The SVRA Sebring SpeedTour is Coming to Town!

Clear your calendar for February 23-26, 2023!

Greetings Cruisers! The winter months here in south-central Florida are the best time of year. That’s why we have so many snowbirds fly south to escape the cold nasty stuff up north. It’s also a great time for racing and car shows!

The SVRA SpeedTour will be coming to Sebring International Raceway on February 23-26, 2023. Tickets are $50, and available ONLY by phone. Call Toni Strollo at 863-698-8620 to buy your tickets. The ticket price is $50 for ONE car and TWO people.

ATTENTION CRUISERS!!! You can get $20 off the price of your ticket by mentioning Lake Country Cruisers when you call Toni Strollo.

The discount offer is good till the end of December, ONLY.

SVRA events are awesome for two big reasons. Continue reading “The SVRA Sebring SpeedTour is Coming to Town!”

Drone Video Tour of Rick Hendrick’s Car Collection and Racing Facility!!!

A “Fly’s Eye” tour of an AMAZING place for car lovers.

Greetings Cruisers! It seems that whenever Car Guys & Gals get together at shows, the name “Rick Hendrick” always pops up. Hendrick has not just an extraordinary collection of cars, but his racing facility is world-class.

This video is cool because it’s a flying drone tour. I’m sure it was as much fun to record as it is to watch, although it is rather speedy.

That’s why I’m including another video that is more of a walk-and-talk.

And just a reminder that our December Car & Bike Show (for this month only) will NOT be at the Lake Placid American Legion. We will be at the Lake Placid Historical Society Train Depot in downtown Lake Placid. We will be back at the American Legion on January 14.

The Car & Bike Show will run from 10 am to 2 pm. The $5.00 entry fee will be donated to the Lake Placid Historical Society Train Depot.

This will be quite a day, as the U.S. Sugar Express Santa Train will be coming to town, the Farmer’s Market will be open for business, and that evening the Annual Lake Placid Christmas Parade will deliver miles and miles of smiles and good cheer! The parade starts at 7:00 pm.

Lake Country Cruisers will be IN THE PARADE again! If you’d like to be in the parade with up, it’s not too late to sign up! E-mail Scott at… lightoak@comcast.net. For details and maps, CLICK HERE!

As of Monday, we have nine Cruisers that have signed on to be in the parade. Continue reading “Drone Video Tour of Rick Hendrick’s Car Collection and Racing Facility!!!”

Lake Country Cruisers Shirt Shop is OPEN for Business!

Lake Country Cruisers Shirt Shop is OPEN for Business! CLICK HERE!!!

Greetings Cruisers! Our “Shirt Shop” has been in the works for over a year and is finally live! CLICK HERE to enter!

The Shirt Shop has 15 different designs in various styles.

All shirts start at $19.99, plus shipping. We have dark-color shirts and light-color shirts.

Sizes run from Small-to-5XL.

CLICK HERE to enter!

In 2023 we will be adding coffee mugs using the same graphics used on the shirts.

We will also be adding long sleeve t-shirts and sweatshirts.

Motorcycle shirts will be coming soon! CLICK HERE to enter!

ABOUT THE LAKE PLACID CHRISTMAS PARADE. Continue reading “Lake Country Cruisers Shirt Shop is OPEN for Business!”

Calling All Cruisers for the Lake Placid Christmas Parade!

You’re ALL invited to be in the Lake Placid 2022 Annual Christmas Parade

Greeting Cruisers! The annual Lake Placid Christmas Parade is Saturday evening 7:00 pm, December 10, 2022. Yes, the same day that we will be having our Car & Bike Show at the Lake Placid Historical Society Train Depot.

It’s going to be a big day for Lake Placid. The U.S. Sugar Express is scheduled to pull into the depot at 12 noon, right in the middle of our Car & Bike Show, and while the Farmer’s Market will be taking place at the Journal Plaza.

For the Car & Bike Show, we will also have two very special Feature Cars for the Car & Bike Show, to be announced!

Last year we had a handful of cars and trucks at the Christmas Parade and we were invited back this year. The Lake Placid Christmas Parade is as Small Town Americana as it gets! If you have never been “in” a parade, it’s a hoot! Kids cheer, you’ll get lots of “Thumbs Up’s”, and probably be asked to “Light’m up!”. (no burnouts, please, but you already knew that) Continue reading “Calling All Cruisers for the Lake Placid Christmas Parade!”

