Hello all. It’s been a busy time for me and I hope a good one so far for all of you. There’s a lot going on out there in car land in general and I hope that you have been able to start taking advantage of all the events across our country and for our neighbors to the North. The weather here in the Northeast has been a bit unpredictable with more rain than we’d like, but as true car people, we persevere and head out anyway. Hopefully, the remainder of the summer will improve meteorologically.
Before I get into anything more, I want to thank all of you for making this column a success. I had hoped that this column would be well received and from the amount of hits that it gets, I seem to have succeeded. The powers to be here at Allpar took a chance on this and I’m pleased that it has worked out for all involved. As I’ve said before, I still want your input and questions. This column is for you so your input is always important.
The Chicagoland Emergency Vehicle Show is just around the corner and if you are in the Aurora, Illinois vicinity the first weekend in August, try to catch the show. It is one of the largest and best attended emergency vehicle shows in the US. More information on the CEVS can be obtained at www.emergencyvehicleshow.com .
I hope you enjoyed the recent guest column on the Aquideck Island Police Parade. The pictures were excellent and I thank our guest columnist for assuming the role of watch commander while I was off on a much needed vacation. North Carolina is our yearly destination, and our second home. What do we as true car people do while on vacation? Of course…we go to the races.
The Police Parade was an excellent representation of what we are all about as police car collectors. Not only do we help preserve an important segment of automotive history, but we also honor those who protect the public trust, especially those that have given the ultimate sacrifice. This attitude bodes well for all of us in car collecting by extension. It is not uncommon to see classic car owners of all types at rallies to support our members of law enforcement, the military, and at other local community support events. Our brethren in the motorcycling community are significant participants in these events on a regular basis.
This weekend just past, I and another local Association member attended a local rally to support our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as those that have served in the past along with especially honoring those that have sacrificed for our freedoms. The event organizing group was made up of several veterans’ groups that send much needed and appreciated care packages to our troops serving overseas. We should never forget that our ability to own and restore our classics and collector cars, police, fire, military, and civilian, stem from those that have given of themselves unselfishly to preserve the freedoms that we often take for granted. We were immensely honored by being requested to prominently display our cars on the square right in the middle of the rally. Of course, we adorned both cars with the Stars & Stripes flying from the side windows. Nothing was more appropriate. Next show or cruise you attend, if you don’t have one already, get a window mount flag and fly it proudly.
I have some news on a recent show that held its first event. The Verona, NJ show to benefit the Police Benevolent Association there was a success. The reports I received tell that a good time was had by all and that it was well attended. I’m definitely regretful that I could not attend despite my earlier intention to do so. The show will be held again next year according to the organizers, so stay tuned for info on the 2009 edition as it becomes available. Bill & Tony…great job and congrats!! Hey, guys…maybe a two day event next time? Whatcha think??
The EVOOA is preparing for its upcoming yearly meet coming up fast, this time in Elko, Nevada. Nevada state representative Mark Butterfield has been working very hard to organize what is supposed to be a great multi day event. Remember that any Association meets are open to non members also. Information on this and other meets is available on our web site. There is a link to our site right here on Allpar.
Not to jinx what is being discussed behind closed doors, but there is a possibility of an East Coast EVOOA meet in upstate NY in 2010. Plans are very preliminary at this time and nothing is written in stone yet. If any of our readers out there might be interested in attending such a meet in ’10, drop me a line through this site. If we have a significant amount of pending support, it might help it to become a reality. Once again, you do not have to be an Association member to attend any EVOOA events, though after you attend, you may just want to join. All types of emergency vehicles, civilian and military, are welcome. We also do not require vehicles to be completed or restored. Bring what you have. It is more important for us to have you come and enjoy yourselves than to mandate what you should bring or what condition it should be in. I remember before my ’06 national meet here that I was contacted by an owner of a convertible ambulance/hearse. He was concerned that we wouldn’t want his kind of vehicle at our event. It wasn’t uncommon back when funeral homes ran local ambulance services to have a vehicle that served double duty and the coach makers made these types of vehicles. His Cadillac was as welcome as any other. It served as an emergency vehicle and that’s all that mattered.
On other news, I haven’t received any information on a lot that affects police car owners for a while now. Things seem to have quieted down in California, though it has been relayed to me that the CHP is not endorsing any previously restored but unendorsed or new restorations of their cars by private owners and this is the way that it is likely going to remain indefinitely. It would behoove you not to bother trying and not to request copies of their door logos. You will be wasting your time. I do hope to have some good news for Pennsylvania owners this fall when the revisions to Title 75, otherwise known as the Vehicle Code, become enacted. I’ll say no more on this for now because you know what happens in government. You cannot make book on anything for sure until it happens.
We all know what the ridiculous jump in fuel prices has done to our budgets just to commute to work, much less to vacationing. In a recent AAA poll, 38% of those polled were canceling their trips over the July 4th weekend. Another 28% were still traveling, but staying closer to home. This has affected car show participants as well. Many of our copcars require premium fuel as they have larger engines and 4 barrel carburetors. My M Body is an example of this. Still and all, most of us try to attend at least a few events as these cars are not used on a daily basis. I hope that all of you can still enjoy your cars until this situation can resolve itself. The sooner, the better!!
That’s pretty much all for now. We’re looking forward to seeing all the beautiful classics and rods at the yearly 3M Car Show at Michigan International Speedway the weekend of August 15th in conjunction with the NASCAR Nationwide Series and Sprint Cup races. They have little to do with copcars, but they have a great turnout of classic car owners and the show is a fantastic bonus to any car enthusiasts attending the races that weekend. Admission to the show is free and you do not have to hold a ticket to any of the races to enter the show area. Parking might be a bit pricey if you want just to see the cars, though. If you’re in the vicinity of Brooklyn, Michigan that weekend, you might want to check the show out and maybe look me up at the turn three campground. My camper has a “MY NEXT POLICE CAR IS GOING TO HAVE A HEMI!” bumper sticker on the back. Hey, don’t sound so surprised. I restored an award winning show car before I started restoring police cars! You gotta love them all.
Until next time, keep saving those copcars and have a great summer!!!
Introduction | The basics of police car collecting | Who are collectors? Why do we collect?
Emergency lighting | Sirens | Where to find retired police cars | Emergency vehicle shows | Investing in police cars
Restorations: Rules and regs for restorers | Chevy Malibu | 1949 Ford | Do-it-yourself bodywork | Do-it-yourself mechanical work
Shows: Chicagoland Emergency Vehicles Show | Aquidneck Island Police Car Parade (2008 | 2009)
Also see the EVOOA home page
Current Police Cars
Mike Cairns on building RamsVans, Ford, innovation, and short topics
Dodge’s Burma Road trucksCreated for China during World War II
All Mopar Car and Truck News
Killing the buzzes
Dodge pickup trucks, 1961-71