On a Saturday in August every year, more than 1.5 million people and 40,000 muscle cars, street rods, exotics and collector cars descend on Detroit for the Woodward Dream Cruise. The Cruise is a 12-hour petrol-powered ode to 50s and 60s and the days when Woodward Avenue -- the Boulevard of Dreams! -- was the heart of Cruising, USA. Now in it's 12th year, the entire cruise and the satellite events that surround it during the weekend are being protested by a 63-year-old retired schoolteacher named Joellen Gilchrist.

Her complaint is that the Cruise is environmentally unfriendly, and her protest is part of the Step It Up campaign that has an admirable goal -- to convince Congress to reduce carbon emissions by 80% in time for 2050 -- that targets "the world's largest one-day celebration of car culture." The Cruise features vehicles from before the passage of the Clean Air Act, so they aren't sterling examples of eco-friendly motororing. But as AutoblogGreen rightly points out, most of the vehicles in the Cruise don't get many miles outside of events like the Cruise and the random joyride. While she aims to keep her protest friendly, even humorous, it might make more sense if she simply protested the commuters headed to and from work every day. This kind of enthusiast event, however, provides a target that will be sure to get some attention.

Intriguingly, even The Sierra Club has remained on the sidelines. The Club hosts a Green Cruise the weekend before -- sans motorized appliances -- and the folks who don't like the cruise simply spend the weekend out of town.

[Source: Detroit Free Press via AutoblogGreen]