On the night of January 22nd, 2019, Mopar Connection hosted a meet at Naugles Tacos in Fountain Valley, California. Originally, Naugles Tacos operated from 1970 to 1995, and was revived by Christian Ziebarth in 2015, after he found that the Naugles trademark was previously dropped by then-owner, Del Taco. As a result, Ziebarth resurrected the Southern California eatery in a small location at Mount Langley Street in Fountain Valley, California.
“I’ve known Christian for years before he ever bought the Naugles brand,” explained Mopar Connection Editor-in-Chief, Kevin Shaw. “Although its been years since I lived in California, whenever I got the chance, I’d go by a visit him (and grab a bite to eat).” In fact, the visit became an annual pilgrimage for Shaw and Edelbrock’s Regional Sales Manager, August Cederstrand. “August and I thought, ‘Hey. This time, let’s get the word out and give away some free stuff!'”
From 6:30 to 8pm that night, Shaw offered free tacos to anyone who was attending; Cederstrand arrived with goodie bags stuffed with Edelbrock baseball caps, decals, buttons, a catalog and other desireables. Despite the unusual time, the meet welcomed a modest turnout: two classic Mopars and a super-clean Corvair convertible were in attendance, along with four new Dodge Challengers. Paul Creason and his wife brought a beautiful 1969 Plymouth GTX painted in Sunfire Yellow, with a black vinyl roof, which was a standout.
The oldest car in attendance was Larry Dewees’s 1939 Plymoth B/Gas drag car. Even though Dewees painted the car yellow, he nicknamed the car “Orange Monster” because of the 413cubic-inch V8 sitting underneath the hood. A California native, Dewees is a member of the Mopar Knights car club, which specializes in these kind of cars.
“I get it,” Shaw explained. “It’s a weeknight in the middle of January. Most folks are either coming home from work at this time, or being the ‘off season’ have their classic cars up on stands half-way through a wintertime project. Given how little time we had to promote this, a dozen folks was great. Next year though, we’ll definitely have a lot more. Plus, c’mon, free tacos, man. What’s not to like about that?”
By this time next year, this gathering will meet once more, and the free tacos will be given out again. “Oh, we’ll definitely do this again,” Cederstrand promised. “This was a last-minute thing that Kevin thought of a few weeks before. We’ll definitely spread the word a month or two before next year’s comes around.” If you’re a serious Naugles fan, be sure to check out this revived fast food chain from the past.