July 9-11, 2004
Preview: this fantastic event raised
for the American Cancer Society!
20+ year friend, Russ Caron had been a member of the C5 Registry for a couple of years, and noted the lack of Registry events in this part of the country. In 2000, the year Sandy died, with the Registry's blessing, he did something about it! Sandy was to have been the keynote speaker, so I filled in as best I could.
Maine2000 was a big hit, and the friendships formed that weekend have continued and grown. From the beginning, the focus was 2-fold: to have fun in our Corvettes, and to raise money for the American Cancer Society as Sandy had done via her Corvettes Conquer Cancer Tour for her last two years, and as I have continued in her honor.
The FUN and the FUNDRAISING have just gotten better and better!
Friday, July 9
The weekend started after 1/2 day at work.
Upon arrival at the Parkwood Inn in Brunswick, I was treated to a lot full of C5s...
and a C6, brought by John Wakefield from Nashville. John had been an active
C5 Registry member for several years, and a year or so ago had landed a job as a
quality engineer at the Corvette Plant in Bowling Green, KY.
At about 6, the caravan of 32± Vettes set out for a scenic drive to
Estes' Lobster House in So. Harpswell for a great dinner and
socializing out on the deck.
Oh yeah, and some more shots of the C6...
Saturday, July 10
The first event on Saturday was a scenic road trip over lots of nice, twisty roads.
Thanks to FRS radios, the chatter never stopped.
Here is our traditional potty-stop/photo-op along the way
at the Sherman Lake rest area.
Back on the road again to the next stop: Pemaquid Lighthouse,
one of Maine's most picturesque, and featured on the Maine Quarter!
The bright sun there really showed off Steve Blaha's "ghost flames".
The final leg to our lunch stop at the Lobster Pound in Lincolnville Beach
covered the most fun roads yet. Over the FRS, John was giving "G-meter"
readouts from the C6 after each of the more "interesting" bends.
He reported several readings in the 0.8G range.
After lunch, the group scattered, as we were on our own for the return to the Parkwood.
Some elected more sightseeing, some shopping, many - a combination.
John in the C6 noticed a new Viper on the front lawn of a tiny Chevy dealer in Woolwich. On a whim, he pulled in and went into the showroom to casually ask if it would be OK for him to park the C6 he was driving next to the Viper for some photos. He said there was this funny silence as his request registered, then the salesman said "you're driving a WHAT?" Needless to say, it was OK!
I suspect that it made their day - to be the first Chevy dealer in Maine to have a C6 grace their lot!
It had rained a little on the way back from lunch,
so the wash area at the Parkwood was busy before dinner.
Saturday evening featured a cookout at organizer Russ Caron's house in North
Yarmouth. Yes, for all his hard work putting this event together, to say nothing of
his secret-keeping ability, he deserved to be the first to have a C6 parked in his
garage... even if only temporarily!
Sunday, July 11
As soon as I arrived at the Parkwood, John asked if I would like a ride in the C6. WOULD I !! Does a bear s... ??? Finding a nice straight deserted stretch, he went through the gears, then demonstrated the car's incredible maneuverability with a few mind blowing instant lane changes, so violent that I lost my grip on my coffee mug in the process, spilling it on the floor. Turning hard back into the Parkwood's drive, the G-meter read what he said was a personal best of .91G! Then (after I mopped up the coffee) he posed the car by the Parkwood's welcome sign for another photo op.
(John has informed me that he later got a .99G and a 1.06G reading!)
A couple miles down the road is Thomas Point Beach where we set up a
show to raise money for the American Cancer Society. As you can see,
this is a beautiful spot for a Corvette show. In fact, our club held a
big annual show here for many years.
My radio control C6 on the manifold of the real thing.
My frequent co-pilot (and bodyguard), Gary, tries on the C6.
John Wakefield took a break from showing off the C6 to relax at my table.
The stunning engine compartment of Greg Sohovich's C5, from Ohio.
Led by Bernard Hochberg, a few of the more creative fundraisers moved to the nearby shopping center, setting up a mini-show and stopping people for donations with their American Cancer Society collection boxes. The C6 continued to draw people of all ages like moths to a candle.
Sunday evening was the final banquet, silent auction and awards at the Taste of Maine restaurant.
I couldn't resist this: Remember the movie "A Christmas Story"?
This lamp, just like the one Ralphie's dad won, was in the
waiting area at the restaurant!
The dinner and the company were great.
The serious purpose behind all of the fun this weekend, of course,
was fundraising for the American Cancer Society.
This table was premium raffle items, including a slot car racing set
and a Valentine V1 radar detector package.
Most of the interest was in the Silent Auction. The 2 biggest items were autographed posters donated by Frank Genova: the C6, autographed by Dave Hill and Tom Peters, with photos documenting them signing it, went for $700. The "Last C5" went for $280. 3 autographed C6 models went for between $110 and $125. John Wakefield even auctioned a ride in the C6. That went for $55, and I am told the ride produced a witnessed weekend record 0.92G!
There was one live auction item: John Wakefield brought a prototype
C6 Daytona Sunset Orange "waterfall", autographed by plant and
engineering people. It went for $600.
In wrapping up, Russ presented a bunch of fun awards. Then he got down to
the nitty gritty: the awards for fundraising results. And what incredible results!
Ed & Ilene Licht got the top award:
They alone were responsible for raising over $4000!
The top 5 fundraisers were:
1. Ed & Ilene Licht, NJ, $4,370
2. Martin & Sharon Yaged, NJ, $2,312
3. Bernard & Ruth Hochberg, NJ, $1,148
4. Frank Genova, NY, $1,080
5. John Wakefield, TN, $834
While Russ did a final tally of all the raffle and silent auction results, I thanked this wonderful group of Corvette folks for their incredible support and gave them a summary of what Corvettes Conquer Cancer has been doing this past year. I also told them about some of the developments kindled this year that should make next year even better year for fundraising.
Finally, Russ returned to the mike and recapped the 5 year history of the fundraising
effort of this event. It had doubled the previous year's results nearly every year, with
last year producing $5000 (in the pouring rain, I might add). This year he had a goal of $10,000.
Seeming as astounded as we all were, he announced that
this year's total for the American Cancer Society was
To put this in perspective, the first 4 years of the Maine event,
each of which was a great success in its own right,
generated a combined total of $12,500!
Thanks, Russ, for another job superbly well done, and to all
the wonderful participants, who became friends. Even the weather
cooperated this year, and was near-perfect every time it mattered.
This is going to be a really tough act to follow, but if anybody can,
Russ, you are the man!
The usual final stats for the event.