Hot Rods and Heels Recap
By: Hella Goode Photos: Mark Kaplan
Hot Rods and Heels, billed the largest pin-up festival in Texas, is an annual event that takes place every May in Dallas. The Lakewood Theater, a historic East Dallas Theater was home to the annual gathering, and while turnout was about the same as last years’ event, the much larger venue allowed for more breathing room than past event, and as one vendor put it — “Thank God — It’s not all assholes and elbows”. [Her colorful way of giving the thumbs up to a larger venue that was less crowded.]
The daytime activities included a car show- which boasted the Lucky 13 car club, as well as individual owners who had caught word of the festival and brought their mint condition hot rods in for the day. The daytime goers seemed to hang out outside with the hot rod show, as opposed to taking advantage of the workshops going on inside the theater; but by the 7pm Model showcase and runway fashion show, which was emceed by Dayna Delux, the entire crowd had filtered inside, and stayed planted for the 23 act burlesque show that followed; although the crowd thinned out a bit towards the end of the night when the show ran much later than the promised 11pm end time.
While staying true to the all Texan line-up that Hot Rods and Heels prides itself on, they did manage to encompass even more Texas cities this year, with performances representing Houston, Corpus Christi, Dallas, Austin, and Denton. The knock-out performances that drove the audience wild and got the loudest applause were Pixie O’ Kneel’s Car Wash Number, Coco Lectric’s Snake Charmer, Rosie Rawhyde’s classic piece, and Nick’s surprise Michael Jackson tribute.
While it was mainly industry types that stuck around for the awards ceremony, the loving energy was almost tangible. Congratulations to Coco Lectric, who took home the Performer of the Year title, Angela Ryan who won Pin-Up Model of the Year, and Austin’s The Jiggle Watts for best troupe. The newcomer category — One to Watch — went to burlesque entertainer Bunny Bailey and Pin-Up model Bondi Holly. Perhaps the largest applause of the night was for the surprise winner — Mark Kaplan of NakedLens.org who took home the Darling of the Year award.
Pegasus News summed up the night as, “The best pin-up show I have ever seen.” And I tend to agree. This is an event not to be missed, and I can’t wait until next year!