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Chris Farley Tribute! 1976 Dodge B-Series Tradesman Van

The B-Series of Dodge vans were very popular in the 1970s, especially the Tradesman which was the “working man’s” van vs. the Sportsman which was a family and weekend vehicle. This Tradesman from 1976 is extra special because someone went to great pains and expense to create a tribute to one of the late comedian Chris Farley’s most famous characters, Matt Foley. Everywhere you look, you see cues to his popular Saturday Night Live mainstay. Located in Goodrich, Michigan, this rather nifty van is available here on Facebook Marketplace for $42,500. This neat tip comes to us via Barn Finder Lothar… of the Hill People!

Any fan of 1990s SNL will remember motivational speaker, Matt Foley. Though not created by Chris Farley himself, he named and brought the man to life on nine separate occasions between 1993 and 1997. As a fictional character, he was bigger than life with his loud speech, manic animation, ill-fitting wardrobe, and the famous line about him “living in a van down by the river”. He would usually be hired to bring his brand of encouragement to situations that never worked out as intended.

Besides the line about the van, Foley was also known for dismissive catchphrases like “eating a steady diet of government cheese” and “Well, la-dee-frickin-da!” and “Whoop-dee-frickin-doo!”. Who knows how long Matt might have been a part of our culture if Foley hadn’t ended when Farley himself passed away in late 1997 from drug issues. I don’t recall that we ever got to see the real van in Matt’s life, but the seller’s tribute is about as hard to miss as Foley was himself.

We don’t know when this 1976 Tradesman became a rolling advertisement for Foley and Farley, but we understand it’s logged 84,000 miles over the years. The 360 cubic inch V8 is original and untouched since the 1970s. It has a 4-barrel carburetor, automatic transmission, power accessories, sunroof, and working side exhaust pipes. Everything functions as it should, and we’re told it’s a great running van.

Orange is probably a good color for a Matt Foley tribute. While the body and paint look good, the custom graphics are what make this van a standout. Everywhere you look, you can’t miss a Farley likeness or something he said back on SNL. If you’re a Matt Foley or Chris Farley fan, you can keep his imagery alive by bringing this van home with you!


  1. Avatar photo Howard A Member

    Weeeeeellll, I loved Chris Farley. From Madison, Wis. don’t you know, but to have a van as a tribute, is a bit much. I watched a documentary with Farleys dad and brothers. They all agreed, he was a very troubled child. It’s clear, he did everything in excess, and one day, it killed him. I’m not sure that’s the kind of hero I’d want emblazoned on the side of a van. The van itself is a cool rig, even the not often seen, little left footie for the bright lights, but please, lose the Farley graphics.

    Like 20
  2. Avatar photo Rex Kahrs Member

    Well lah-dee-frickin’ dah!

    Like 18
  3. Avatar photo Packard8

    I lost the joke at $42,500.00

    Like 0
  4. Avatar photo Rick DeRenzo

    STUPID yet funny

    Like 3
  5. Avatar photo Tbone

    Yeah, kind of tragic

    Like 1
  6. Avatar photo RMac

    I’m with Howard on this one
    This is a 10k van tops mega van long wheelbase are not popular collectors but seller seems to think the tributes graphics add 32 k to value
    I loved Chris Farley but not 42 k big love

    Like 11
    • Avatar photo Terry Bowman

      Not only is it a long wheel base but it’s a “Maxi”, extra long tail. I had one you 38 years in the Sportsman Royal Maxi version. It went through my whole family life with the kids. There seems to be some Sportsman add-ons, as the chrome tag light and chrome bumpers. Padded dash pad, steering wheel and peddles also a add on. Missing the doghouse ashtray. I had the same mag wheels on mine (US Indy), also after market.

      Like 4
      • Avatar photo Poppy

        The bigger the better if you are planning on living in it (down by the river).

        Like 5
  7. Avatar photo Euromoto Member

    I left SNL by the (very) early ‘80s, so missed the whole Chris Farley era. To be fair, I checked out a few “Matt Foley” vids on YouTube. Not very funny in my opinion, but no doubt it’s a generational thing. The price here is aspirational, even if the seller could prove that Chris actually slept in it “down by the river.”

    Like 4
    • Avatar photo Howard A Member

      It was an odd sense of humor, that strangely, many people latched on to. His interview with Paul McCartney was kind of funny, but I think captured the real Chris Farley, whether the audience knew it or not.

      Like 5
  8. Avatar photo Cooter Member

    I loved Chris Farley and Tommy Boy with David Spade was slapstick comedy masterpiece!

    Tommy: “Does this suit make me look fat?”

    Richard: “No, your face does”

    Like 9
  9. Avatar photo RMac

    Cooter I loved Farley but agree with Howard he only appealed to certain people who love outrageous slapstick stuff do stupid it is funny
    The van price is over the top I cannot imagine anyone paying near that for a dodge maxi van no matter who it is a tribute to

    Like 3
  10. Avatar photo JoeNYWF64

    Not sure if this is DUI/DWI checkpoint ready.

    Like 3
  11. Avatar photo MoparMike

    I’m pretty sure true vanners are sick of the “living in a van down by the river” cliche. It’s as overdone as Scooby van, hippie van and free candy.

    Like 3
  12. Avatar photo Regina Huff

    If it jumped time already it will !

    Like 0

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