2018 National Annual Meeting Recap
SSR Region Receives Two Special Recognition Awards
The 2018 National CCCA Annual Meeting was held in Branson, Missouri in mid-April, and by any measure I think anyone who attended would admit to a great overall experience. Not only was the four day schedule packed with things to do and see, but the locale put our Region, as well as the great State of Missouri, on center stage. It was gratifying to see so much support from our Region, and by my count there were seventeen regular and associate members in attendance, plus four Classics that were entered in the Grand Classic. Early bird registration began on a Wednesday and that afternoon a number of guests boarded the Branson Railway directly across from the Hilton host hotel, for a scenic tour of the Ozarks in domed passenger cars from a bygone era. Everyone was on their own for dinner that evening, but later all were invited to the Hospitality Suite on the 12th floor of the Hilton to share in some good cheer and fellowship with members representing Regions from across the country.
Day 2 of the week’s activities began with a continental breakfast just outside of the meeting rooms, and this is a great time to meet and engage with members from other regions. It goes without saying that the topic of these conversations is all about our Classics.
Immediately following breakfast, a full membership meeting open to all attendees was conducted by the National Board. This meeting follows a specified agenda whereby each Board member gives a report on his or her committee responsibilities. In addition, the voting results of the National ballot are announced and new incoming Board members are introduced. The new members joining the 2018 National Board are David Kane of the Metro NY Region and Webster Petersen of the Upper Midwest Region. This was also the final Board Meeting chaired by outgoing President Tom Jones. He will be succeeded by Carrol Jensen, who has served in various capacities on the National level for a number of years.
I particularly enjoyed the meeting on Publications/Websites, conducted by Ron Verschoor, Editor of the National Classic Car magazine and Bulletin, and thought his presentation was very interesting and informative. Ron is also the Director of the Southern California Region, and shared many ideas for Regional Directors and Editors to consider to keep content for their respective Regional publications and websites fresh, interesting and informative to their members.
Late morning found us boarding one of the three buses which departed the hotel destined for lunch at a themed restaurant full of memorabilia decorating the walls and ceilings. While lunch was being served, hot rolls were tossed around the room by the wait staff, some landing safely in waiting hands, others hitting unsuspecting guests in the head, while many missed there mark altogether and landed on the floor.
After lunch it was back on the bus for a short ride to the Branson Auto and Farm Museum. This is an incredible collection of rare vintage farm tractors, threshers, and other implements, along with a nice car collection. I spotted a few Classics during the tour. Interestingly, almost everything in the museum is for sale.
In the late afternoon, buses departed the hotel for dinner and a show cruise aboard the Branson Belle paddle wheeler. Unfortunately, due to inclement weather and high winds, the ship was unable to cruise, however the dinner was excellent and the show and performers provided fun entertainment.
Day 3 of the meeting once again began with a wonderful continental breakfast following by a Regional Relations Meeting. It was in this meeting that Carrol Jensen was nominated as President and there being no opposition, she conducted her first meeting in that role. Outgoing President Tom Jones was presented with a Past Presidents pin for his service to the Board and National Club.
Immediately following this short meeting, everyone gathered in the hotel lobby for a rather long bus ride to the Evergreen Automotive Collection in Lebanon, Missouri. Owned by Steve Plaster, the collection houses almost 500 rare motorcars representing some 150 makes of cars, mostly convertibles, and many of them Full Classics. A separate room is dedicated solely to Duesenbergs! We were given two hours to explore this collection, however one could have spent many more hours to fully absorb all that was there.
Shortly after returning to the hotel, we departed for the Regional Awards Banquet at the Stormy Point Clubhouse. Entertainment was provided by country music artist Mickey Gilley. At the conclusion of dinner, newly elected President Carrol Jensen, and Vicki Zeiger, head of Regional Relations, presented Special Achievement awards in various categories to a number of Regions, including the SSR Region. Our Region was honored with two awards, and I was pleased to accept on behalf of our Club a 1 st Place in the Membership Award for membership stability and growth, and a 2nd Place in the Chuck Conrad Website Award, finishing only behind the much larger Southern California Region.
The Saturday Grand Classic was a bit shy in numbers but the 14 Classics shown and displayed were of a great variety, quality and interest. The Spirit of St. Louis Region was well represented with four cars entered by our local members. James Daniels from the Kansas City area brought his very rare and unusual 1921 Daniels D-19 Fleetwood Town Car. This car had a lot of original features and was very interesting to everyone at the show. John Gibson’s 1931 Pierce-Arrow Phaeton was a hit as always. Todd Tobiasz drove his beautiful 1936 Cadillac V-8 Convertible Sedan from St. Louis to Branson and back without problems. Todd had two cars at the show as Myrna and I brought his 1931 Cadillac 355A Seven-Passenger Sedan to Branson by trailer and delivered in the convention center Friday evening.
It was a treat for Myrna and I as not only were we the previous owners of this Cadillac, we found that the silver 1936 PierceArrow Seven Passenger Sedan at the show was the same one that was sitting in the same building in Columbus, Ohio in 1983 where we found the Cadillac. It was a fun story to share with its current owner. Other interesting Classics at the meeting were a rare original unrestored 1936 Horch 853 Cabriolet from Osage, Missouri, one of only four Horch in the Classic Car Club. The other Classics included Cadillac, Packard, Marmon, Chrysler, Brewster and Auburn.