Photo Gallery | First Coast Gears: Local Architect has had this 1978 TransAm Since Day 1 | SLIDESHOW

Although not dubbed a "show," last Saturday's Sunshine State Chevelles cruise-in certainly ranked up there with some of the best.

As dusk fell, the parade of cars at the Krystal at 87015 Merrill Road looked like a scene out of "American Graffiti," with classics jammed packed into the Merrill Station Shopping Center parking lot.


Among them was John Fischer's 1978 Pontiac Firebird TransAm.  His Pontiac is pristine and yes, he's the original owner, proudly showing off the window sticker from the old Wilson Pontiac that used to be on Cassat Avenue.


Fischer, who is a Jacksonville architect, says he thought about selling his un-restored TransAm several times over the years but ultimately decided to hang onto it and is glad he did.  At one point a dealer offered him about $900, showing how out of favor his muscle car had become.  But as the years went by Fischer says the TransAm became cool again, with the kids begging him to drive them to school in it.

Fischer opted against the screaming chicken decal package that was so popular on TransAms in the late-seventies.  The decals were removed by the dealer before the purchase.  Today he says the paint is still about 75 percent original, with only some touch up work done.  He's got the L78 6.6 liter engine with the 3-Speed Turbo 350 automatic and factory "snowflake" 8-inch aluminum wheels.

The only non-stock items are a FlowMaster dual exhaust and high-torque starter.  He proudly notes even the clock still works, proving time has been good to Fischer's pride and joy.

Hot Rodding for Heroes

From the St. Johns Sheriff's Office: On February 11, 2012, the Alachua County Sheriff’s Office will be conducting an escort for Hot Rodding for Hereos event. During this escort from 9am to 11am. There may be traffic delays in the city limits of Gainesville, and Alachua County. 

The escort will take place along the following route: Santa Fe College on NW 83rd Street to NW 39th Avenue County Road 241 to Millhopper Road Millhopper Road to NW 43rd Street NW 43rd Street to NW 39th Avenue NW 39th Avenue to NW 6th Street NW 6th Street to NW 8th Avenue NW 8th Avenue to Newberry Road Newberry Road to NW 62nd Street NW 62nd Street to SW 20th Avenue SW 20th Avenue to SW Tower Road SW Tower Road to SW 46th Blvd Ending at Hail Village Center.

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