Always one of our favorite annual events, Carlisle this year was no
exception. We were able to send the American Cancer Society's
Harrisburg, PA office $833.00
in contributions we received this weekend.
Thursday, August 25
Leaving home... with my new traveling companion:
the pilot C6 Z06 left front fender*.
Arrival at the Ramada in Carlisle. Gary preceded me by an hour or so.
Friday, August 26
When our assigned space had a squatter occupying it who refused to move, Lisa of Carlisle Events came through immediately with what was actually a better space - right on the corner of the main intersection on the Fairgrounds!
Dan & Jake of the C5/C6 Registry invited me to the Friday night banquet, and asked me to do a 50/50 raffle. Always glad to oblige, I did just that, and the 50/50 produced $335.00 for the American Cancer Society! I also picked up many autographs on the fender, seen leaning against the table in the background in the first photo below. These included Wil Cooksey, Corvette Plant Manager, seen speaking in the right photo below.
Saturday, August 27
After the Celebrity Lunch, I struck out to scan through the eligible 2600+
Corvettes in the "Fun Display". I was looking for the ONE Corvette
that Sandy would have picked. I have no doubt that this is it!
Yes, Larry Spilman's Honduras Maroon '62 is gorgeous, but it's those classic American Racing Torque Thrust mag wheels that would have grabbed Sandy. This is the car that we were looking for (but couldn't find) when we bought our first Vette in 1977.
We "settled" for a '63.
In the process, I spotted the '55 from my sponsor, the Precision Valley Corvette
Museum in Springfield, VT. The Museum's owner, Matt and his wife Cindy, DROVE
it down to Carlisle to participate in the special display for the '55's 50th Birthday.
I also got a first-hand feel for the incredible crowd on the Fairground that day!
It was even more packed than it had been in the morning when I was carrying
THE FENDER around in search of autographs.
When I got back to our display, Dave McLellan, former Corvette Chief Engineer, was there for a visit.
A short while later, another celebrity stopped by for a visit: the current Miss America, Deidre Downs. She had seen our display while being driven by earlier in the day and wanted to come back. Her "Day Job" career is in pediatric cancer care!
11 years later, in 2016, I met her again at a childhood cancer fundraiser in Athens AL.
We got another photo together, and she signed a print of the Carlisle photo!
Sunday, August 28
...dawned cold and wet.
It gradually brightened, and by noon was at least dry, if not bright sunshine.
The Gate City Corvette Club set up camp in back of our display.
I got away briefly to visit with some supporters. I caught up with sponsor Chuck Mallett, who was taking orders for his latest hot rod: the Pontiac Solstice, which he livens up a bit with an LS2 Corvette engine and other related upgrades! One dealer alone has ordered 50 of them! I also made an appointment to stop at
his shop in Berea, OH Tuesday afternoon for routine maintenance on the trusty '97.
Carlisle '05 ended on a very special note for us.
Dan Feidler, Gate City Corvette Club president, had somehow arranged with Lance Miller to present Corvettes Conquer Cancer
with a "Big Check" for the money generated at their Fundraiser event held earlier in the month in Nashua, NH. This was done in front of the stage and grandstand, right before the final Carlisle feature: the Corvette Giveaway. Dan can be seen holding the "check" at the right edge of the left photo below. As we were waiting to do that, a white '53 Vette pulled up in front of our car. It was Noland Adams in the car that was the model for the new Corvette US postage stamp!
Dan made a very moving presentation of the $8,000 check.
Noland briefly talked about the stamp and the '53 pictured on it,
then Carlisle drew the winning ticket for the red ZR-1 Corvette on the stage.
Carlisle ended with our car right there between the Stage and the Grandstand!
Thank you Lance, Carlisle Events, Dan and Gate City!
Monday, August 29
Today was a quick 120 mile drive East to my parents' house in Phila. for the night.
Well, it should have been quick. A bad wreck on the PA Turnpike forced a
mandatory detour off the pike... after 90 minutes of no movement at all. The good
news was that a detour that I chose took me right through Valley Forge Park.
* The Fender
This is the left front fender off the very first pilot 2006 Z06 Corvette to go down the production line. The Z06 is the new for 2006 super-Corvette: 505 horsepower, aluminum chassis, many other unique performance enhancing parts, and unique body panels. This was the practice car, assembled as the plant figured out how to incorporate the new model, with all its differences, into the production flow. Designated "experimental", the car could not be sold to the public, and was partially dismantled afterward to be used for training. John Spencer at the Assembly Plant sent both front fenders to Hank Vezina for the Gate City Corvette Club Fundraiser held August 13 in Nashua, NH. Made of carbon fiber, the fenders weigh only 3 pounds each! The Pilot car was also unique in that it was painted Daytona Sunset Orange, which was not an available color for the 2006 Corvette!
The right fender was auctioned at that Fundraiser for $800. The other I kept, and transported to the next 3 events, collecting autographs on it from everybody involved with Corvette design, engineering and manufacturing.