By Mary O’KEEFE
The 14th Annual Montrose Car Show on Sunday offered so many varieties of cars they would boggle even Henry Ford’s mind.
There were vehicles from all eras, from the early 1920s to the modern Tesla. The day was a perfect temperature with a cool morning and not terribly hot afternoon drawing thousands onto Honolulu Avenue.
“Look at this.” “Oh my I haven’t seen one of these in years.” These types of comments could be heard up and down the 2200 to 2400 blocks of Honolulu, but it wasn’t just the cars that made the event special. It was the bond between vehicle and classic car owner, and the enthusiast and the car owners who were more than willing to discuss their love, or obsession, with their pride and joy.
People like remembering the day they saw “that car,” said self professed “car guy” Mark Davis.
“We always hear, ‘My dad had one of those’ or ‘I remember going to the drive-in in one of those,’” Davis said of the comments he hears during car shows.
Davis has been a car guy since his early teens.
“Most car guys are mechanically [inclined],” he said.
He, like his fellow car guys, and girls, is always looking for the next project. He said the motivation to find a specific vehicle is many times nostalgic-driven.
“Something you wanted when you were younger but couldn’t afford, and now you finally have the money to do it,” he said. “It’s not as much about the car as it is the project.”
When Davis sees a car, no matter what condition it is in, he can envision the finished project.
“I think most guys see the end, the finished project,” he said. “If you don’t see the finished project in your head, what’s the point of starting it?”
But there is that “cool factor” that seems to drive those who spend hours, days, months and even years working on their project. What car, to them, is the “it” car? Maybe a Model A, a muscle car or a Mustang.
For Davis, who has had many cars over the years, his “cool car” was a 1972 Firebird.
“I got my driver’s license in 1973,” he said. A friend had a Firebird.
“I wanted one but could afford it,” he said.
“He has his blue Trans Am,” said Davis’ wife Cheryl. “He has basically converted the 1972 Firebird into a Trans Am …He is customizing it the way he wants it.”
Davis purchased his ’72 Firebird about six years ago.
“He built the garage in back of our house for that car,” Cheryl said.
He tore down the one-car garage that was on his property and built an 800-square-foot metal garage that had a car lift, among other attributes.
“I call it his man cave,” Cheryl said. “So two years of the ‘Firebird project’ was building that garage.”
Cheryl said she is not that upset about her husband’s car obsession.
“I know where he is,” she said, which is most of the time in the garage. “And the car guys and [girls] are the nicest people.”
And that is what made the Montrose Car Show so special. The “nicest people” who may be a little obsessive as they polish their cars, trucks and motorcycles but never too busy to talk about their love of the latest “project.”
The winners of the Montrose Car Show can be found at www.cvweekly.com.