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Lots of enthusiasm as truck lovers hold 17th annual meeting

by David Meyer

ARTHUR - Organizers of the annual Classic Ford and Mercury Truck Nationals gathering here on the weekend would not have been surprised to see a someone drop in from Texas.

That’s because they have had a Texan at a previous show.

Classic Ford and Mercury truck lovers were gathered from all across the province on the weekend at the Arthur fair grounds to swap tales of all things Ford and Mercury (trucks only), to buy and sell classic parts needed for restorations, and to show what they have done for their own classic transportation.

Organizer George Tremain said Saturday was a set-up day, featuring a pig roast and an afternoon cruise. He expected anywhere from 150 to 200 trucks for the weekend.

“We’ve been doing this for 17 years,” he said as Pat Fraser, of the Arthur Optimist Club, nodded in agreement.

Tremain said they expected between 1,500 and 2,000 people to come through the gates. All the profits of the weekend went to the Arthur Optimist Club for its community world.

Why Fords?

Fraser said, “We were all brought up on Fords. You stay with what you like.”

Tremain agreed

They expected to see visitors from Mount Forest, Fergus, Elora, Orangeville, and anywhere within 50 miles of the village. They added there were people there from Pembroke, and, Fraser said, “We’ve had them from all over. One year, there was a guy from Texas.”

Fraser said sponsors for draw prizes and sponsors and supporters in general came from across Wellington County and the club is grateful for their support of the event.

Meanwhile on the grounds, the trucks were gleaming. Some of them were even for sale.

Some owners showed trucks that looked like they had just come off the showroom floor, but provided photos of what the original looked like - to demonstrate the care and love of restoration of their owners.

Ray Mitchell, of Hanover, had a 1970 F250 truck for sale. He said it sold brand new for $3,600, but because it is a rare long box style, it has been now appraised at $16,000, though he doubts he can reach that price - unless someone really wants it, or two truck lovers get into a bidding war.

Others on the grounds were polishing and socializing, while visitors were offered all kinds of parts and hood ornaments. One vendor had a huge display of brightly polished hub caps.

There are only three Classic Ford Truck Clubs in Ontario. The other two are the West Coast Chapter in Grand Bend, and one in Haldimand County.


August 26, 2011


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