R.I.P. Lake Country Cruiser, Larry Dudgeon…

Our Cruisers friend Larry Dudgeon has gone on ahead for his Eternal Cruise…

Greeting Cruisers! Note: Before I get into Larry Dudgeon’s passing, a quick mention about our posts. The “date” you see published just below the subtitle of each post does not correspond with any of our events. It is just the date I posted the article. – Scott

Last week, John Meyerhoff from Highlands County Corvettes e-mail me to let me know that on November 17, 2022, Larry Dudgeon passed on. Larry was 88 years old.

Larry was Lake Country Cruisers February 2022 Cruiser of the Month.

Last February I had a chance to talk at length with Larry. Here’s what I learned.

Larry resided in Spring Lake, close to the Sebring, Florida airport, but was from Blufton, Ohio. Larry spent six years in the United States Military and served fifteen months in Korea. While in the military, Larry worked in ordnance repair and was an electrical and fuel technician. Larry was first introduced to fuel injection and supercharging while working on military V-12 engines. Continue reading “R.I.P. Lake Country Cruiser, Larry Dudgeon…”

All Aboard! The U.S. Sugar Express Train No. 148 is Coming to Town!

Here’s the Story of the Restored U.S. Sugar Express Train!

Greetings Cruisers and Happy Thanksgiving!

Last Sunday we told you about our December 10 Car & Bike Show that will take place, only for December, at the Lake Placid Historical Society Depot, located at 12 Park, Avenue in downtown Lake Placid, Florida.

Our Special Guest Star for the show isn’t an automobile, but it does have wheels (14 of them) and can move people and big things from here to there. U.S. Sugar Express Train No. 148 is a local historical artifact. Instead of the 102-year-old “static” display piece, this slice of history still works and sells rides!

Here’s some interesting info about the U.S. Sugar Express Train No. 148 from the Wikipedia page for the locomotive…

No. 148 was the eighth member of ten 4-6-2 Light Pacific class 141 steam locomotives built by the American Locomotive Company (ALCO) of Richmond, Virginia in April 1920 for the Florida East Coast Railway (FEC).

It was assigned to haul passenger and freight trains on the FEC’s Overseas Railroad between Miami and Key West, Florida until 1935 when the Labor Day Hurricane destroyed many of the route’s long bridges and the FEC permanently closed it down due to the Great Depression.

During that time, the FEC began to retire most of their older 4-6-2 locomotives for scrap or selling them to other railroads in order to recoup their financial losses.[4][5] No. 148 remained in service with the FEC until June 1952, when it was sold to U.S. Sugar Corporation (USSC) in Clewiston, Florida, where it worked alongside its sister locomotives Nos. 98, 113, and 153 to haul sugarcane trains from the harvest field to USSC’s sugarcane mills.”

So, what that means is that our “Guest of Honor” is 102 years old! Continue reading “All Aboard! The U.S. Sugar Express Train No. 148 is Coming to Town!”

Got Car Clutter in Your Garage? We Can Help!

Lake Country Cruisers First-Ever Car Parts Swap Meet!

Greetings Cruisers and Happy Thanksgiving!

Our February 2023 Lake Country Cruisers Car & Bike Show will have an added feature… a Swap Meet! We all have car stuff stashed in our garages, so what better way of cleaning out the garage than a classic Swap Meet?

So, while we are having our regular Car & Bike Show, the Lake Placid American Legion has given permission for us to host a swap meet on the grassy area to the immediate south side of the Legion’s parking lot and in the grassy area behind the parking lot.

Space sizes for rent for the day will be a 10′ x 10” area for just $15 and a 10′ x 15′ area for $20 for the day.

To reserve a space at the Swap Meet, call Scott at… 863-699-6355, or e-mail him at… lightoak@comcast.net .

The time for the Car & Bike Show / Swap Meet will be from 9 am to 2 pm Continue reading “Got Car Clutter in Your Garage? We Can Help!”

Lake Country Cruisers Christmas Cruise-In

December 10, 2022, at the Lake Placid Historical Society & Depot Museum

Greetings Cruisers! This might seem a little early, but we want to get ahead of this special event!

Our next scheduled Lake Country Cruisers Car & Bike Show is on December 10, 2022. It just so happens that there’s A LOT going on that day in downtown Lake Placid!

To be part of the day’s festivities, the Lake Placid Historical Society & Depot Museum invited the Cruisers to have our December Car & Bike Show at the museum. Here’s what’s going on in downtown Lake Placid that day.

The fully restored U.S. “Santa” Sugar Express will be arriving at 12:00 Noon and departing for the south later in the day. If you have never seen a steam locomotive before, this will be a treat! These giant machines “breath” and sound like beasts “resting”.

