Monday, September 3, 2007

Editor's Notebook - Sept 2007

AFTER CAREFUL CONSIDERATION, THE CTCC BOARD has decided to authorize what I term a FACELIFT for Bird-News! Our revised format is the result of Bob Hoge's offer to have his bank, the Valley Community Bank (VCB), provide the printing service in exchange for a one-half page advertisement in our newsletters. This inaugural issue is another step in the history of mimeographed copies (1962) followed by printed, electronic typewriter and computerized versions in subsequent years. Our thanks to Bob for his contribution!

As noted on page 9, CTCC members and Dick and Jill Burdette join the "Tennessee T-Bird brigade!" The exodus already includes the Anthony's and the Jurkonie's, while the Wrigley's have relocated in Missouri!

For those readers who might have had an interest in owning a De Lorean, there still might be hope, since all existing parts have been purchased by a new owner. The tentative plans project the production of some 500 more Back-to-the-Future cars!

As of August 23rd, CTCI reports that International membership now stands at 6,091.

Under the heading of, Who Really cares, while Tulsa, Oklahoma officials try to locate the winner of the ill-fated (1957) burial of the Plymouth Belvedere, scientists are eager to compare the 1957 gas to present gas. (There were 2-cans of gas stored with the entombed Plymouth.) Ken Smizinski, tired of sifting through the minefield of info on the problem of zinc reduction in many motor oils, finally made telephone contact with an engineer! The news is good; details in October.

The third edition of the Geneva Concours (August 26th) found absolutely perfect weather as CTCC had representation by the Pavlak's '55 and the Kramer's '56. Pete Kramer won Best-in-Class! The Werth's and Kelly's were on-the-scene, as we viewed/photographed the impressive field of vehicles.

-- Ed., Bird-News

Bird-News Wins Gold


As Editor, I have tried to maintain a high-level of content related to the classic T-Bird with an occasional, non T-Bird story of general automotive interest. Thanks to our members for their contributions in making the achievement of this award possible!
-- Ed., Bird-News

August 7, 2007
Hi - Bert and Jane:
Hope all is well. You did it again, Bert! A Gold Award for the BIRD-NEWS. Congrats! The Jurkonie's and Anthony's participated in the Region 1 [CTCI] Convention in New Jersey. Perry's car won a Silver Award, so very close to a Gold. Bill's Bronze 'Bird, which now has a White Hard Top, won his first-ever Gold Award! We had fun and wish other CTCC members could have attended. Hello to all, Take care.
-- Sharon & Bill Jurkonie

August 9, 2007 5:26:35 P.M. Central Daylight Time
The Regional in NJ was excellent. Both the Jurkonies and we represented the Chicago club and were pleased to do it. We were the only ones from CTCC.
The event was a masterpiece in managing details for an exceptional Regional, with numerous people involved from this chapter of less than 40 members. The attention to detail was most appreciated and evident to most.
Bill and Sharon have worked enormously on their Bronze '57 and it looked just great ... so great it took a GOLD. Very deserved. Our "new" gunmetal also did well with a Silver, which is always good for a first time concours, I think.
We both trailered our cars, mostly without incident, although the lousy roads in Pennsylvania took a huge chunk from one of my trailer tires! We replaced it right on the concours grounds.
I took many old parts "for sale" from years of collecting and people seemed to really like the old original parts that I had ... especially the original FORD boxes. You can cancel my ad in "BN" for parts as nearly everything is gone.
A highlight of the evening was hearing your name ... and CTCC ... recognized for the newsletter. A GOLD to boot! Congratulations to you and Jane for all the hard work you put in. Bill J accepted the plaque on your behalf and I understand he has sent it to you.
Our best to everyone.
-- Perry [Anthony]

Congratulations on your award for the newsletter. You do a great job and I enjoy receiving it.
Bob Bowie
Editor - Metroplex Early Birds
Dallas/Ft. Worth, Texas

"Hello my name is ..." CTCC Name Badges available

If you wish to order a magnetic CTCC Name Badge(s), send the information along with a check (payable to CTCC) to:
Liz Werth
22W413 Ironwood Drive
Glen Ellyn, IL 60137

$2.00 each badge for New Members
$6.50 each badge for long-standing Members

PRINT Member Name, City [for tag) ____________________________________________

PRINT Spouse/Other, City [for tag) ____________________________________________

PRINT Your Address: [for mailing tags) _________________________________________

Welcome New Members

We are pleased to announce the addition of new members into CTCC.

