For 56 years, Das Awkscht Fescht has been a summer tradition for all ages. Offering three fun-packed days in the great outdoors, it’s been a perfect way for families to celebrate summer and see some of the finest antique cars from the east coast. Members of the ICTA have been participating in this event for a least 20 years!
Long time Checker fan Don McHenry first started attending Das Awkscht pulling his antique show car with his family Checker back in the 70’s. Purchased new in 1961, by the 1980’s Don’s trailer pulling Superba wagon ultimately became a show car too!
Through the years more Checker fans have joined the Checker fun in Pennsylvania. Checker fans like Christian Hutter, Bruce Uhrich and Victor Coiro have made the Sunday show a significant Checker event. Over that last three years, ICTA members have had a big impact and each year this event has increased in Checker participation. More importantly, the ICTA now dominates this event with active Checker taxicab owners.
On Saturday ICTA members Christian Hutter and his son Gavin entered the field with their pristine 1978 A11. The only Checker on display on Saturday, many of our blog readers may remember that Chris celebrated a big win with AACA judged Checker at the May 2018 ACAA event near Pittsburgh.
On Sunday Christian arrived first as always around 7:30 before the gates opened. This writer was also on hand with my 1950 Checker Model A4. Ben Merkel and Pete Talanca convoyed in with the A4 in a beautiful gray 82 Checker A12e.
Twenty minutes later we were joined by ICTA members Marjorie and Bruce Uhrich, who made the drive from Philadelphia in their stunning 1956 Checker Model A8 Standard. The best part of their arrival was directing the old 1956 Model A8 Standard in green and yellow livery next to the 1950 Model A4 in like green and yellow livery! Of course Bruce placed the vintage taxi stand sign between both cars.
This years set up took less than 30 minutes, Chris Hutter main tent went up quickly, the new ICTA end row flags and banner were set up to showcase our Checkers and club experience. This years showcase really allowed for leveraging the Checker brand as a collector car.
Bruce Urhich positioned he “Taxi Stand” sign between the A8 and A4. It was amazing to seem many families use that stand as family photo opportunity!
Our old friend Victor Coiro soon joined the party with his 78 Checker A11. Interesting to note, Victor’s Checker has appeared in many movies and despite being a 78, it sports a pre 74 Checker chrome bumpers.
We also had some “walk in” Checker fans. It was great to see Bob Ferdon on Sunday. Bob most notably participated in the Lawrence Checker salvage operations headed by Daniel Smith. Our ICTA members have watch Bob restore one of the former Clearwater Checker cars. Bob’s restoration project has also netted some additional Checker interchange data. Jim Roger’s Senior join along with his wife. They plan to drive a restored Checker to the event next year!
Shortly after the Uhrich’s arrival Jim Rogers & Nicole Rogers arrived with their family in their classic NYC A11. Best described as war torn, the Rogers A11 is always a crowd pleaser. In tow were the Roger’s two boys. Christian Hutter’s wife Colleen and daughter Ava joined the show later in the day. The future of the Checker hobby needs to be passed on to a new generation, its great to see young families enjoying there Checkers.
Tony Mattern and his wife along with Ed Fox and his family joined later in the morning to cap off a total of eight Checkers in attendance. All the Checker participants seemed to have a great time, showing Checkers, viewing other classic and socializing under the tent, some even were seen enjoy spirits at the Beer tent!
We’ve loaded about 100 pictures into an album on our Facebook page. We’ve also posted a quick video on Youtube, just click on the picture below and the full video can be views.
If you would like to come to Das Awkscht Fescht for 2020, just click on the email address in the top right corner and we’ll get you connected. Maybe we can pull twenty Checkers in next year!