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Five Years & Counting - Hydros & Hot Rods Keep Getting Better

By Bob Rosenberry

Kent, WA - If we were looking for symbolism, it would be hard to improve on the newly restored Miss Bardahl at the entrance of the Hydros and Hot Rods. The Bardahl's significance is two- fold, representing the Northwest's commitment to powerboat racing as well as standing for Seattle's history of industry and innovation. The Bardahl Company, which originally owned and raced the boat, was founded by Norwegian immigrant and Seattle (well, Ballard!) resident Ole Bardahl. It continues in business today, selling its signature oil additive products-still out of Seattle!

It is hard to believe that the 2018 is the fifth year that the Hydroplane and Raceboat Museum has hosted Hydros and Hot Rods. Moreover, it is hard to believe that we have been covering the event since its inception. In our opinion, biased of course, we think the show has gotten better and better.

If Hydros and Hot Rods were only a car show, it would still be great event but opening the Museum for the day makes it really special. Inside, there is memorabilia of all kinds, relics from the early (and later) days of powerboat racing as well as a rotating presence of the boats themselves.

On the day we were there, Slo-Mo-Shun Ill and IV were on hand as was the Pride of Pay-N-Pak plus several of the smaller limited racers. We keep repeating that the Museum is a '"working facility" and it is no less true now than the first time we said. Behind the main "museum" floor is a workshop where the magnificent Unlimiteds are restored to their former greatness.The 1956 Miss Wahoo was the primary shop project for 2018.

Besides the attractions of the Museum and the cool rolling stock outside, the creature comforts of Hydros and Hot Rods include a great, on-site barbecue and non-stop (except for necessary breaks, of course) rock-n-roll by the Superchargers. All in all, this makes for a most relaxing way to spend a Saturday and absorb some true Northwest history. The time is right and the date is set - June 9, 2019 - hope to see you there!

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