Roy Merritt, the Head Geezer, indulges in some noise-making at the wheel of the Steve Carbone tribute car, a front-engined 1970s-style fuel dragster. It provided plenty of snap, crackle and pop as the staccato sound of the nitro engine ricocheted off the brick walls of Old Town buildings. Warming up a fueler with Merritt at the wheel is becoming something of a tradition at the Geezer Gathering.
Onlookers react as John Prather of El Dorado cracks the throttle on his 1936 vintage 60-horsepower Ford V-8 race car. It was slightly less ear-splitting than the Steve Carbone AA/FD that was fired up a few minutes before.
Sweet and low, this 1950 Ford convertible is owned by Nikki Belford, whose husband, John, is one of the organizers of the Geezer Gathering. The slick ragtop was given to Nikki by her father when she was a teenager and is now in its third incarnation.
Art Sebastian's '68 Chevy stepside pickup provided an example of why these particular trucks are becoming more and more popular with hot rodders. They provide a great palette for automotive customizers.
Last week's featured Wheels page vehicle, Dan Closson's 1928 vintage Chevy grain truck, proved how popular its patio umbrella can be at a gathering of car nuts. That's Dan fourth from the left, surrounded by appreciative buddies.
Danny Lockett rumbled in on his '04 Yamaha Roadster in bright orange pearl metallic livery, looking for all the world like another brand of motorcycle. `Everybody thinks it's a Harley. It freaks a lot of the Harley guys out,' he chuckled.
Can you believe that a few years ago, the 1937 Ford was something of an `orphan car' among street rodders and customizers? Larry King's ultra-clean '37 underscores just what everyone was missing out on.
Terry Scroggin's brilliant red '32 Ford highboy roadster looked ready for the strip or the street with its chopped windshield, moon-style tank between the frame horns and its checkerboard firewall. The Hemi power plant didn't hurt the overall effect, either.
Bill Savage describes his ride as a `1936 rat rod,' so blame him if you don't like that term. The truck will boogey right along at 70 mph on the interstate, thanks to a little Mercury Capri V-6 engine and automatic transmission, he says.
A pair of legendary drag racers, `Kansas John Wiebe' fuel dragster driver on the right, wearing sunglasses, and Bob Riggle, who piloted the `Hemi Under Glass' wheelstander for decades, renew old acquaintances. Riggle just happened to be in town and heard about the Geezer Gathering, so he strolled over to check it out.
Gary Lefever's 1917 Model T touring car only cost $360 brand new. But it is loaded with more than 50 accessory items, such as the funky turn signal/stop/go dial mounted at the left rear. The presidential bumper sticker is pretty nifty, too.
Michael Behrendt's just-finished '34 Ford coupe created quite a buzz with its early '50s Olds engine and Oldsmobile instrument cluster. He had just fired the car up for a first road test and decided to bring it to the Geezer festivities. Look for a full Wheels page feature on this remarkable car soon.
The 2012 Geezer Gathering drew many of the best collector cars and trucks to Old Town for the annual get-together of Wichita area car lovers. As usual, there was no judging, no trophies, but plenty of good-natured razzing among attendees.
Jerry Parks is best known for his black 1931 Chevy coupe, but he recently shined up this 1953 Ford half-ton pickup and fixed up some mechanical issues so he could drive it to the Geezer event. `I've been taking some flak from the Chevy guys,' he admitted.
Photos from Geezer Gatherings of years past were displayed on tables just inside the garage building where the organizers put on a massive feed for participants. Good memories, good food, good combination.
Something you don't see everyday, either on the street or at a car show: A nifty 1968 Ford Bronco in bright aqua trim, slammed down over drag-style wheels front and back. This one was piloted by E. Nelson of Maize.