King of the Streets Brings Car Enthusiasts Together at Fort Mason

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Stereos were bumpin’, wheels were spinnin’, chrome was shinin’ and Fort Mason was (literally) hoppin’ at ‘King of the Streets’ this past Sunday.

The event started at the Mission YMCA at noon with over 300 lowriders, classic cars and bikes participating in the cruise towards Fort Mason. Once there, the car show officially began as drivers parked their candy-colored, tricked out rides. The real event, however, didn’t get underway until 3 with the hopping contest where over 40 cars competed for the ‘King of the Streets’ title and bragging rights.

Now to drop some history: Following WWII lowrider culture was embraced primarily by Mexican-Americans in SoCal. While mainstream car enthusiasts were all about hot rods that were loud and fast, the lowrider culture was all about style and class, and keepin’ it low and slow. Law enforcement naturally didn’t take well to this new subculture and found creative ways to put pressure on the community.

Ride height laws passed in the state in the late 50s and as a way to avoid getting cited lowrider owners began installing hydraulic suspensions in their cars. This allowed their rides to maintain their cool low stance but gave owners a way to quickly raise the cars to a legal height whenever 5-0 came ‘round. It was soon discovered that if you raised the suspension really fast your lowrider would hop; thus beginning another subculture. But enough about the history, let’s check out the cars.

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Check out this footage of some of the hopping in action- including a 7 car hop starting at around 5:00! Until next year!!


Written and photographed by Jenifer KefferGet cultured and stay in the know with our up-to-date events calendar! Did we miss something in your neighborhood? You gotta let us know, we’d love to hear about it.