Dave and Robyn Havell of Arlington Heights, also Dave and Marian Pogorski of Naperville join our ranks.

Take note that Dick and Jill Burdette have a change of address to Rogersville TN.

CTCC Annual Picnic 2007

IT WAS A GREAT DAY FOR T-BIRDS AND T-BIRDIES! Thanks to the Burhops, CTCC Picnic signs were positioned at key intersections long before 11:00 a.m., the scheduled start of this popular event. Pratt's Wayne Woods was again the site of this year's edition of an outing that has been a part of the CTCC events calendar for more than 40 years.

By 10:30, the Burhops, Keils and Liz Werth were already on-the-scene, arranging the picnic and serving tables. (Bill Werth was away on a fishing trip somewhere in the wilds of Canada.) The "reserved" T-Bird parking area (near our "rented" Pavilion-for-a-day) soon filled, and a few members had to park their 'Birds/cars across the roadway. It was a colorful sight to see some 15 classic T-Birds "on-display!" In addition, there were three modern 'Birds and a beautiful 1939 Ford Convertible Coupe, the latter owned by Len and Irene Vinyard.

photo caption: Chicken Is Served! The CTCC food line formed a nanosecond after Ken Smizinski's arrival with the supply of Popeye's chicken! Ravenous appetites were soon assuaged.

Naturally, conversations - T-Bird related and otherwise - raged on as we awaited the arrival of our featured entree, Popeye's Chicken! Ken and Kathy Smizinski arrived to survey the turnout - some 40 plus persons. Ken then made his (now famous) "Chicken Run," and he returned at about 12:30 p.m. with the tubs of chicken. The sight of the loaded food-table energized the members to line-up to partake in the tasty chicken and wide-assortment of salads and side-dishes. Kathy had been busy setting a charcoal fire, in order to have hot coffee ready by dessert time! It turned out that "sales" were few, no doubt influenced by the warm day, the prediction having been for a high of 92 degrees!

While we were enjoying the bountiful food offerings, it was impossible to miss the constant parade of official police and Forest Preserve vehicles that slowly cruised by our gathering spot. (CTCC reserves the Pavilion site - $75 - as soon as permitted, in order to guarantee availability for the following year.) As the day progressed, a bicycle rider approached the Pavilion, the "security" person obviously intent on a close-up inspection for any signs of alcoholic beverages! Later on, I discovered a Lite beer-bottle cap imbedded in the walkway, clear evidence that some prior group had violated the strict rule banning alcohol. Naturally, almost every Preserve visitor driving by the colorful collection of two-passenger T-Birds slowed down to take-in-the-scene. I watched as two horseback riders passed the lineup, imagining that they were comparing their "horsepower" to that represented by the fleet of Thunderbirds....?

Dessert-time arrived, and it was no less spectacular than the flavorful assortment of food items we had just enjoyed. The table featured cookies, brownies, fruit salad in a watermelon shell, raspberry bars, plus other assorted treats. From a strictly personal point-of-view, the creme de la creme of the dessert offerings was the Award Winning coconut layer-cake made by Paul Mounts! Having missed out on this fantastic (to die for!) treat last year, Paul made certain that I received the first slice - along with a cup of coffee! Thanks for the special effort by a "special guy!"

Unlike last year, members opted not to engage in any "lawn games," in spite of the fact that croquet and Jarts were available. Thankfully, the Pavilion provided shelter from the sun, and, at times, it even managed to help create a cooling breezeway effect.

A few members left following our "feast, " having other commitments for the late afternoon/evening. It was at about this time when a "long-lost" couple made their appearance! What a pleasant surprise to see Perry and Cindy O'Kano after lo, those many years! They were able to renew some old friendships - and enjoy a sampling of our delicious picnic fare. The O'Kano's membership dates back to about 1980.

Len Vinyard's 1939 Ford Convertible drew many admirers, prompting Len to outline the highlights of his 85hp V-8 engine, with emphasis on its continued dependability! Rudy Budach likewise attracted quite a gallery of members interested in knowing the almost unbelievable story of his "personalized" 2002 T-Bird. Rudy only recently acquired ownership of this Red beauty, the odo showing only 4.800 miles! Now, dressed-up with a customer (after-market) dual tonneau set-up (ala the 1962/1963 Thunderbird sports Roadsters), it is definitely a head-turner.

