Blair Howatt posed with his current vintage vehicle – a 1986 GMC pick-up truck. (Frank Bucholtz/Special to The Star)

Blair Howatt posed with his current vintage vehicle – a 1986 GMC pick-up truck. (Frank Bucholtz/Special to The Star)

LANGLEY GOOD TIMES CRUISE-IN

Cruise-In posters a labour of love for car fanatic

Artist Blair Howatt has loved automobiles since he was a child

Langley Good Times Cruise-In charity car show is coming up. And in advance of the huge community event being held in downtown Aldergrove on Saturday, Sept. 10, the Langley Advance Times has put together a series of stories talking about the people involved and the festivities planned. Stay tuned here, daily, for more about the upcoming Cruise-In.

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By Frank Bucholtz/Special to Aldergrove Star

This year’s Langley Good Times Cruise-In poster features a classic car in front of the old B.C. Telephone Co. office in Aldergrove – which is now home to the Aldergrove museum, run by the Alder Grove Heritage Society.

It couldn’t get more Aldergrove than that.

Since the show relocated to Aldergrove from Langley City, the town has embraced it and Cruise-In volunteers definitely appreciate that warm welcome.

Artist Blair Howatt, a Walnut Grove resident who has been doing the Cruise-In posters since 2005, felt the welcome as well and determined to give this year’s poster an Aldergrove feel.

Howatt loves being part of Cruise-In each year. His posters are collectors’ items, and are used as the basis of each year’s T-shirt, as well.

RELATED: Popular burger chain is literally in and out of Canada just for Langley’s car show

He is a car enthusiast who currently is devoting his efforts to a 1986 GMC Sierra square box pickup. He has had many muscle cars in the past, Mustangs, Malibus and Monte Carlos, and has a soft spot for them, as well.

“I like to buy vehicles that are in good shape, but there is always something wrong. I want to personalize them, and with this truck, I have added some new wheels,” he noted.

“I’m not a mechanic, but I do trade my art for mechanical help.”

He is both flattered and amazed by the reaction he gets from people about the posters.

Many ask him to sign them, and tell him that they have every one of them.

Cruise-In is known for attracting people back again and again, and that reaction to the posters is pretty good testimony about its continued popularity with car show visitors.

Howatt has a thriving art business that he operates on the side, as he holds down a regular job, too. His art business has been growing, and the COVID-19 restrictions helped it even more.

“A lot of it is car-related,” he explained. “I do a lot of caricatures and cartoons, and I have a lot of repeat customers.

He almost always has projects on the go, and when The Star spoke with him, he had finally cleaned up a backlog of art work.

“I feel satisfied when I have done a project. It can be a lot of work, and making deadlines adds pressure, but it is enjoyable.”

Cruise-In is very important to him.

“The show has always been close to my heart,” he shared. “I am friends with a lot of people who are involved with it, and I’m a car fanatic. It’s a passion, I guess. I have loved cars since I was five or six years old.”

More information and pre-registration available on the Langley Good Times Cruise-In website.

READ MORE: Jimmy Shine will be back in-person at the Langley Good Times Cruise-In

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Have a story tip? Email: roxanne.hooper@langleyadvancetimes.com

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Blair Howatt, in his studio, worked on another car sketch. He’s turned his love of cars into Cruise-In art. (Frank Bucholtz/Special to The Star)

Blair Howatt, in his studio, worked on another car sketch. He’s turned his love of cars into Cruise-In art. (Frank Bucholtz/Special to The Star)

Blair Howatt showed off the 2022 Cruise-In poster that he designed. (Frank Bucholtz/Special to The Star)

Blair Howatt showed off the 2022 Cruise-In poster that he designed. (Frank Bucholtz/Special to The Star)

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