Houston Art Car Parade Vehicle Stolen

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STAFFORD, Texas ~ (KPRC-TV/KHOU-TV) ~ Almost 20,000 vehicles are stolen every year in the Houston area, but not many with a flaming jack-o-lantern on the hood.

 Dennis Dillow decorated a 1991 Ford Country Squire wagon for the annual event, but woke up on the morning of Easter Sunday to find it missing from his apartment parking lot. Dillow has been working on the creation since August of 2009, and themed the car as an homage to the online comic strip XKCD. He built the car to replace his previous entry, titled the ‘Aartvark’ which stopped running a few months ago. Dillow said, “maybe somebody was jealous because I had two and decided to take one of them”.
 The Houston Art Car Parade has been held since 1984 and has grown into the largest and longest parade of its kind in the world. But this is not your average collection of tissue paper covered floats; think more along the lines of Mardi Gras for rolling vehicles, featuring creations based on everything from fantasy, humor, personal interests and even political statements. With over 250 entries presented by artists both local and abroad, the event is enjoyed by tens of thousands of art fans every year.
 Dillow pleaded on local TV for the thieves to return his car in running condition, saying, “if you need to take a few things off of it fine, but don’t do anything to keep it from being in the parade”. He’s anxious to find his car by May 22nd, when the Art Car Parade makes its yearly run through downtown Houston. Suprisingly enough, this is not the first time one of the visually flamboyant vehicles has been stolen. In 2010, Esteban Martinez reported his skull-covered 2002 Suzuki GSXR as stolen, and in 2009 Johnny and Cynthia Rojas has their car, AC-8, stolen from their Garden Oaks area home.
 
Photo credit: KHOU-TV
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