Our December show will be in the Historical Society’s parking lot and side yard. And while you are at the show, the U.S. “Santa” Sugar Express will be coming into the Lake Placid Train Depot/Historical Society Museum!

The Toys For Tots folks will be there, so bring a toy if you like. Continue reading “Lake Country Cruisers Christmas Cruise-In”

A Beautiful Day For Our Vets! – SLIDE SHOW

Greetings Cruisers! Our November Lake Country Cruisers Car & Bike Show was a delight! A BIG THANKS to everyone that attended. We had 85 cars and bikes registered, which means we had around 120 in attendance and a few doggies, too!

Lake Country Cruisers bought 48 lunches for our great Vets! Thank you ALL for your service!

The Legion’s Mess Hall Kitchen had a great day too, serving up just short of 250 hamburgers, plus the hot dog count! You folks were HUNGRY! Between Lake Country Cruisers and Highlands County Corvettes, we bring in a lot of business for the Lake Placid American Legion.

And speaking of our wonderful Lake Placid America Legion, Post 25, a few weeks ago Commander Fred Pierce told me that at a recent Florida Commanders Meeting, many of the Post Commanders said, “We want to be like Post 25!” Many told Fred that they had sent recon teams to Post 25 to see why they are doing so good!

So, it is an honor and a pleasure to support and help Post 25! Continue reading “A Beautiful Day For Our Vets! – SLIDE SHOW”

Happy Veterans Day!!!

Greetings Cruisers and a salute to our great Vets!

Since today is the day our nation stops and says “Thanks!” to all that served and all those serving, we thought it would be fun to dish up a few videos about the history of America’s special day.

Tomorrow, November 12, 2022, will be our Veterans Day Lake Country Cruisers Car & Bike Show. Every Cruiser that is a Veteran that enters a car will get a ticket for a FREE LUNCH at the Legion’s Mess Hall kitchen. It’s our way of saying, “Thank you for your service!”

Also, our special Feature Vehicle for the show will be Bob Neely’s 1942 Ford-built Willys Combat Jeep with a replica .50 caliber anti-aircraft gun! Bob is part of the Convoy Advance Unit with the Military Vehicle Preservation Association, 2021 Yellowstone Trail Section Convoy.

We met Bob at last month’s show. Bob and Bill Hoppner from the American Legion Department of Disaster Preparedness were leading the Lake Placid leg of Hurricane Ian relief for Arcadia, Florida. Bob has recently relocated to Sebring. Lake Country Cruisers welcomes you Bob, and appreciates all that you and your team have done!

This is “America” folks, and we know that you know that. When disaster strikes, we set aside our differences and help our fellow Americans. Continue reading “Happy Veterans Day!!!”

Tiz the Season For Toys For Tots!

Bring a toy to this Saturday’s Veterans Day Lake Country Cruisers Car & Bike Show

Greetings Cruisers! I just learned that our Lake Placid American Legion, Post 25 will have a Toys For Tots donation box that will be located by the Legion’s Mess Hall kitchen counter where you order your lunch.

Toys For Tots is in its 75th year and is a U.S. Marine Corps charity. According to their website, to date Toys For Tots has distributed 627,000,000 toys since 1947! For more information about their program, CLICK HERE.

And for some background history about Toys For Tots, CLICK HERE.

For our Veterans Day Car & Bike Show this Saturday, every Veteran that enters a car or bike will get a ticket for a FREE LUNCH at the Legion’s Mess Hall kitchen. It’s our way of saluting our great Vets and thanking them for their service.

And to add to our Veterans Day theme, Bob Neely from the Military Vehicle Preservation Association will be with us and his fully-restored 1942 Ford-built Willys Combat Jeep will be our Feature Car of the Month!

Here’s an interesting article about how the Willys Jeep became an American World War II icon! CLICK HERE.

Showtime this Saturday is 10 am to 2 pm. Norm, the Kettle Man, and Divine Ice Cream Dave will be on hand dishing up sweet treats! Continue reading “Tiz the Season For Toys For Tots!”

Long Live the RAT FINK!

A Fun Documentary about Ed “Big Daddy” Roth and His RAT FINK

Greetings Cruisers! We’re all gear-heads and grew up in the ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s. It was IMPOSSIBLE back then to attend a car event without seeing Ed “Big Daddy” Ed Roth‘s classic ANTI-MICKEY MOUSE, the Rat Fink.

While Mickey was all about cute, wholesome, family-safe fun, the Rat Fink was ugly, stinky, had pointy bad teeth, was obnoxious green, had blood-shot bulging eyes, drove recklessly, burned rubber all the time, and had flies buzzing around him that he would sometimes eat!

