A celebration of the American car


November 29, 1992|By STAN DILLON

Americans have a longtime love affair with the automobile. Many have taken older cars and raced them until they won't run anymore, and others either rebuild or modify them for drag racing.

Many restore older cars as a hobby and display them in area car shows. Next Sunday, more than 250 car enthusiasts, many from Carroll County, will display their cars in the third annual Classic/Antique Car Show and Flea Market in the Cow Palace at the Maryland State Fairgrounds in Timonium.

The show, presented by the Street Cars of Desire Car Club, will feature cars from pre-war up to 1972. If you are looking for foreign cars, you won't find them there. It is for American cars and trucks only.

"This is the largest indoor heated car show in Maryland," said Morris German of Westminster, coordinator of the event. "We have a nice variety of antique, custom and muscle cars, along with street rods and pickups in 30 different classes. We have some really nice machines coming to the show.

"The show runs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and the admission is just $3. All the proceeds go to the Caring Program, a health-care program for kids."

jTC The special program provides health care for children whose families earn too little to afford quality health care but too much to qualify for medical assistance. It has been estimated that more than 100,000 Maryland children don't receive any preventive or primary care. The Caring Program is there to catch some of them.

Last year, nearly $50,000 was raised by the car show for the program.

In addition to the Caring Program, the car club has conducted fund-raisers for other organizations, including Toys for Tots and Level Fire Department in Churchville.

Like many members of the club, German, 46, always has enjoyed automobiles.

"I've been around cars all my life. When I was young I worked in a service station in Hampden and worked on drag cars," he said. "I brought a new 1964 Corvette and later brought a 1969 Chevrolet Camaro when I returned from Vietnam. I gave it up when I got married and had kids because I didn't have any money to play with."

Three years ago, German felt the time was right to pursue his interest in cars again. He purchased a 1948 Ford coupe.

"I found the car in Cecil County. I was originally looking for something to rebuild, but the price was real reasonable and it was already restored. Since I wanted to get back in it again, I brought it," he said.

German has returned in a big way. He is restoring a 1951 Mercury for his wife, and his son, Ricky, has picked up his interest as well. The 17-year-old is restoring a 1969 Camaro in auto body class at Westminster High School.

German also joined the Street Cars of Desire and now serves on the board of directors.

The car shows give car enthusiasts a chance to show off their vehicles. Most have thousands of dollars and hours of time invested in them. During the summer, the club has car shows outdoors.

German won't be the only Carroll countian with a car on display Sunday. Other show participants include James Gatuso, Tom O'Farrell and Dale Brown of Westminster, Vaughn Greer of Millers and Daniel Reed of Hampstead.

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