Meet Organizer Report 2012
As British Invasion XXII fades into history, we are thankful for the support and participation of all who attended what has become the largest All British Motorcar Show in the USA, annually attracting over 600 British Motorcars.
This year the Singer Owners’ Club went all out and attracted twenty-two singers from throughout the USA and Canada. One member came to Stowe from California with three cars. The Singer Club presented an outstanding display of not only cars, but of the history of the Singer marque and once again was presented with the “Car Club Participation Award”. Each year as we leave the Stowe Special Events Field on Sunday at the close of the show, we pause and ask, after this just what will the Singer Owners’ Club do next year, and we have never been disappointed.
The MINI Owners came out in force and represented their marque well. The Automaster was on hand as an Event Sponsor, with an impressive display of New Mini’s For Sale.
2012 also saw the celebration of 50 years of the MGB and the Triumph Spitfire, both of which were well represented in their attendance.
2012 marked our first year with the “Queen’s Court”. The Queen was in attendance and held court over a new Hospitality Tent that featured seating for 150 to 190 people and our first ever Ladies Hat Competition. We had hoped to attract local area vendors who would pamper our ladies by offering tea, chocolates, Ladies Clothing, Messages, Nail Treatments, and more. Maybe next year? We did attract ladies hat and jewelry vendors to the Queen’s Court and outside several local area Craft Vendors, who all promised to return in greater numbers next year.
With the Queen’s Court, supplied by Avalon Tent company, providing seating; a newly recorded selection of British Invasion Music; passed hors d’Oeuvres from Captain Marden’s Seafood; the support of our Beer Sponsor, Monty Python’s Holy Grail and Hobgoblin English Ale; and with the Queen in attendance, the 2012 Registrants’ Reception was our largest turnout to date. The Main Street Party in downtown Stowe on Friday evening bore resemblance to Bourbon Street in New Orleans at the height of Mardi Gras, as Main Street was lined with British Motorcars and partygoers who danced to the beat the Jerry Leone Chop Shop Band.
With the exception of a few brief spats of rain on Saturday the weather cooperated and all who attended seemed to have a great time. We fielded over 600 British Motorcar Cars, of which 24 competed within 8 separate classes in the Concours d’Elegance (our judged Competition), and the rest competed in the British Classic (People’s Choice) which featured over 60 separate classes and presented over 150 class awards. Saturday also saw over 24 creative entries in the Ladies Hat Competition, our first ever. There were British Cars available for purchase in the Car Corral, a cadre of vendors in the British Marketplace, and a variety of Food and Beverage. We featured two mobile food kitchens with The Away Café and Captain Marden’s Seafood, plus an added treat with Jacks’ Wood Fired Pizza. The addition of Stowe Area Craft vendors added a new dimension that was well appreciated by our attendees.
The Sunday morning Smuggler’s Notch Run attracted over 30 cars, many with their tops down as they navigated the narrow twists and turns among the boulder lined road over the summit of Smuggler’s Notch and then on to view rural Vermont as we navigated the 70 minute drive back to the Stowe Special Events Field. On Sunday as we arrived back at the show field, the Back Seat Driver’s Competition was in full swing as blindfolded drivers navigated the road cone lined course directed by the all seeing navigator and of course Chris on microphone to keep the drivers within the established boundaries of safety on this time and accuracy program. While the Backseat Drivers’ Competition was in full swing the Tailgate Picnic Competition saw over 12 entries setting-up and awaiting judgment and awards. Those competing for Best Tasting always seem to attract my interest. Then too, we had over 30 cars who won first place awards on Saturday in the British Classic (People’s Choice Competition) participate in our rolling drive-by review where they were presented with ribbons and had an opportunity to interface with the audience over the microphone and provide insight into their individual cars and their enjoyment of same. Sunday also allowed car show entrants to vote for their favorites cars based in the Competition of Colors, which features the colors of the British Flags (Red, White & Blue), plus British Racing Green, Black, Two-Tone(for those who could not decide which color to paint their car in the first place), and the all inclusive “Rainbow” Class. Food Vendors, Craft Vendors, and Automotive Vendors all reported strong sales and a busy weekend as everyone left for home already making plans to return on the weekend of the 3rd Saturday in September 2013 when Jaguar and Land Rover will be our featured marques.
Michael F. Gaetano