“You RAT FINK!!!”

The video is funny, irreverent, and has charming animations. Actor John Goodman does the voice-over of Ed telling his story. A handful of famous actors add their voices to the story.

See if your ear can spot Ann Margret!

When Ed was a pioneer in the Hot rod culture, there were t-shirts, decals, model kits, posters, and more; with Roth’s vision of the Anti-Mickey Mouse and anti-hero characters and car-toons If you do searches on Amazon and eBay, you’ll find all kinds of Ed Roth and Rat Fink vintage products. Some of the old Rat Fink comic books are surprisingly expensive. Continue reading “Long Live the RAT FINK!”

11-12-22 “Veterans Day” Car & Bike Show Announcement

Lunch is on US!

Greetings, Cruisers! Our next Lake Country Cruisers Car & Bike Show will be on Saturday, November 12, from 10 am. to 2 pm. at the Lake Placid American Legion. Since Veterans Day is the day before, Friday, November 11, we decided the give a special “thanks” to our Great Cruiser Vets.

Every Veteran that registers a car will get a ticket for a FREE LUNCH inside the Legion’s “Mess Hall” dining room!

Also, our Kettle Corn vendor friend, and Dave the Divine Ice Cream man will also be at the show.

Since Veterans Day falls just before our show, we thought, why not help to make it, “Veterans Day Weekend”? Continue reading “11-12-22 “Veterans Day” Car & Bike Show Announcement”

Vintage V-12 Race Cars – Fire and Fury

This is why we LOVE machines!

Hey Cruisers! We all love “machines”. I just found this fascinating YouTube video featuring old race cars from the teens-to-the 1940s that were powered by V-12 aircraft engines! A few are newly-built, but they all have HUGE engines.

 

I found the oldest cars to be the most interesting because these beasts were built and raced not too long after Henry Ford’s Model T came out in 1908. In 1901 Henry won his first and only “race” in a car of his own construction at the Grosse Pointe race track, in Grosse Pointe, Michigan with a top speed of 72 mph and an average World Record breaking average speed of 65.79-mph!

It’s amazing how these cars, some of which are over 100 years old are still around and functioning!

They’re all about FIRE and FURY! This is serious, BIG FUN!

 

As I was watching this I thought, “No one is going to have this much fun with electric race cars!

Just a reminder, we are still on for our visit to George Haddad’s Fabulous Restorations Hot Rod shop, in Fort Lauderdale on Sunday, November 6, 2022.

It’s a fairly long ride, so we are suggesting that we carpool for the trip. If your machine is up for the trip, I know that George would love to see your car.

We will be meeting at Tabby’s parking lot on the south end of Lake Placid, on the right side of Rt. 27 as you are driving south, Sunday, November 6, 2022, at 8 am so that we can leave at 8:30. We’ll be making a rest stop in Moorhaven. Continue reading “Vintage V-12 Race Cars – Fire and Fury”

We’re Invited to Fabulous Restorations Hot Rod Shop!

ROAD TRIP!!! Come visit a genuine “palace” of a hot rod shop!

Dateline: 10-17-22 – Greetings Cruisers! My friend George Haddad, owner of Fabulous Restorations “Hot Rod Shop” has invited Lake Country Cruisers for the full tour of his amazing hot rod shop, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on Sunday, November 6, from 11 am to 1 pm.

George is a Detroit native and as a teenager growing up in Detroit, George was part of the Woodward Avenue Cruise’n and Stop-Light Grand Prix street scene. When George entered the job market he went to work for Chrysler while taking business courses in college.

By the early ’70s, George started taking long weekends and vacationing in Fort Lauderdale to escape the brutal Detroit winters. It didn’t take long for George to escape Michigan and take up residence in warm, sunny Fort Lauderdale.

Soon after arriving in Fort Lauderdale for good, George opened his first shop offering custom painting services for South Florida’s vibrant car culture. There was no going back to Detroit from there. His business kept growing and today George is in his largest shop that offers full-service hot rod, restoration, race car refreshes, engine-building, and painting services.

His latest shop is a hot rodder’s palace! No kidding! The foyer and entranceway are miniature memorabilia museums, filled with floor-to-ceiling posters, model cars, books, magazines, and just neat car stuff.

The shop is as neat as a pin and decorated with posters and art. Designated work areas include a paint booth, engine build room, storage areas for parts and supplies, and lots of lifts with all kinds of cars in various stages of work.

You could say that George has “gasoline in his veins!” Building hot street machines is George’s thing and he’s been at it for over forty-five years! Continue reading “We’re Invited to Fabulous Restorations Hot Rod Shop!”