January 17 , 2015 saw the annual gathering of the gang....er...I mean club. This year we descended on the Harrison's (again). With spouse and friends we had almost 30 people, a great crowd.
For a change we did the garage tour before dinner. He has the motor out of the race car and the heads off being further flowed so no ear splitting demos this time. We learned (saw) the results of lots of compression and a lot of overlap in the cam on one of his customer's cars, the side of a piston gets blowtorched right through it.
Dinner as usual was way, way too much, an Italian theme this year. Thanks to all who brought all the delicacies. Hoping someone got a picture of the club logo done as icing on a cake.
1) Treasury: An oddity...after almost 20 years in existence...the bank balance is within $100 now as of what it was back then. To that point, the club has voted to increase annual dues from its current $20 that has been in existence since inception, to $25. See President's message further below for some info on what we'd like to do with these few more funds.
2) 2014 was a successful though moderate year. Club membership grew to over 30 which is great news. Events attendance needs some work so we'll solicit more from the club members on items of interest. The annual show (previously documented) did well at its new venue, though we'll probably keep looking for a more publicly located site for next year.
1) President Matt Clarke stepped down after 5-6? years in the position, quoting his mother's saying "inlaws and fish, after 3 days they start to smell". The new officers are:
President: Gary Harrison
Vice President: Lou Ferreira
Secretary: Matt Clarke (they wouldn't let him get too far)
Treasurer: Eric Decker
Webmaster: Rick Bohler
2) Annual Show planning. Some new areas were brought up for research, including making the rounds again inquiring with the area malls (historically they wanted exorbitant fees), others, and a detailed attempt to research downtown Fernandina Beach. Gary will create/assign specific site assignments for research
3) Events: The main get together will remain the 4th Saturday MainStreet/Springfield cruise with a twist. Instead of publishing which month's we're going...all are just to assume we will be there unless otherwise notified of a specific alternate event. This way, you always know you'll have some buds to hang out with. We'll work on some ideas on whomever gets there first, having some fashion of parking spot saving solution for the others.
Other events discussed that will be worked through during an officers meeting is slotting some of these throughout the year:
- Club Picnic (Andy volunteered again and it was a great venue)
- Gainesville Test 'n Tune (you don't have to race, but bring your car anyway)
- Group Repair Shop (take on a member's small project as a group... painting Mark's engine bay multiple colors sounds like fun)
- Club cruise/dinner. Last year's trip to Chris Koch's personal collection and dinner was the example of a ton of fun.
- Do a Kissimmee event
- NPD owner in Ocala has a huge personal collection
- The folks who sponsor the RingHaver show also have a collection near I-95 and 16.
- The usuals: Turkey Run, this needs revitalized and truly organized
- Highly recommended for your bucket list is the Pontiac Nationals in Norwalk Ohio (7/31-8/2)...400 PONTIAC race cars and 400 show cars, hard to beat.
- POCI convention this year is in Louisville 7/22 - 7/26.
4) Marketing: With the few additional funds from the increase in dues, we're going to get together and plan out some marketing, at a minimum quality hand-outs everyone can keep in their cars and spread around down and to Pontiac owners as they encounter them. We'll also check out club business cards.
5) Immediately we have the Ocala show at Garlits Museum 1/31. We leave Jax at 7:30, pick up others in Starke on 301 at 8:30 and continue down
Thanks for all your support in 2014 and remember, PONTIACs are now on the endangered species list, so only you can keep them alive....or...my favorite, "drive them like you stole 'em"
The Ocala show at Garlits Museum 1/31/15
Pictures will be posted soon.
Dixie Chapter at the Central Florida Winter Run show at Don Garlits Drag Racing Museum.
Well, it may be winter up north (and specifically on this weekend the northeast got buried in 3+ feet of snow), but this is Florida, so a January club trip to a show was in order. Saturday January 31 seven members gathered for the 2+ hour trip from Jacksonville down to Don Garlits' Drag Racing museum for the Central Florida Winter Run show in Ocala. We did not know what to expect and were a bit overwhelmed when over 350 cars where there. Parking all our cars together in a row made for a nice presentation...but I'm getting ahead of myself.
The trip is always the "experience". We did it in stages...starting with 3 members, picking up 2 more in Starke, and then 2 more in Citra Florida. I'm sure you've been in one of these caravans, but it never ceases to amaze me how a bunch of these old cars together can really mess up traffic. Whether it is rubber necking at a light in a small down, or a car going 1 mile/hour faster to get a good slow look...while 10 cars are piled up behind them, it becomes a humorous sight. And....are you sitting down... no really, I mean sitting down. What would a cruise be without a breakdown. You get 3 guesses and the first two don't count on who. Who (amazingly) breaks the most? yeap, our fearless leader Mr Harrison. Stopping to get gas 200 yards from our initial meeting place...he calls to say his battery is dead (wonder how it started earlier that morning). But, luck was on our side and we had jumper cables.
