MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Fort Gibson

June 16, 2014

Weekend proves big success for crowd, town

What a great Car Show, along with the Loud Pipe and Burnout Contest, and Cruise we had this past weekend.

The weather cooperated, although it was a bit windy Saturday. We were able to slip between rain storms and have a perfect two days.

The crowd at the Burnout Contest on Friday evening was the largest to date. Noise and smoke filled the air, and the smell of burning rubber was everywhere. Friday evening’s contest is sponsored by Fort Gibson Tire & Wheel and is always a real crowd-pleaser.

Winners were declared when the air had cleared a bit.

Randy Stultz, in his 1972 Chevy pickup, won the Loud Pipe Contest. Randy got a neat trophy, designed and built by Danny Quinton and his crew at Fort Gibson Tire & Wheel, then Randy turned around to join the entries for the Burnout Contest.

Winners of the burnout portion of the evening’s events were: Adam Criner, in his highly modified orange Jeep; Kyle Jones, in a gorgeous 1967 Plymouth Barracuda; and Bob Fowler, in his equally impressive 1923 Ford Bucket T.

Each of the burnout winners got a trophy and $100, which will no doubt go toward new tires.

Following the fun of these two contests, we had some 30 vehicles join us for a “cruise around town,” which started and ended at the Church of Christ parking lot.

At the end, a random drawing was held, and three of the entries each won $50. It was a fun-filled Friday, and a great kickoff to the main event on Saturday.

Saturday morning got started early, as several of the Car Show Committee members met at Boom-a-rang Diner for breakfast, in preparation for a long, but exciting day.

Vehicles started showing up early, and by the 11 a.m. deadline, more than 80 entries had lined the downtown streets. This year’s array of cars, trucks, and motorcycles were some of the best and most unique that we have had to date.

Vendors were lined up west of the stoplight on Poplar Street, offering food, merchandise, and information.

Several local politicians were present, giving out cards, and wooing for votes.

Our local American Legion Post had their smoker set up, which filled the air with that great BBQ smell, and they said they sold a record number of great sandwiches.

There was also a Laser Tag arena set up, along with giant inflatables for the kids to play in. In all, there was something for everyone.

The official start of the contest, started at 11 a.m., with an opening prayer, offered by Muskogee County District Attorney Larry Moore. That was followed by a posting of the colors by Boy Scout Troop 626. Following the Pledge of Allegiance, Carrigan Bradley did an outstanding job of singing the national anthem, to the delight and cheers of the crowd.

Between Friday evening and Saturday, the crowd was estimated at around 5,000. There were plenty of giveaways for the crowd, as our DJ, Chris Mann, played great oldies and crusin’ music. We also had special entertainment from the Band Ser, whose members consist of Britton Vanlandingham, Nathan Walkingstick, Teddy Hammond, and Tristan Hill. They also did a great job of pleasing the crowd, gathered at the gazebo in Centennial Park.

New this year was a “People’s Choice” award for one of the entries, based on the votes of the crowd. Winner of this distinction was Chad Maplethorpe, and his unbelievable silver 2013 Jeep JK. It has so many options, with its lift kit and large tires, that it looked like it could climb a telephone pole. He got a special trophy and $100 for his entry.

Trophies were given out to the top 50 entries, judged by David Morgan  and his crew.

We then presented the “Best of Show” 5-foot trophies and $500 to each winner in the car, truck, and motorcycle division.

Winner of the “Best of Show” for the motorcycles was Gary Nowlin, with his black-and-red 2013 Harley Davidson Panhead Bobber.

Winners of the “Best of Show” for the truck division were David and Cindy Bonicelli, and their modified 1931 Model A Truck, painted a beautiful orange.

The winners of the “Best of Show” for the cars were Larry and Maggie Jenkins, with an unbelievable black and beige 1953 Buick Super, 454 Big Block convertible. All of this year’s entries were outstanding and made the show one of our best.

It is time to thank the many people who helped make this year’s event outstanding.

First, our sponsors. Our major sponsors were Cherokee Nation-Fort Gibson Casino, the Town of Fort Gibson, and the Fort Gibson Chamber of Commerce.

Other major sponsors included Fort Gibson State Bank, Armstrong Bank, Fort Gibson Tire & Wheel, and Larry Moore.

Special sponsors were SonBurst Graphics, Keith Hardware, Wayne’s Muskogee Auto Trim, OG&E, McDonald’s Fort Gibson, and Tahlequah City Hospital, Clinkenbeard Agency-Steve Clinkenbeard, along with help from Valu-Med Pharmacy, Charlie’s Chicken, Fort Gibson Chiropractic, Perry Financial Services-Budo Perry, Edward Jones Investments-Mark Young, Dr. Michael Nelson DDS, Clifford D. Garrett Family Funeral Home, Harp’s Food Store, Ken Doke, and Faith Based Therapeutic Community Corporation.

Without the help and financial support of these sponsors, our show wouldn’t happen. We truly tip our hat to them.

We would also not have an event, without the help of our many volunteers.

First and foremost, my wife, Kathy Perkins, who makes everything I do easier, along with the help of Cheryl Hill; Tonia Cooper; Justin Young; David Perkins; Carman Garrett, Cliff Garrett, and both their children Carson and Camryn; Steve Clinkenbeard; Denise Bain; Mark Young; David Perry; Charles Dortch; Justin Calvert; Scott and Sandy Atkinson; Wayne Harshfield; Steven Hill; Mark Seabolt and the members of the Fort Gibson FBTCC; and Miss Fort Gibson, Rachael McElmurry, whose dad had my favorite in the show, a 2007 Shelby GT 500 Cobra Mustang, and who helped us sell out of our “official T-shirts” for the first time.

I also need to thank the Fort Gibson Fire Department and the Fort Gibson Police Department, along with the Town of Fort Gibson, for all the help and support they give us both days of the event.

In all, it was a fabulous 20th Annual Fort Gibson Car, Truck, & Motorcycle Show, and we can’t wait until next year’s 21st Annual.

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