Old Town 2005 NCRS 27th Florida Regional
I have been to this mid-Winter NCRS Regional event about 7-10 times in it's various central Florida locations. Cypress Gardens and the other previous venues each had their own particular attraction and advantages. The current Old Town location is central to several other large family attractions. Directly adjacent is a small amusement park with rides including a roller coaster. Old Town itself runs for 2-3 narrow city blocks and is bordered with 2 story buildings containing a varirty of shops and restaurants. These blocks are a pedestrian mall, except for Saturday night when they allow a local cruise to fill both sides of the street.
As usual I got to see several old Corvette friends that I only see at these events. Toby Taylor, David Van Weele, Carl Askenback, Phil Foisey, Scott Kohn, Joe Magera, Ken and Gary Nabors. And many other including Rob Dame, Art Armstrong, Howard Loomis, Brian McHale, Tom Russo and Byron and Ronnie Cooper, Ernie Coffman, Terry Michaelis (didn't see Fred), Al Knoch, Neil Porter, Mark Lovejoy, Joe Ray and others, but after 30 years of NCRS, I CRS.
We arrived early on Wednesday and were parked right at the entrance to the auction and vendor check in. From this vantage point I got to see virtually every Corvette auction arrival. I must becoming jaded, because I can honestly say that I did not see anything that I haven't see before in regard to the Corvettes. There was one semi-custom that was interesting. It was an NCRS-COE, i.e. Not Correctly Restored Cab Over Engine. This pickup truck was a 1941 GMC. It was somewhat customized and I really liked it's basic appearance (sans the customizing.). Note the large sun shade over the front windshield. This accessory was typical of that era without cockpit mounted sun visors. In this front view it does not look too unusual. Also note the bumper guards and grill guard. It was the last model to have any chrome until after WWII. Others had this trim painted. About 3,700 of these were manufactured. The following side view better illustrates this pick-ups main feature: it is a COE or Cab Over Engine model. Note the short stubby nose and hood. This is accentuated by the higher cab that even has a small step incorporated into the front fender to accommodate this extra height. Again note the Las Vegas style Dealers Visor over the windshield. It really is pugnacious. There was more than one Corvette Pace Car for sale.
Note the 2 large external hood hinges and the 2 tear drop spot lamps. The former appears period correct, but the lamps look like 50's items. Note there is only one wiper arm and blade.
Note the 2 hood lift handles on either side of the upper flat grill bars. The prices on the windshield was $36.5K and my wife said "go ahead, buy it if you want it". I was tempted, but the undercarriage was "so-so" and I did not have Joe Lucia to verify the numbers. The size of the front and rear fenders look like they would accommodate larger tires. Below the rear window is a hinged compartment. I'm not sure if the side mount spare tires were originally covered; nor the skirts or chrome bars along side the pick up bed. Based upon the configuration of the front bumper, the rear does not appear authentic, nor the 59 Caddy tail lamps. The Old Town Saturday night cruise featured a variety of models. I have always liked these Jeep utilitarian pick ups. Behind it was a 40's Chevy 4 door stovebolt 6 StyleMaster. Wish I had a larger disposable income, but I cannot complain. We enjoyed this. While in Georgia we visited the Mighty Eight Air Force Heritage Museum. It chronicles the history and valor of these great American heroes. I took over a hundred jpegs and it will require a separate presentation. It is filled with artifacts from these warriors, including their adversaries. It is a must visit for any WWII history enthusiast. There are air craft, guns, bombs and poignant letters to the parents and wives of service men and women. I had a tear in my eyes more than once. The Museum is directly off the exit and so close to I-95 that this B-47 Stratojet is visible from the highway. You can see a vehicle on I-95 below the distant billboard at the extreme left. Below a sample.
Suspended from the ceiling were several WWII models. This is a German Messerschmitt, ME-109.
Outside in the parking lot is this (Navy) carrier based F-4C Phantom. It was not really that large an aircraft as you can see from the jpeg below.
All I need is a trailer and I could bring this beauty home.
In the foreground a supersonic MIG 17A with the air brakes opened. Partly hidden in the background is another super- sonic model, the Phantom F4C and a subsonic C6.
This year instead of flying, I had my able chauffeur drive our mobile office to these events. He also provided security.
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