Back to the show, the day started at 48 chilly degrees (and why did I have flip-flops on?), but rose to 65 with a bright sun around 1pm. Gorgeous. If you haven't been to Garlits, it is a bucket list item. He has collected so much stuff (more than just cars and more than just his cars) crammed into the various warehouses that it is mind boggling. We are far removed from the front engine dragster era, but looking at them now, let me tell you, them folks were nuts, full blown crazy. Let's see, I'll just lay my legs over and around the rear end, with my feet straddling the bell housing and clutch, and be spitting distance behind 426 Hemi cubes running 95% nitro all of which was reassembled in the hotel parking lot the night before with a flashlight.
In the GM class member Bill Bass took home a trophy so it was a worthwhile trip (another big Pontiac Bonneville took one as well). Not bad at all while being outnumbered 10-1 by Chevy's, and handful of Olds and Buicks. It was a great time.
check out more pictures HERE
Cars & Coffee at the Amelia Concours
Click HERE to view pictures.
It all started long long ago, in a galaxy far far away... member Andy Musil had a contact into the Amelia Concours and inquired about the club participating. With the anticipation of a 5 year old just before Christmas...we submitted our applications and waited. The seas parted and I believe all of us that applied, were accepted... we thought it was 10 of us, but over time discovered it was 14. Then the week of the March 14 event, the weatherman was predicting doom and gloom... but alas as the week went on, the weather looked a bit better, and by show day we actually had sun and almost 80 degrees. Folks, the Amelia Concours is another 'bucket list' item. We were just at the 9-1pm Saturday Cars & Coffee and even that turnout had an amazing assortment of mostly european and exotic cars...and all the regulars said the next day, Sunday, you wouldn't be able to see the next wave of exotics and rare cars for the thousands of people that will descend upon it. 14 of us streamed in together, and got lucky and with a bit of tight parking, all got to part together...in model year order. It was a heck of a sight. And un-modestly, we were the most represented american car company as a group. Take a look at the pictures..it was a great time.
Click HERE to view pictures.
May 9. We had a great turnout, I think we had we had 10 cars and 16 people there. Some of usuals made it (that's a compliment) and a few folks we haven't seen in a while - hi Terry and Lil. New club member Hugh James and his friend Marilyn made it driving his beautiful turquoise 67' Bonneville convertible. Great car Hugh! Jack brought his 70 Formula 400 RamAir II. The drive down State Road 13 along the river was beautiful. We got to the restaurant at around 4:30 to eat and were able to get seated right away. Glad we got there early. As we were leaving, the place was packed with no parking available and they were parking up along SR13. As usual though, the food was great!
Then over to Andrew Zinck's house for desert, again right on the river, incredible view.
There are various cruise pictures included from the various legs of the journey. We'll try to keep them in order so you can sort of follow
Dixie Chapter at the drags
Click HERE to view pictures.
The club ventured down to Green Cove Spring's 1/8 mile dragstrip July 18 under threatening skies. We did get a small shower around 6pm upon arriving, but it cleared by 6:30 and it was so hot, everything dried out quickly before the lanes opened at 7pm. (Hey, what is this rule about no shorts or flip flops anyway? it was over 90 with 99% humidity). Did I say it was hot? Hey, it was hot.
Gary called ahead letting them know there were a bunch of us coming, so they gave us all a discount and made a point to talk about the club and the cars every time they were on the line. They were a great bunch of hosts, thanking us for coming repeatedly...hey, we're the ones that had all the fun.
Most of us were able to park together, so it was also a car show which the regulars seemed to appreciate.
About 16 members, plus another 10 or so family and friends made it, with 7 of the club running as well as Dan Bromley's friend in a car a twin to his 99 Formula, (even down to having the slicks on black pontiac rims).
I didn't get to see everyone's time slips but I saw a few the low 8's and I'm pretty sure Gary was running in the 7's. Though, the show stealer was an 80s Mustang running nitrous, pulling the front wheels for 30 feet....um...they let him do solo passes just in case it decided to go left or right.
The most excitement by club folks was Bill Bass' buddy Steve Cybulski. He had his 66 GTO on slicks with newly installed exhaust cut-outs. He was going back and forth on tire pressure and air shock pressure trying to dial it in...um...they decided it needed more tire pressure after he hit 3rd gear and the car moved right, then left, close enough to the wall for Steve to reach out and file down his fingernails. He saved it so we can say now "what a ride that must have been".
