Concours d'Elegance showcases classic rides
The 2018 Forest Grove Concours d'Elegance car show, being held Sunday, July 15, will celebrate Alfa Romeos on the 110th anniversary of the founding
of the famed Italian automaker.
Many at the annual event at Pacific University also are likely to remember the volunteer work of the late Bob McGill, a tireless organizer of the Alfa Romeo Owners of Oregon, when his 1958 light-blue Giulietta Spider Abnormale once again will be on display.
Now owned by Alfa Romeo enthusiast Bill Eastman, Old Blue is very familiar to those who knew McGill, who died in 2011. The Spyder has had only minor modifications since McGill drove it off the lot at Rambo Motors in Northeast Portland in 1958. He and his wife, Margaret, brought it to the annual event for several years, parking it on the tree-shaded campus.
"Aside from the paint and upholstery on the driver's seat, it all came from Italy," says Eastman, who remembers that under McGill's leadership, club membership quickly jumped from a half-dozen to about 200. "He had business cards made up, and would stick one under the windshield of every Alfa he saw."
McGill, who worked for several Portland media outlets, also was a big supporter of the Concours, which is celebrating its 46th anniversary on July 15. One of the most acclaimed classic car shows on the West Coast, it will feature over 300 historic and collector vehicles.
This year's primary theme is "The Passion of Alfa Romeo." The company, which recently returned to the American market, is famous for its historic race and sophisticated street cars.
In addition to McGill's former Spyder, more than 40 Alfa Romeos will be on display, including at least 25 brought by members of Alfa Romeo Owners of Oregon. Among them will be a meticulously restored 1929 6c 1750 Super Sport Zagato owned by Bob Ames of Portland; a red 1931 8c 2300 Monza, which was driven to victory in the 1933 Mille Miglia by celebrated driver Tazio Nuvloari; 1959 Giulietta Sprint Veloce owned by David Salvador of Portland, which recently won People's Choice at the Alfa Romeo Owners of Oregon 50th Anniversary Tour; a 1973 Spider Veloce convertible owned by Jeff and Jeannie Gretz of Hillsboro, who are active members of the local Alfa Romeo Club; and a 1978 Spider Veloce owned by Glenn Dolphin of East Aurora, New York, who got the car from his father and spent the past 18 months fully restoring it with a "slight custom look."
In addition, this year's Concours also highlights 100 years of Chevrolet trucks, including work vehicles. Among those to be displayed are a 1927 Series LM 1-ton truck, owned by John Hardy, from Battle Ground, Washington, which originally was purchased by a great uncle for hauling grain in North Dakota; a restored red 1931 Chevrolet Hose Wagon owned by David Koetje, of Happy Valley, which was in limited fire suppression duty at a California lumber mill until 1990; and a 1931 Chevy half-ton tow truck owned by Stephen Kassis of Lebanon, complete with a working tow boom.
As in recent years, organizers of the event will be assisted by the local hot-rod community, which is sending some of its most stunning modified cars to Forest Grove. Expected big-draw vehicles include "Black Ice," a custom 1934 Ford three-window coupe owned by Jim Stewart of Portland, which took first-place honors at the 2018 Portland Roadster Show; and a 1955 candy-blue Ford F100 pickup, owned by John Rydzewski of Oregon City, which also snagged a first-place award at the 2018 Portland show and a second-place trophy at the World of Wheels custom car show in Chicago.
This year's senior judge will be Nigel Matthews of Vancouver, British Columbia, who is a class judge at the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance and chief judge at the La Jolla Concours d'Elegance and the Pinehurst Concours d'Elegance.
BMW Portland is the 2018 presenting sponsor.
The all-volunteer show, produced by the Rotary Club of Forest Grove since 1973, is the largest and longest-running Concours d'Elegance in the Pacific Northwest. It is the service organization's largest annual fundraiser, with net proceeds divided equally among the club's scholarship program and community service projects. Thanks to the Concours d'Elegance, the Rotary Club of Forest Grove has returned more than $1 million to the community.
If you go
What: The 2018 Forest Grove Concours d' Elegance
When: 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Sunday, July 15
Where: Pacific University's Forest Grove Campus, 2043 College Way
Parking: Street parking and free public lots. Follow the signs.
Cost: Advance tickets are $6-$18.50; gate tickets are $7-$20; kids 12 and under are free