aka Larry L. Daniels and Mary E. Hanson
For those members yearning for a low-key Abingdon type week-end, this is the annual Memorial Day week-end event not to be missed.
Hosted by the Central Illinois Triumph Owner’s Association, and the Prairie Octagon MG Club, this event always has a theme. Friday night started with this year’s theme event, “Dressed to the Nines” with a casino night reminiscent of a 30’s Chicago Speakeasy. Complete with “Enforcers”, yours truly, Whalin Wayne, unfortunately made the mistake of showing disrespect to the down-state Mob, and was dragged to an adjacent alley and whacked unmercifully. My protest “this will definitely will get back to the boys in Cicero” did not lighten the blows.
Last year’s theme included an interactive murder mystery. Next year’s theme will be 2001, a SPACED OUT ODYSSEY. There is an abundance of car shows each and every season. But what sets this apart is the thematic approach that will appeal to ever more demanding car buffs with limited time to attend events each season. These gracious down-state clubs deliver!
Saturday, those from the Chciagoland MG car club, including Diana and Oscar Gonzales, Bill and Sally Hedrick, Curt and Taylor Bork and by the skin of his teeth, Barney Gaylord and son Elliott, and yours truly, attended a cruise/picnic (and the weather very graciously cooperated to a degree). Later that evening a pub crawl was held (of which we did not partake, because Jumer’s Castle Lodge is in walking distance of at least three entertainment spots, which allows late evening imbibing with an “easy crawl” back to your room).
Sunday, again the weather held off, and 142 cars were on the show ground, including a magnificent Daimler once owned by a Kuwaiti Prince. Our favorite marque was well represented with Ed Polonus aqua Magnette receiving the "Queen's Trophy", in essence - "Best of Show", Curt Bork’s stellar TD winning the “Governor’s Trophy”, and “First in Class” (see web-site photos). Whalin Wayne’s revered 76 Midget took a third place trophy as well as some excellent British Tea. Taylor Bork took a trophy in the Stuart Little Car Race. A chip off the old block.
It is not easy to describe the ambience of this event. This older Jumer’s captures an Old World feeling with it’s English theme mural on the outside and inner dark antique décor. The hotel’s University Bar with Bass, Guiness and Weiss Bier on tap served by the delightful bar maid, Mary Rose, satisfies the most discriminating beer enthusiast. Every morning requires breakfast at the 1950’s era “Elite Diner” just down the street, with satisfying omelets and wonderful sausage gravy.
I truly encourage fellow members to try this event. Late Sunday afternoon, after the awards are given and you pull away from the Castle Lodge with one last look, you know another wonderful week-end with your British Car friends has ended. See you next year!
[ed-note] Find nice photos from this show at this web address: