A 1969 candy-apple-red Chevrolet Impala low-rider with gold rims and orange interior welcomed guests as they entered the 13th annual LowLow Car Show Sept. 29 near campus.
It was the “Selena film car.”
“Can I get in and take a picture?” a man asked the car’s owner, Lewis Sevilla.
Sevilla shook his head: “If you get in, everyone else will want to get in.”
The owners of more than 200 low-riders, trucks and SUVs gathered at the car show at the Southside Expo Hall and Pavilion on Pleasanton Road.
Sevilla, owner of Red Live Entertainment and the event’s creator, said the car appeared in the 1997 movie about the late singer known as the Queen of Tejano music. It co-starred in the “Anything for Selenas” scene where fans in the low-rider tried to pull Big Bertha out of a ditch and tore off the back bumper.
Sevilla said he created the event to bring culture to the neighborhood twice a year, in the fall and spring.
“I think it brings the community together, especially in the Southside — it’s reasonably priced and I give a lot of tickets away anyway,” he said.
Sevilla said he’s been into low-riders since he was a kid and auditioned his car for the “Selena” film.
“I had it during the film and have been the owner since 1995,” he said.
The car show had activities including a barber battle, B-Boy battle, live concert, a hydraulic contest, Ms. Lowlow and bikini contest.
People enjoyed aguas frescas, corn in a cup, Frito pie, funnel cake and fruit cups while looking at low-riders showcasing their upgrades.
Manuell and Elizabeth Ortiz, second place winners in what they called the “mild import” lowrider competition, enjoyed the live concert, dancing with their trophy in hand.
“It feels real good because I put two vehicles in,” said Manuell Ortiz. “One for me and one for my wife and she’s the one that won today, but since I put my time into it, I get to enjoy it with her.”
Elizabeth Ortiz said she’s from a different side of town and events like these are what bring the different communities together.
“It turned out good. There were no fights, there was nothing like that, everyone was professional and that’s what’s good because the Southside used to be different,” she said.
Sevilla said the top prize was $500 and with all of the contests and competitions together he gave away $5,000 in cash prizes. He also gave about $3,000 worth of awards and trophies. Model Misty Gonzales, who also goes by Miss Misty, said the event has so much going on that is exciting and attention grabbing.
“There are a lot of car enthusiasts out there that look for things like this, so it doesn’t matter what you are, what’s your race, what you feel or anything like that,” she said. “You get brought together and everybody can enjoy something that they all love.”
The Crazy Pimps, The Garcia Brothers, Lil Keke and other local musical artists were a part of the lineup at the event.
Mexican rapper Ms Krazie said she came from Los Angeles and thinks it’s wonderful to see the car show scene still active and alive.
“I think this is a positive impact. It brings togetherness and you see it’s a place where you can go with your family, including your kids,” she said. “It’s just a positive environment.”
Dalyn Morris, CEO of Wavers @ Heart, said he came from Houston to sell his custom barber aprons, compression caps, do-rags, hair ties and anything dealing with hair.
“It’s really diverse; like I said you got the low riders, then people cutting hair, dancing, you’re bringing the food out, so all of the people are coming together and I love that, so I’m all about that,” he said.
Sevilla said the next event will be the 19th Annual Lowlow Carshow March 29, 2020.