Bill Bowles, in the suspenders, entertained the troops at the Wheels Reunion, demonstrating how wide the hood on his '57 Dodge pickup can open. Bill's ride was one of the earlier featured vehicles that showed up for the event.
Tom Sparkman's beautiful Brandywine '55 Buick picked up one of two trophies handed out by the Wheels Reunion. Eagle Executive Editor Sherry Chisenhall fell in love with the hardtop and gave it the Editor's Choice' award.
Stalwarts braved threatening skies and lined up early for the Wichita On Wheels Reunion last Saturday, filling a block's worth of parking spaces along Waterman. Cars that had been featured on the Wheels page over the last 10 years were invited to the event, a part of the BlackTop Nationals.
Rick Prather's miniature version of his full-sized Divco delivery van was a big draw when the moisture wasn't coming down. The go-kart sized version of the truck was still in the works when the big orange truck was featured on the Wheels page.
Under the hood of the '56 DeSoto beats the heart of a 341 cubic inch Hemi V-8 equipped with a pair of 4-barrel carburetors and an iconic `batwing' air cleaner. This engine compartment is a work of art.
A spectator checks out Bob Weyand's plum-colored '57 Ford from McPherson. The car has grown a high-rise dual 4-barrel intake and a hole in the hood since it was featured on the Wheels page several years ago.
Another of the vehicles exhibited as part of the `Million $ Car Display' inside Century II was Rick Nuckoll's 1967 Shelby GT500, believed to have been owned by the Doors' Jim Morrison. The car had been finished just hours before the BlackTop Nationals opened.
Two of our favorite car folks were on hand to help with BlackTop Nationals -- Marlin and Rose Decker, formerly of El Dorado. They are the ones who launched the popular Burns car show in Marlin's old hometown and took time out from touring in their big motorhome to volunteer for this year's event.
Jack Tanner's nifty Henry J coupe was a welcome addition along the row of Wheels Reunion cars that turned out. Like many of the cars, it was set up with a display of the Wheels page that featured the car.
Tim Bowers of Stellar Antique Auto Restoration in Windom was happy to answer questions about the stunning black-and-gold DeSoto Adventurer he restored to showroom perfection. The car was part of the `Million $ Car Display' inside Century II.
JoEva Wheeler received the Wichita Eagle Publisher's Pick trophy for her recently completed 1939 Chevy sedan, built by her husband, Iran. The trophy presentation was washed out by an afternoon downpour, but JoEva was thrilled with the etched glass trophy.
Parking wasn't a big issue for Kenneth Goering in the little red Bantam roadster he restored for his sister and brother-in-law. But just in case, Ed Garman, who brought his immaculate 1940 Ford coupe over from El Dorado, helped guide the Bantam into place.
This, unfortunately, was how the Wheels Reunion concluded, with a mid-afternoon cloudburst and lightning display that persuaded even most of the diehards to pack it up and head for home. Naturally, the sun came out later and the BlackTop Nationals went on as scheduled.
One of the most memorable of Wheels cars that made the reunion -- the 1952 Ford Fordor custom built by Gary Knox for his late wife, Mary, as an anniversary gift. That's Gary making sure the yellow-gold beauty is presentable at the Wheels Reunion.