Turtle Beach Picnic & White Elephant Gift Exchange

Jeryl Schriever proudly displays her “gift”: a potty training talking pink flamingo. Amazingly, it was subsequently claimed by Bernie Evans for his one-year-old granddaughter. Jeryl was much relieved (no pun intended).

One of the club’s longest running, and most popular, events is the January 1st picnic and white elephant gift exchange, also traditionally held in the pavilion at Turtle Beach, Sarasota. Due to the pandemic, this year’s edition was deferred until April 10. Although the numbers were down a bit this year, we still had 35 members and about 15 LBCs present. The club provided pizza. 

A White Elephant Gift Exchange is a popular holiday event where people vie to walk away with the best present. The rule for our club regarding competition for the most desirable gift is: Two swaps (steals), the gift is no longer available and the current holder gets to keep it. There is no rule for the type of gift. It can be funny, which might get a good laugh, but is not always the most desirable item. It can be weird or unusual, such as artwork or gadgets. These can be highly sought after, particularly if they are car-related. It can also be a genuinely nice gift, which has the potential to fuel competition. Examples from the past include quality bottles of wine. The one quality all gifts should have, however, is that they should be interesting.

Two very popular gifts that were retired (2 swaps) this year were a MINI model car with clock and an encyclopedia of automobile manufacturers. Although not held as usual during the holiday season, this year’s event was deemed just as much fun as in previous years.

Thanks to Jim Wilson and Bruce Skaggs for additional input. Photos by the author

37th Annual All British Car Show

Cars benefitting from placement under one of the many shady live oaks at the location of the show in Sanford, Florida.

On April 2, the Central Florida British Car Club hosted this show in Sanford, Florida. A number of SBCC members had planned to make the 155-mile trek to participate but the weather forecast for that Saturday was threatening. However, Bruce and Carolyn Skaggs along with Jim and Debbie Wilson decided to brave the conditions. The gamble paid off because both couples brought home some show hardware, and the rains conveniently came AFTER the show. Bruce reported that their 2006 Jaguar XK8 garnered a 2nd in class while the Wilsons placed third in the TR6 class. Bruce further noted that it was a nice event .

Bruce provided the photos of the SBCC cars; the others are courtesy of the Central Florida club’s website.

Car Show for The Gator Wilderness Camp School

By a vote of the student-campers of The Gator Wilderness Camp, Jay Royce was awarded the trophy for Most Popular Car, his 2015 Jaguar F-Type.

On March 27, the club was joined by the staff and student-campers of the Gator Wilderness Camp for a car show and picnic lunch, just off Fruitville Road in Sarasota. This event is a legacy of Duane and Ellen Magnuson who began hosting it annually 10 to 12 years ago on the grounds of their Sarasota home. It was one of the more popular events on the club’s calendar until suspended due to the pandemic, coinciding with the couple’s untimely passing. Thus, it was great to see such an enthusiastic turnout upon its return. Our 29 vehicles were joined by some members of the local Antique Automobile Club (AACA), bringing the total count to 35 cars and 50 plus members. The school cadre brought their entire population of 30 boys, plus all the fixings for a grilled lunch!

The Gator Wilderness Camp in a faith-based year around camping program for boys 11-15. According to their website, “This group of boys is significantly struggling to interpret a myriad of issues in their families, schools and communities.” Translation: Some come from a difficult home life and some have run afoul of the law. The camp school is located on 250 acres in Charlotte County, really in the “middle of nowhere” in southwest Florida. It’s seen as an alternative to placement in a government social services program, to include the juvenile detention system. The boys must apply to be accepted. The costs are covered by the church and donations from the public. There is no cost to the Florida taxpayer. 

Back to March 27. Part of the day’s activities consist of the lads going from to car to car and sitting in the driver’s seat where they can start and rev up the engine. Then, they vote for the car they like best. This year’s winner of the club trophy was Jay Royce and his 2015 Jaguar F Type. While this was going on, the camp counselors grilled burgers and hot dogs. After lunch, the boys were challenged to design their own car. Judges selected the winning drawings and the club awarded trophies to the designers. It’s likely this may have been the first time some of these boys have ever won anything and the joy on the faces of those holding the trophies was priceless. Note to car owners for next year: A large number of the boys’ designs depicted flames coming out of the rear of the car. While this is probably best avoided real-life in a picnic setting, a raucous exhaust is clearly a plus in the running for the most popular car trophy.

Credits: Bruce Skaggs for report input. Photos from Pat Kelly, and also Bruce.

Hagerty Car Show at Sebring

Cars lined up for judging at the Hagerty Car Show held at the Sebring International Racetrack on February 26, 2022. That’s Jim Wilson’s 1973 TR6 in the foreground.

On Saturday, February 26, six members in five cars drove the hour and a half to the Hagerty Cars and Caffeine Car Show at the legendary Sebring International Racetrack in the middle of the state. The car show added to the festivities of a weekend of racing organized by the Sportscar Vintage Racing Association. This event drew a large number of vintage race cars from all eras, makes and models. 

Jim Wilson was one of those who made the trip from the Suncoast and he reported: “There were 130 collector cars in the car show, including those from our club: two TR6’s, a Jaguar XK8, a Lotus +2S 130, and a MINI Cooper Monte Carlo. Members did some track touring and Mike Browne won a ribbon for his MINI. We saw all models and years of cars including a 1967 Aston Martin DB6 with 16,000 miles on it. It was all original and it sounded great when it drove up. Very few at the event had any idea what this DB6 was worth. We also were treated to vintage sports car racing taking place all day long. The weather was perfect, making it was a great ‘car guy’ day.”  

I asked Mike Browne for details on his award. He related that because there were so many different kinds of cars, judging by marque would have been almost impossible. And, no doubt, requiring dozens of ribbons from the sponsor. Mike said the award he received was for “Best in Class” for import car within a particular year timeframe. Congratulations to Mike on the award for his MINI !

Many thanks to Mike and Jim for the input on this event. Photos also supplied by Jim Wilson.

SBCC 1st Annual Car Show

The parking lot at Rattan, Wicker and Cane in Venice, Florida is awash with a variety of British automotive marques and plenty of spectators at the club’s own car show.

February 20, 2022, will be forever remembered (for those of us on Prevagen) as the date of the first Annual Suncoast British Car Club Car Show. Graciously hosted by Woody and Diane Schaub in the parking lot of their fine furniture and furnishings store in Venice, the show featured an impressive turnout of 35 members’ cars. Thanks to the work of show organizers Bruce and Carolyn Skaggs, this initiative was a huge success. The weather was perfect and it was a great opportunity to catch up with long time members as well as getting to know five new members.

There were three classes for judging. The oldest class had the largest number of entries and awards were made as follows:

First, Bob Faria’s ’34 Austin 7 Nippy. (File Photo)
Second, Bill Isenstein’s 1973 TR6
Third Place was Jerry Jurgensen’s 1973 Lotus Europa. [Photo provided by Cathy Jurgensen. That’s their border collie, Dakota, who navigates by sense of smell.]

Awards in the other two classes were:

First, Mike Browne’s 1994 Rover MINI Cooper
And, First for Ron McLeod’s 2001 Jaguar XK8. 

Unfortunately, the specially commissioned trophies were held up by “supply chain issues” and were to be awarded later. 

About two dozen of the participants then moved on to a late lunch at the Tarpon Point Grill & Marina on the Myakka River in South Venice. All in all, a great day to be alive and out, especially if you were in your LBC with the top down.

Thanks to Bruce Skaggs and Jim Wilson for input on details, as well as Bill Isenstein and Joe Malaney for some of the photos. 

Additional photos from the day are below: