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The WPC Club
   Vancouver Island Region

                  Chrysler Products Restorers Club

Established 1981



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Tom McCahill

July 21-23, 2011
WPC Club Vancouver Island Regional Meet 
" Fire Your Engines at the Fort"

We had planned this event for a number of months -  securing the show place,  collecting  door prizes,  ordering and purchasing trophies, dash plaques, arranging banquet facilities and of course ironing out many details along the way.  Two weeks ago I took a few days off work and spent it frantically detailing underhood of my 1960 Chrysler in preparation for the meet, a job I was planning to do last summer but never got around to it.   Even so,  there is still a bit more detailing to be done under the hood!   Maybe this fall,  or next spring. 

Thursday, July 21st, we arrived at the host hotel early in the day to greet arrivals from elsewhere in BC, Washington, Oregon and Idaho as they arrived on site.   One of the best things about these events is renewing acquaintances with old friends each time we get together.   The friendships built over the years are worth vastly more than the old cars that we bring to these meets,  but it's the old cars that has tied it all together.  Without the cars we would not have ever had the chance to make these friendships.   The cars give us much to talk about, and the work involved in putting one of these meets on is well worth the results!  Smiling faces,  laughter, highly visible vintage Chryslers, Imperials, Dodges and Plymouths, and the chance to drive them and show them off are some of the reasons we enjoy this hobby and these events so much. 

On Thursday evening we  had a driver's meeting at 6:30 PM in the hotel parking lot  and then we proceeded on a  drive to  Western Speedway where we held our Slow-Roll Drags in their large parking lot.  If you have never been involved in one of these, let me tell you it take quite a bit of skill.   While there we also enjoyed an ice-cream social.  Many thanks to Maria Wille for hosting us at this facility.  

Friday morning dawned sunny as we left for our tour to the home of Ted and Sharon Forbes, in Sooke,  about 20 miles west of Victoria.   Our leisurely tour took us on a scenic drive out of Victoria and through the rural communities of Metchosin, East Sooke and then into Sooke to the Forbes home.   Their beautiful home is nestled on a hill top and hosts an incredible collection of 25+ vintage 1950s convertibles of Ford and GM makes,  some of which are models sold exclusively for the Canadian Market,  such as Meteors,  and a 1958 Pontiac Parisienne convertible.  Their home is filled with a lot of beautiful collectibles and automotive memorabilia.  We spent nearly 2 hours on site talking cars and reminiscing.    Just before Noon we left their place for a 3 minute drive to the 17 Mile House for lunch.   Leaving there around 1:30 we proceeded to the home of Peter and Tina Wille,  who also host an incredible collection of 19 Mopar Muscle cars on their property in Langford.   If you want to see a lot of Hemis and big Mopar muscle this is the place to see.  Peter also has a full machine shop and paint booth on site and one of the highlights was a tech session where he disassembled a Torqueflite 727 transmission while we watched, assisted by local WPC member Ron Wenzel.  We left around 3:30 PM and headed back to the host hotel.  Some members washed and polished cars to get ready for the car show next day, and took the liberty to eat at a local restaurant etc.   Evening was free. 

Saturday morning dawned clear, sunny and warm and we left the hotel about 8:45 for our drive to the show site,  Fort Rodd Hill, a National Historic Site. This is a Seaside Fort which overlooks the Strait of Juan deFuca, between Vancouver Island and Washington State.   Built to defend the naval base at Esquimalt, Fort Rodd Hill is one of the world’s best-preserved 1890s coast artillery forts.    It was an incredibly beautiful day of sun and clear blue skies in a perfect sea-side setting.   All in all,  there were 102 cars on the grass at final count, with Mopars from the early thirties up to new Chargers and Challengers.    Approximately 45 of the cars were club member cars from BC, WA, OR and ID and the rest were from non club members who dropped in for the day from around the area and elsewhere on Vancouver Island.     The real surprise of the day came near the end of the show.  Many members had left the grass with their cars around 2 PM when a wedding party showed up for photos.  They asked if they could use my 1960 Chrysler Saratoga as a back drop for a few photo shots, as the color of my car (turquose) matched the bridesmaids' dresses (teal).   How could I say no to such a request?  

On Saturday evening club members enjoyed a fabulous catered buffet dinner at the host hotel.   Before and after dinner many door prizes were given out, and the car show awards were passed out to the winners.   Entertainment was the order of the evening as Gary Green,  ventriloquist extraordinaire, and son of our late club founder George Green, and stepson of Rita, gave us a very funny show,  then it was on to the Fabulous Mopar Penta-Star Singers with their renditions of "I'll Drive Away",  "Chrysler Road",  "I'll Make You Shine", "How Much is that Mopar in the Showroom?" and the old standby,  "Ghost Mopars in the Sky"  aka "Hemis and Fins".    The Group consisted of myself on vocals and guitar, with Ron Wenzel, Jon Carson and Gene Kahn backing up.   Wives joined in for harmonies in "I'll Drive Away".   A Lot of fun I must say, judging by the clapping and laughter from the crowd.  Now for next year,  I hear we may have another new one,  "Fluid Drive Chrysler"  based on "Paperback Writer". 

The evening drew to a close all too quickly as the festivities wound down.   We all said our goodbyes to one another and there was an announcement that the Pacific Wonderland Region would be hosting the Northwest Meet for 2012 somewhere in Oregon.    We can't wait!  

Many thanks to all who helped plan and make this a successful meet.    

        -Ian Smale,  president WPC Vancouver Island Region


The first few photos of Ford and GM cars are at our tour to Ted and Sharon Forbes place on Friday morning.

 At the Home of Ted and Sharon Forbes  with their fabulous collection of 50s Ford and GM convertibles and hardtops.


  1958 Pontiac Parisienne convertible.  Looks like a Bonneville but built on a Chevy chassis and drive train so is shorter than a Bonneville.

  1956 Meteor Rideau Convertible

1956 Meteor Rideau Crown Victoria Skyliner  - how rare is that!

Next Few Photos: 

Parking Lot of the 17 Mile House for Friday Lunch

      Arrival at Peter Wille's Mopar Collection,  Friday afternoon.   

This Photo and the rest following:

 The All Mopar Car Show at Fort Rodd Hill on Saturday, July 23rd, 2011

                                        Registration Desk - Shannon and Rita.





PT Cruiser with a 440 and rear wheel drive !

Some Panoramic Views of the Fort and the Car Show area.

                  The Fisgard Lighthouse as seen from the Fort


Some Panoramic Views of the Fort and the Car Show area.

Near the end of our show a wedding party walked in, saw my car and asked to use it as a backdrop for a few photos, as the bridesmaids' dresses were a good match with the car's paint color.    How could I say No?? 

The following photos are from the awards and entertainment banquet

on Saturday Evening at the Comfort Hotel.   Everyone had a wonderful time!