year, due to my being out of town or just getting back into Atlanta. One thing about Caffeine and Octane is that you don't know exactly what is going to show up.

However the first state I traveled to in 2021 was Arizona (for the first time ever might I add) to attend a few of shows. I did get to attend my first Barrett Jackson Auction in their flagship city of Scottsdale. I didn't make a post about it. Barrett Jackson has been on my list of dream car shows for years. I was excited to attend, but once I got there... let's just say the energy just felt off. But I did see a lot of cars that I've never seen before.

The next day, I went to the Arizona Super Show and I had FUN. Oh my goodness, so this show was half indoors and half outdoors. Lowriders from various states (including states that I honestly didn't think that would have lowriders- like Utah) gathered to the State Farm Stadium and I loved every second of it. 

The following day, was a huge staple in the Lowrider Community which was Frank's Custom Hydraulics Car Hop. Since it was my first time in Phoenix, I truly didn't know where exactly I was. 90 minutes after finding out the location (the location isn't announced until the very last minute- maybe two hours before the show is scheduled to start), I pulled into a crowded lot where a young boy, maybe 8 years old, instructed me where to park. Side note: he didn't play about his job for the day, he had the lot ORGANIZED. The larger than usual area for the car hop was located in the center, but around the area was an actual car show AND there were shopping venders and most importantly, there were food venders. Some of the cars were at the Arizona Super Show, but MOST of the cars I've never seen before, which means I had no reason to complain.

I went to Powerfest in Atlanta. It wasn't as good as it was in 2020. Sorry, just being honest.

One of my favorite automotive weekends in Atlanta (and remember, Atlanta doesn't have many of them) is Stuntfest weekend. Stuntfest weekend is really like four days, but I only show up to the last two. So the day before the show is the block party, which was fun. Ironically held across the street from the Mercedes Benz Stadium (the Stuntfest promoter is a Falcons fan), it was packed... to the point where the cops had to shut it down since people were creating they own parking spots to get in.

The very next day after the block party was the Stuntfest Car Show waaaaayyyyy down at the Silver Dollar Race Track. Stuntfest is one of those shows that you definitely do not want to miss. It's literally the show where you would kick yourself if you miss it. Don't say I never warned you....

Thank goodness for Krazy Vatos Car Club for consistently holding great lowrider shows in the metro-Atlanta area. Because the east coast doesn't have as many lowriders compared to all states west of Texas, it's kind of hard to find a good lowrider show. However, people from various states travel to Georgia to be a part of it. Saw some familiar cars but naturally, I also found some cars that I've never seen before- like the Buick Regal above.


Goldrush Rally made their faithful return to the metro Atlanta area... It was smaller due to the Panera Bread, and the stops were far north of the city. I didn't make it to the arrival event but I did drop by their departing event at the Honda Carland dealership in Roswell.

I've done a lot of things in my life, but 2021 was the first time I attended an outdoor car show during a tropical storm. Yes, Whips by Wade held his Certified Summer Car Show during Tropical Storm Claudette. Despite the weather, it was a good turnout.

The Long Island came right out of me at Texas Whipfest, which was my introduction to Dallas car culture. Oh my goodness, I'm not built for the Texas heat. But between running into the bathroom and the rental car for my air conditioning breaks, I found some incredible cars. The majority of these vehicles, maybe about 95% of the cars, I've never seen before. 

A week later, I was back in Atlanta and I attended the car show that my favorite New York DJ that loves cars organized. So I had fun at DJ Envy's Drive Your Dreams car show in Jersey, and this Atlanta show was his first outside the NY/NJ area. Most of the cars I've never seen before, some of the cars were from New York, which means I had no reason to complain. However, I will say this... I hope Envy continues having these shows because he's actually filling a car show niche.  

Later that month, I returned back to Dallas (yes, in the summer) for the Torres Empire Lowrider Show. I've always had fun at the Torres Empire Lowrider Show in Los Angeles, so I'd figured that his show in Dallas would be just as great. Thankfully the show was half inside and half outside. A small percentage of the cars was at the Arizona Super Show, but once again, I had no reason to complain. At the show, I found out that Dallas has a Sunday evening tradition where they cruise down Jefferson Blvd (hence the second photo) and once the show ended, I found myself holding up traffic while getting photos on Jefferson Blvd. 

The following week, I was back in Atlanta for the King of the South show, where I co-judged the show for the second year in the row. I'm really looking forward to the revamping of this year's show because the last block party was insane.

The next city I traveled to for the very first time was St Louis for the STL Summer Showdown. It took me awhile (meaning a couple of years) to make it to this show, but I finally made it. I had a lot of fun... until about 4:30 when a severe thunderstorm forced the show to end early. This show gave me a different view of Midwestern car culture because there were a ton of cars from Missouri and Illinois. But I really hope that this year's show will have better weather.

Another state I've traveled to for the first time was Michigan for the 2021 Battle of the States car show. Even though this show took place in Grand Rapids, it made me realize that... I want to go to Detroit. Grand Rapids was a little too small for me There were a lot of cars that traveled to the show from Detroit, which was about 2.5 hours away.

2021 was the most time I've EVER spent in the midwest, and I had to go back to where it all began... in Indianapolis for Midwest Fest 5. The most amazing thing about this show is that you can go year after year and still see a lot of new vehicles.


The week after the Midwest Fest extravaganza was Whip Addict's Car Show. I loved the location- aside from it being located in downtown Atlanta, but depending on how the cars were parked, you could get a view of the Atlanta skyline. But this show really felt like a family reunion since I ran into a familiar face every couple of steps that I took.

The next day was a show that I haven't been to in years, which was Obsessionfest. Although it was opened to all cars, it was primarily Lowriders, including some that I've never seen before, which is odd because I thought I've seen all of the Lowriders in Georgia.

For the past 11 years (remember 2020 doesn't count since it was virtual), I've been traveling to Las Vegas for the SEMA Show. Even though it was smaller than usual (even smaller than 2010 when I first went) but people always forget that SEMA brings the best of the best when it comes to customized cars. 

Finally ending Bernie's Best of 2021 by attending my very first Florida Classic weekend. Even though it was a three day weekend, Saturday was the best day. I was amazed. So everyone gathered at the Magic Mall or as close to the mall as possible. Cars were parked in the front of the mall, along the side street that was adjacent to the parking lot, illegally along West Colonial Dr, and in front of every business about 6 city blocks wide. And if they still couldn't find a spot, they just held up traffic so everyone could see them. There were just so many cars.

All I will say is that there's more to come in 2022. Where will I be? I can't give any details other than the states that I will travel to are states that I've been to before. Hopefully I will travel to two new cities and three cities that I haven't been to since pre-Panda Express... to see the rest of the photos, check out Bernie's Best of 2021 gallery. Stay tuned. 

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