Most everyone had departed the Preserve by about 3:30, so another group quickly laid claim to "our" facility. We lingered to visit and recall old-times with the O'Kano's, then fired-up the 'Bird for the 9-mile trip home. This was a truly enjoyable get-together, with good food and most importantly, good friends. While it is our love affair with the 'Birds that brings us together, the essence of the Club is the wonderful friendships that are formed, and the numerous opportunities for camaraderie.

Participants in this year's edition:

Bill and Jane Balogh, Rudy and Janet Budach, Bob and Marcy Burhop, Steve Davajon, Bert and Jane Eisenhour, Pete and Lisa Ekstrom, Ed and Marleen Ficenec, Mickey Ficenec, Joel Greenberg and Annie Luginbill, Brad, Jan and Paige Hanson, Art and Gail Hascek, Laura Hascek and Mike Cielenski, Bob and Helen Hoge, Larry Johnson, Len and Mary Keil, Larry and Karen Kelly, Pete and Marylu Kramer, Paul and Ursala Mounts, Dan and Joan Mrozek, Perry and Cindy O'Kanto, Ken and Kathy Smizinski, Len and Irene Vinyard, Liz Werth, Jim Wilson.

FOOTNOTE: Interestingly, the front page of Monday's Kane County Chronicle featured an article on Pratt's Wayne Woods Forest Preserve! No, it didn't feature our Thunderbirds, but recorded the discovery of a mastodon tooth (2005) and more recently, a tusk from this huge, prehistoric mammal. St. Charles high School students are involved in this archaeological dig.

-- Bert and Jane Eisenhour

CTCC Fall Tour 2007 planned

Classic Thunderbird Club of Chicagoland Fall Tour
SAVE THE DATE -- October 5 - 7th 2007

Destination - Springfield, IL
Tour focal point - The NEW Lincoln Museum
Tour Coordinators - Len and Irene Vinyard
(847) 397-2656 or Cell (847) 858-0352 E- Mail:

Some possible stops along the way:
Pontiac, IL ....... New Rte. 66 Hall of Fame
Bloomington, IL ....... David Davis Mansion (Davis Home of Abraham Lincoln's Supreme Court Appointee)
Shirley, IL .... Funk's Gem & Mineral Museum
Springfield, IL ..... Major Tour - Abraham Lincoln Museum
Dana Thomas Homes - Prairie Style of Frank Lloyd Wright

Drury Inn & Suites, 3180 S. Dirksen Pkwy, Springfield - (217) 529-3900
Rate: $70.19 + Tax

All room's are under the name of Irene Vinyard, T-Bird Club of Chicago with Various confirmation numbers. When calling, give my name and MAKE sure that they change the Credit Card number to your Credit Card and that they give you a confirmation number.

Then - Please let us know you're registered.

CTCC Wisconsin Day Trip Tour planned


Meet and Leave from The Road Ranger parking lot (1-90 & Route 20 in Hampshire) at 8:00 a.m.

Cruise to Millie's Restaurant in Delavan, Wisconsin for a great breakfast!

Then we will cruise through Lake Geneva, via Snake Road (A designated Rustic Road), past the former Wrigley estate.

photo caption: Onward to Millie's for a great breakfast.

On to East Troy, Wisconsin for a trolley ride and tour of the East Troy Electric Railroad.

Then on to The Elegant Farmer for an unusual shopping experience.

Cruzin' on, we will then stop at the square in downtown Woodstock, Illinois for a late lunch.

Then we all head home!

Call Bob or Helen Hoge for a reservation (630) 377-3330.

Cantigny Car Show in September

2nd Annual Cantigny Car Show
Sunday, September 23, 2007 - 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM

Open Classes - Over 40 Awards Presented at 3:00 PM
Limited to 500 Entries - Rain or Shine

Need a registration form? Click here.

Call (630) 260-8207 for more information or to register over the phone.

Cantigny Park
1S151 Winfield Road
Wheaton, Illinois 60187

photo caption: Cantigny Car Show, Sunday, Sept 23rd, 2007.