Take a look at the pictures, I think you'll see it was a blast, and I'm assuming, similar to fishing... "the stories", "the one that got away", and for these guys, "if I'd have just hit 3rd better" must be similar in that they grow over time.
Remember... "bucket list"...we're all getting older, if you didn't make it, put it on your priority list for next time.
Thanks for the large turn out everyone, it was a big time.
Click to see the video:
Steve's wild ride
Click HERE to view over 250 pictures of the show
Dixie Chapter "Fall Classic" Pontiac/Oakland/GMC show October 24, 2015
As usual, weather forecasts earlier in the week were a bit "iffy", but it isn't every job where you can only be right 50% of the time and keep it...and again this year the weather cleared and it was an amazing day.
Then there was the venue, our first time at downtown Fernandina Beach. We had the entire Centre (main) street closed for us. An amazing old downtown with neat little shops and restaurants, and huge oak trees covering most of downtown. With the streets closed, tourists, participants and locals could all just wander down the street amongst the cars, it looked more like a festival.
Cars? did I mention cars? Almost 100 Pontiacs & GMCs in one place for a local show. We filled 2nd street all the way to 7th street, on both sides, and some along the curbs...and some ...um... on the curbs. You'll see what I mean when you look at the pictures.
Then there were the participants, our various advertising really paid off this year, and as the pre-registrations started streaming in, we decided we had to have a long distance award added. From 4 hours south of Jacksonville, to Tallahassee 4 hours west and everything in between, and up into George, and then South Carolina (5 hours). Then it got serious, a registration from Tennessee came in (490 miles)...and finally, the dam burst when a couple from around Dayton Ohio decided to drive down and make a vacation out of it..that's a 2 day drive. Absolutely amazing. And with more folks from out of town, we got to see a whole new set of cars as well.
The awards were incredibly unique (various configurations of pontiac indian designs) and the type folks will leave out on their mantels (not plaques or plastic trophies to stick in the attic). I hope we have a few close-ups to show you.
Seems to have been a big hit...maybe we'll try for this venue again next year.
Of course, a big thanks to our sponsors: City of Fernandina Beach, Andy Musil Investments and Ron Anderson Chevrolet/GMC/Buick. And to the club members who came early, set-up, handled parking and the lousy job of tearing down, a big thanks...and especially to Beth the Registration Czar, and Gary on that beach cruiser bike covering all 7 blocks on a regular basis.
And the winners were:
Best in Show: Fay Shute 1952 Chieftan
Class A: 67-69 Firebird/TA
1st – Charlie Sauls - 1967 firebird convertible
2nd – Larry Henson - 1969 firebird
Class B: 70-81 Firebird/TA
1st – Gary Harrison - 1973 Super Duty TA
2nd – Kevin Rimsky - 1971 TransAm
3rd – Tim Owen - 1976 TransAm
Class C: 82-02 Firebird/TA
1st – Cecil Loflin - 1999 Anniversary TA
2nd – William Lanston - 1987 Firebird Convertible
3rd – John Claver - 1994 Indy Pace Car
Class D: 62-67 GTO/Lemans/Tempest
1st – Bill Bass - 1966 GTO convertible
2nd – Robert Bennett - 1966 GTO convertible
3rd – David Quinn - 1967 GTO
Class E: 68-77 GTO/Lemans/Tempest
1st – Tim Brown - 1970 GTO
2nd – Doug Cooley - 1969 Tempest
3rd – Gary Harrison - 1969 Judge
Class F: Pre 1960s fullsize (** Best of show came out of this class)
1st - Sandy Konigsberg - 1958 Bonneville
2nd – David Quinn - 1951 Chieftan
Class G: 1960 and up fullsize
1st – Roger Williamson - 1961 Bonneville
2nd – Mike Jole - 1961 Bonneville
3rd – Bud & Carol Schiefer - 1960 Catalina
Class H: Late Model thru 2003
1st - Robbie Barneau - 1993 Sunbird convertible
2nd – James Musco - 1987 Fiero
Class J: Survivor
1st – John Fischer - 1987 TransAm
2nd – Beth Harrison - 1961 Catalina
Class K: Modified/FX
1st - Eddie Barra - 1986 TransAm (blown and chrome)
2nd – Rick Bohler - 1967 Firebird custom
3rd – Morton Pomeroy - 1963 Royal Catalina
Class L: Modern (04-10)
1st - Pat Murphy - 2009 G8-GXP
2nd – Dwayne Mussard - 2009 G8-GT
3rd – Ed Casacia - 2008 G8-GT
Class M: GMC
1st – Gene Barineau - 1979 GMC Caballero Diablo