It’s 1985 and Las Vegas was a far cry from the mega resort filled travel destination it would eventually become. Instead, it was just another city struggling with gang problems of the ’80s. Short on peace, Las Vegas was also short on car culture, as lowriding was practically nonexistent.
During that time, six friends came together to form a new and distinctive type of lowrider car club. After a vote was taken, the original name “Street Level” was replaced with Tiempo Car Club and soon these original members were off to change the automotive landscape of Las Vegas. “We wanted a family oriented club,” Ray Abitia says. “We welcomed all traditional-type of lowriders with our main rule being you could not have any type of gang affiliation,” he continues. Tiempo would become deeply invested in its community, something they proudly continue to do up to this day. They participate in everything from mini car shows at local schools where they speak to kids about the many dangers of drugs and gangs to fund-raisers and the sponsoring of little league baseball teams.
Today, they’ve come together to celebrate 30 years of lowriding memories. Their hard work and dedication to the sport has kept them at the forefront of the Las Vegas lowrider movement. They would honor past and present members. “Although members have come and gone, they will always be Tiempo,” Ray says. Local car clubs such as Klique, USO, and Society, who came all the way from Arizona, would join their fellow riders during the celebration. With the award ceremony out of the way it was time for the real festivities to begin. The night would culminate with drinks, dancing, and the revisiting of memories that their 30-year history together had amassed. With President Manny Estrada at the helm, it’s a guarantee Tiempo will continue to pave the way and set the bar for all Las Vegas lowriders. Our condolences go out to the family of longtime member Gabriel Maldonado, who died this year. “May your switches work in the clouds.”