Vintage Volkswagen Show and Art at La Bodega Gallery

I’ve Always Loved a Beautiful Volkswagen, Haven’t You?

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“Want to go check out some cool vintage VWs today? There’s a Volkswagen show at La Bodega Gallery.”
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Hell, yeah, I do! I paid for part of my college education flipping old Volkswagen Beetles, fixing them up a bit and selling them for a small profit. Most of what I’d worked on needed new batteries, spark plugs, the things you’d expect from leaving a vehicle sitting for too long; nothing too major, repairs I could handle on my own or with a little guidance.

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Finding the cars was the fun part; I’d ride around the alleys of El Cajon Valley standing up in a buddy’s truck bed, and when I’d see a Bug with weeds growing up around it, I’d knock on the door and offer a couple of hundred bucks for the car. It was amazing how often a sale would be made on the spot, sometimes for a single-owner vehicle in decent shape.

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Those days are long over. The secret is out; vintage Volkswagens are universally loved and cherished. Even the chirpy sound of the exhaust is enough to turn heads.

Rusty (ahem, “patinaed”) or fully restored, take your pick. Good thing that rust is not a crime, right?

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My general opinion is that stock is better, but I’m sure you can see that this gun-mounted Beetle, owned by Hando, Instagram @h_a_n_d_o_v_w) is right up my alley. Remember my Vespa P200, the one with the guns attached? If not, here’s the background on it. I’m sure it makes sense that this VW was my fave at the show.

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Having said that, it’s hard not to have fallen in love with this gorgeous Type 3 specimen, a right-hand drive import from the Australian market.

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In my youth, I’d not been that familiar with Type 2 Volkswagens, the campers, buses, vans, transports. Recently I’ve had the opportunity to experience the utter joy of bus camping. Volkswagen did an amazing job of space planning, with room for everything you need and a flexible living space that convers easily. I’m sure most VW enthusiasts have known this forever, but I’m new to the amazement and have a new appreciation for the interior spaces and gorgeous restorations.

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Ben and I saw this beauty at the Big Three Parts Exchange a few months ago, too.

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It was great to get another look at this Volkswagen after a recent bus camping trip of my own; it really is the perfect vintage vacation vehicle.

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And this gorgeous vintage VW Tranporter, restored with such a keen eye for detail.

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My favorite Volkswagens will always be the Beetles, though; their frivolity is an instant lift. Check out this sunny breath from Tony (Instagram @rootshead).

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In the gallery itself, , Michelle “Green Eyes” Rubano (Instagram @michigreeneyes) was spinning in style, surrounded by Volkswagen-inspired art from local artists.

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Don’t forget to check out La Bodega Gallery and Studios; they host vibrant events, infusing Bario Logan with energy and music as well as visual treats.

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San Diego Air Cooled, a fabulous VW club full of friendly enthusiasts has regular meetings every Tuesday evening at the Rally’s hamburger stand in Chula Vista (click here for details). I highly recommend going out and meeting everyone; their cars are amazing, and their friendliness and enthusiasm is dazzling. You’ll have a wonderful time.

The Aircooled Nomads frequently show off their collections, as well, and they can be followed on Instagram.

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What’s your history with VWs? Please let me know in the comments below!

 

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6 Responses

  1. steve b says:

    That’s an awesome blog! Thanks for the shout outs and the love shown towards are cars 🙂

  2. Raven says:

    Absolutely! We had a great time meeting all of you and checking out your awesome clubs. Thank you!

  3. Good article. I’m impressed that you worked on Beetles to sale in order to help pay for college! Keep writing : )

  4. Awesome article…. I’ve always wanted to own one of the classic beetles. I once saw a sky blue convertible beetle, with a tan top and seats!!! I was gorgeous!

  5. Dave L. says:

    Heh heh, very cool collection of vintage VW’s! I went to the Bug-a-rama in Las Vegas, NV back in 2007, and it was a blast. I drove my ’71 Beetle up there and back to western New Mexico where I live, and then with all the incentive I got while I was there, I proceeded to build a hopped up 1641cc engine for it, and some other internal goodies to make it a little more reliable. They’re fun vehicles, but definitely a ‘tinkers’ car, as you need to do quite a bit to keep them maintained and running well. 🙂

  6. John Lynden says:

    My first VW was a 1977 triple white convertible beetle. Currently traveling on and off in my 1989 2WD westfalia recently moved from Portland Oregon to the San Diego area. Living in MN and escaping when I can. Also in the stable 67 restored beetle, 1990 Syncro Doka and Italjet Dragster. Love your page and IG! Follow @jsweetd IG

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