Checker fans paid a visit on a very hot August Sunday to the Chicagoland Corvair Enthusiasts Orphan Car Show and Picnic. Turnout was low across all makes, three Checkers participated at the event, a low number, yet, we had a bigger turnout than the Studebaker Drivers Club and some other more popular orphan makes.



Over the last several years this famous Chicagoland show has been one of the more popular summer gathering among the various orphan make clubs in the Chicagoland area: Studebaker, Packard, AMC/Nash and Edsel clubs have always showed big in numbers.  A bittersweet event, all who participated knew this 25th anniversary would be the last show, after 25 years the Corvair Club is no longer going to run the event.

Several reasons were provided for this sad ending.  According to the Corvair club newsletter, the club made it very clear that the older club members just don’t have the time and energy to run the meet every summer, essentially the event has become more work than fun.  Show organizer Larry Claypool, lamented that the fact the number of participants has consistently declined over the last ten years and more importantly, the club lost money on last year’s show.

Three Checker arrived early and were told that we would be parked with the other oddball cars. Man, Checkers never get respect, even among orphans we were considered odd.  Odd or not, all day long the three Checkers received a lot of attention.

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Dave Elmore showed in a mint green 1965 Marathon. Dave is the father of longtime Checker fan and automotive writer Chad Elmore.  Matt and Leanne Thomas showed up with the entire young family in tow with their impressive 1965 Marathon. It’s always great to see young kids at any car show, these young ones will someday become the care takers of our cars.  The Thomas car has a high performance GM V8, the rumble it generated was a crowd pleaser.  Joe Fay show in his 1957 Checker Drive-r-matic A8.

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As always visitors generated lots of questions like who produced Checkers and is it a Chevy? As always we smiled and did our best to inform.

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Again thanks to Larry Claypool and The Corvair club for running a fantastic show.