Old Town Temecula became the apex for off-road enthusiasts Saturday evening, August 9 as Off Road Nights – a dirt lifestyle festival showcasing all aspects of the action sport way of life – came to town. From fashion to food, the festival had virtually everything catering to the whole family for a day of fun.
Setting the tone of the entire event was KCAL 96.7, whose radio booth cranked out classic rock hits throughout the festival. National vendors – including Rockstar Energy drinks and Lucas Oil – were on hand throughout the event. Local vendors such as Zevo Motorsports, Baja Designs, PRP Seats and Undaunted Clothing could also be found on the festival grounds.
Motorcycle Mechanics Institute set up a booth offering information to potential students for its Motorcycle Technician course. A plethora of off road vehicles, including motorcycles, Polaris’s, dune buggies and jeeps, offered those who enjoy the dirt lifestyle an off-road haven.
One car in particular, a class 5 unlimited Baja Bug, seemed to stand out in the crowd of off-road vehicles, vendors and jolly-jumps. The bug – nearly covered in pink breast cancer awareness stickers – is the brainchild of 21-year-old Madison Dormack. A professional driver for the past five years, Dormack gives two pink ribbons for each donation of $5 that are then signed by the donor and displayed on the car.
Dormack then takes all proceeds from the stickers and donates them to Cedars-Sinai, a non-profit hospital and research institute located in Los Angeles, to help end the fight against breast cancer. Dormack’s next appearance is scheduled for September 19 – 21 at the Sand Sports Super Show at the OC Fairgrounds. She will also be participating in the M.O.R.E. Ladies Race Towards a Cure in Barstow, California on October 25.
Another showstopper from the event was Bill and Julianne Kelly’s Desert Challenger. The former military vehicle was built in 1973 as an M-35 A2 – a cargo truck designed by the U.S. Army that carried loads from 5,000 to 10,000 pounds.
The vehicle was privately purchased in the late 90’s, sent to AM General and fully refurbished as an M-35 A3. The Kellys purchased the rig in 2003, removed the ““Conestoga Wagon” back and converted the vehicle into a fully functioning motor home. The couple continues to work on the truck, but doesn’t let that stop them from using it for recreational purposes. They have taken it on trips to Death Valley, Operation Desert Fun, and Haven Trails.
According to Julianne Kelly, the 41-year-old vehicle was built to power through anything thrown into its path. It’s never gotten stuck as long as the couple has owned it.
“Thankfully, not yet,” she said. “And that’s a good thing too; it certainly would not be a fun task to get a 2 and a half ton truck unstuck.”
For information on Bill and Julianne Kelly and their1973 as M-35 A2 send an email to [email protected] For more information regarding Madison Dormack visit www.facebook.com/dormackracing.