London, Ontario, Canada June 6 & 7, 2008
To prepare the Futurliner to travel to this show we had our usual pre-work session as well as our cleanup from being at Auburn, Indiana then the CCCA at Gilmore Museum, Red Barns the previous weekend. So it was a busy time for all the volunteers.
Since I belong to the TIN - CAN - TOURISTS (TCT), I had been invited to take my 1936 Buick Roadmaster and 1936 Bowlus trailer to this show. The TCT had also been invited to this show plus many, many car clubs in Canada.
So my wife, Carol, and I also had our own preparations to get the car and trailer ready for the trip into Canada.
Carol, upon hearing the weather forecast of 90F degree temperatures for the day traveling to the show, the two show days, and the day returning to Michigan started telling me on Monday evening: “I do not intend to ride in that 1936 Buick without air when it is going to be 90F degrees.” After listening to this for three days I finally decided I had better back off and take a modern air conditioned car. I told her this on Wednesday as I departed for the day.
That evening when I returned that evening she said; “Lets leave now, it is still cool, before the hot weather arrives tomorrow.” I could not believe she decided to go for it. It was a last minute decision and we had to quickly pack, eat supper, but by 7:15 PM we were on the road. It was a nice comfortable 3-1/2 hour ride to Port Huron, Michigan. There we settled in for the night. Next morning we crossed the Blue Water Bridge into Canada with only two cars in front of us lined up at customs.
This was a new experience for our team traveling to Canada. We had all kinds of paper work to fill out prior to us taking the Futurliner across into Canada including posting a financial bond. Our Futurliner volunteers going into Canada included: Wally and Audrey Snow; Chuck and Gail Snow; Conrad and Judy DeJong; and Don Mayton. Carol of course was with me but had to stay with the old car and old trailer at the show. The volunteer group did an outstanding job at the show hosting the Futurliner.
Our tractor driver, Laren Marsman, from Great Lakes Heavy Haul was also another volunteer as he volunteered his time to be the driver to bring the Futurliner into Canada. Although we had all our documents and paper work in order he got held up at customs 45 minutes due to the fact that there were no carbon copies between the sheets of paper and the customs person did not want to write down a seven digit number five times. I am glad Laren is a patient person.
Once at the show grounds the Futurliner was unloaded and cleaned up. Our team of volunteers including Laren as well as two Canadian folks that brought in show cars helped in the washing process.
The Futurliner was positioned in front of the “BIG TENT” that was used for that evening's banquet as well as the performing artists. This tent is reported to be the largest in Canada.
For Saturday the Futurliner was moved to a high traffic area near Steve Plunkett's (our host) house. They were expecting around 2500 cars and we were told that is how many came to this show. There is no judging, all car clubs are invited, and they had special guests such as George Barris, Bat Man, Cat Women, and all the vehicles that the Bat Man TV Show series used such as the car, helicopter, and motorcycle. For the evening show there were musical artists.
One of the neat things they had at this show was a large corral fenced off with working steam powered equipment including tractors and a steam shovel.The steam shovel had a wooden cab and was fired with wood. The steam shovel would scoop up a bucket of dirt, drop it into a vintage truck of the same era, the truck would make a 1/2 circle, dump the load and then return for the next load and this process continued all day. The fence was lined with viewers all day long.
We were told that this car show is the largest in Canada.
That evening, driving the 1936 Buick and trailer to the motel I had a little engine problem, but it seemed to clear itself without me doing anything? Now that becomes worrisome!!!!
The TCT is a group that restores and uses vintage trailers. Many of these trailers are pulled by vintage - antique automobiles. There are also a few vintage motor homes within this group. At this show there were twelve units. After the show we were all invited to Ken and Lana Hindley's home for a Sunday brunch as well as staying in our units at his house if we desired. Some, like Carol and I, needed to get back to Michigan by Sunday evening. Sunday morning Carol and I followed Ken and Lana to their home in Union, Ontario.
Ken and Lana took the entire group to brunch in the beautiful port Erie town of Port Stanley, Ontario. Really enjoyed our visit with the the TCT group as we have been camping with them for about 10 years.
Prior to leaving our hosts I mentioned my engine problem that I had the night before. Before I could say; “I need a good mechanic”, Ken had changed my two gasoline filters, changed my coil, checked the points and re-gaped them, checked for gasoline leaks, and made a new coil to distributor wire. You are always in good hands when Ken is around.
Since the temperatures were still in the 90'sF Ken advised us to use the ferry across the St. Claire River, into Marine City, Michigan. That would avoid the long lines at the Blue Water bridge and possible overheating of the 36 Buick. It worked out great. As we drove to the ferry landing we were the only vehicle there. The ferry arrived within 10 minutes, we loaded and by this time there were a total of five vehicles on the ferry. We quickly crossed the Saint Claire River with a black storm approaching. Just as we pulled up to the customs booth the storm let loose in all its fury. So the customs folks did not waste any time in getting us through.
Arrived home at 10:45 PM with the 1936 Buick purring like a kitten.