As of th
is writing, we, along with about 37 million other people, are in the hottest dog days of 2023. Here in South Florida, we reached the hottest temperature in three years. While there are still some car events happening here over the summer months, generally most of the action, at least in Jaguar circles, is happening way North. Jaguar Clubs of North America (JCNA) concours, rallies and slaloms are in full swing in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinois and New York State. Being a former Northerner (Canada counts as the Great White North), I’m always interested in hearing about the great shows that are happening there while we’re sweating here.
One of the best is the May Concours d’Elegance at the Susquehanna Valley Jaguar Club in York, Pennsylvania. This was the show that “opened” the JCNA season for us in the Northeast. Held at the Sunset Lane Park, the event provides loads of space on grass and tons of parking (including trailers) which means that serious Jaguar collectors and participants bring out their finest to compete for top position in their class and points towards Regional and National Concours championships. This year, Ohio friends George Keller and Dave Morgan made the trek from Columbus to York to partake in the competition and camaraderie that symbolizes the Susquehanna Valley event. Coinciding with Memorial Day, Club President Dave Hershey and team arranged for a Pipe and Drum group to deliver a very rousing delivery of era-appropriate music. A diverse collection of Jaguars competed this year, with everything from the 1934 SS-1 owned by Leonard Fiore, Ron Gaertner’s 100-point XK-120 and Pat Geary’s fabulous XKE in Signal Red. Congratulations to Dave Morgan and his perfect-scoring 2009 XKR!
Next stop, Hudson, Ohio. On July 8th, the Northeast Ohio British Car Counsel hosted a 250+ event loaded with British classics, food, vendors on the corporate grounds of Joanne Fabrics. Our travelling road warriors, George Keller, Dave Morgan and Jim Baker were there to act as roving photographers for The British Marque. Thanks to Jim for the great pics. And congratulations to Best of Show Winner, Robert Seyler, from Westlake, Ohio with his 1956 XK 140. Another Jaguar takes gold!
Another biggie and fan favorite is the Arthritis Foundation Classic Car Show in Dublin, Ohio. This show started 40 years ago and continues to be one of the largest, most appreciated charitable car show events in the region. Approximately 1,000 classic vehicles took part in this very popular event, with judging based on a formal 100-point system and conducted by passionate volunteers who were eager to do their best and give to a great cause. I recall attending this show many times where the excitement was palpable and the shortage of hotel rooms very real. Cheers to the champagne “tours” in our rented golf cart that made getting around much more fun. We met Butch Patrick (“Eddie Munster”) there a few years ago with his cool Munstermobile. In those early days, the Jaguar Club of Ohio’s Buckeye Buggy was a place to grab a cold one in air-conditioned splendor. This year, George K and the gang held their own “show within a show” with Jaguars gathering in their own class which allowed for some special judging. Amongst the Jags that dotted the main drag of the event included several E-Types and George’s XKR GT2 Racecar. It wasn’t that long ago that the show also boasted the best fresh barbequed walleye, courtesy of the incomparable Larry Dixon. While nothing stays the same, it’s great to see that this special show carries on. Every year it seemingly gets even larger (so much so that I see Hagerty has a presence).
Another great show is the much beloved Carolina Jaguar Club Concours d’Elegance, labelled “Head to the Mountains”, in Little Switzerland, NC. You can almost hear the yodeling coming from the event, nestled along the Blue Ridge Parkway. This event is now in its 16th year in its current location. More than just a Concours, the Friday night event featured Richard Lentinello, former Editor-in-Chief of Hemming Motor News and current editor of Crankshaft, his own collector car magazine. There was also a rally GTA (Game, Tour, and Adventure) for those wanted to enjoy the beautiful roads in this part of the country. Of course, our roving reporters, George Keller and Jerry Wise, provided the beautiful pictures for this edition of British Marque. Congrats to Ron Gaertner and team for a wonderful event!
Thanks to the Ohio boys and Tallahassee Jerry for giving us a glimpse into the shows that we, hot and sticky Floridians, are unable to attend! What until November!!