Congratulations to John Sanders and North Modesto Kiwanis for two big victories securing George Lucas as grand marshal of the next American Graffiti Festival car parade and winning the Modesto Area Music Award for best large event in Modesto.
Both have set up an opportunity to make a quantum improvement to Graffiti Summer in June. The event has always been strong on great cars, but weakest in presenting music from the cruising eras. Can Kiwanis secure the support of a radio station to pay the soundtrack from "American Graffiti" during the parade, with the classic car owners tuning in, real loud, to that station? The whole parade route would come alive with the sound of the movie's oldies, and Lucas would be further honored. In years following, the station could present themes, like rockabilly or car songs.
This past June during and after the parade, a fabulous vocal group, The Sensations, performed great '60s tunes at a venue along the route. We need more live music to build a true downtown Graffiti celebration that fills up at least parade day. How about a street stage for the valley's most famous classic rocker, Roddy Jackson, once with The Merced Blue Notes?