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Spring 2003

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Philadelphia and why!

By David A. Berg
Vice President-Regions

Have you ever wondered why some Regions seem to have an easier time growing than others? Sure, you have noticed them. They always seem to get new members, hold more events, and even have a website! How do they do it? How do they get the members involved and keep them involved? Will the members really show up if there isn’t free food or door prizes? How? Well one of the secrets to Region success is Philadelphia. More specifically the AACA Annual Meeting held each February in the “City of Brotherly Love.” Thinking back, recalling my years as a member of various Regions, I can honestly say, during the periods of those Region’s strength and prosperity there was one constant. They sent one or two or more representatives to the Annual Meeting in Philadelphia. Truthfully, in the beginning I didn’t understand why they did that. I thought maybe it was just a perk for being an officer. How little I knew!

As I attended the Annual Meeting each year, mainly to attend one of the several judging schools, I began to see the big picture. I saw that so many seminars were offered on a myriad of topics. Many of the seminar moderators were nationally known within the Antique Automobile hobby. I began to see the value of a Region being represented in Philadelphia. Years later I would learn there is a special dinner for the Region presidents. A time to meet other Region presidents, National officers, and even the National president! As the years went by, Philadelphia became a special mark on my calendar. I would never want to miss it. Still though I didn’t realize even close to the full potential of this wonderful event.

It really wasn’t until this years visit that I got a look at it from a different perspective. Knowing that I would be entering the position of Vice President of Regions, I thought it wise to attend the two seminars moderated by the members of the Regions Committee. Well, I have to tell you, I was amazed! I learned so much about Region Officer training, ways to get new members, methods for hosting events and making them easier to do. Overwhelmed is a good way to describe it. There is even a manual on Region Officer Training given out free! There is a multi hour video that can be purchased affordably or borrowed at no charge from Headquarters that every Region Officer should see. It goes into great depth on the “How To” of so many aspects of Region life. I saw slides, heard a variety of speakers and learned more than I can possibly describe here. All free, included in the minimal registration fee.

In addition, had time permitted for me I would have loved to visit some other seminars as well. There were a lot of them. So Region officers and members, if your Region wants to grow, wants to prosper, wants to succeed, it needs power. Power comes from knowledge. Knowledge comes from the AACA Annual Meeting in Philadelphia. Make sure your Region is represented. Next year’s Annual meeting will be held February 13-14, 2004 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Wishing you a wonderful year on the Road.

Dave Berg
VP Regions

 

So go collect something!

by Terry Bond
Vice President - AACA Museum, Inc.

I fall into a special category of auto enthusiast. I collect automotive “things.” Actually, I think I collect collections. Like many of you, my interest in things on wheels knows few boundaries, except I’ve developed a leaning towards the earlier years of the automobile. I guess it’s a fascination with history. Blame Uncle Sam. You see, the Navy moved me around a lot, and that made it difficult to gather automobiles. So, pieces of them, or things related to them filled the void (and cabinets and shelves throughout the home). Unusual spark plugs, postcards, advertising signs, literature, auto accessories and parts, hood ornaments, lamps, horns, strange tools, and many more things to hang on the wall, stack on the shelves, lean up in the corner and illuminate in display cabinets now adorn the garage, the den and even my office.

If I had a dollar for every time a fellow club member looked on me with disdain and asked “what do you need that for?” I could probably buy a few more of whatever it was we were discussing at the time. You see, not everybody has yet discovered the joys of collecting. I’ve heard all the excuses for not collecting, and I certainly won’t argue that some of them do present occasional barriers. But, I can tell you that collecting has been the source of endless satisfaction. Perhaps you need only to rethink what you collect in order to make it a little more affordable, easier, or acceptable. In other words, why worry because you can’t collect the whole train? The whistle is just as much fun!

As my spark plug collection grew, and as the postcard album(s) began to fill up, and as empty wall space became precious, I also realized there was tremendous theraputic value in all of this. What a wonderful chance to get out into the countryside (and into old garages, barns and junk yards). There were tremendous opportunities for fellowship (with similarly afflicted individuals). And, there was a renewed appreciation for history and that sure sounded like adequate justification to pursue continued acquisition. Besides that, there was the tremendous investment potential – despite that fact that I am continually reminded that if I never sell anything, it certainly can’t be worth anything at all!

So, years later the collections are continually evolving. And, I’ve come to realize what it is specifically about collecting that has brought such joy to my life and hobby, and I hope to others as well. From that have come a few key points that I’ve called “Terry’s rules of collecting.” I hope you enjoy them!

  1. Never buy anything you don’t really like. Never take home anything you wouldn’t mind keeping forever.

  2. It’s a hobby, not a business. Don’t collect to sell, you can always sell to help collect, but don’t ever approach it strictly from a business viewpoint. It detracts from the enjoyment – besides, anyone can have money, you have to be lucky to have stuff!

  3. The difference between true collectors and hoarders is showcases. Put your stuff on display and enjoy it. No, better yet, share it with others!

  4. Educate yourself. Know what you are collecting. Know what it is and what it means. Learn the feel of the genuine article. Know its history. Only then can you really appreciate what you have.

  5. Quality is more important than quantity. See rule six below for a better explanation.

  6. Three of anything is a collection. Be satisfied with what you have. You’ll never have it all. Don’t worry about having the most, the largest, or even the best. Someone will always have more money to spend and better luck. Someone will always be one step ahead of you at the next flea market. Best idea is to find them and make them a friend and enjoy collecting together.

  7. Share. You learned that in kindergarden right? If you secret your stuff away in closets or bank vaults, how can you enjoy? Over the years and miles, it’s the friendships that are most important to me, and each trip to Hershey is as much a social occasion as it is a treasure hunt.

In the grand scheme of things, there are few things that are as enjoyable as sharing something in common among good friends. Whether its fishing stories, or treasure hunting in an old country garage, few things in life provide as meaningful a diversion from the daily grind. Those “souvenirs” then can become pleasant reminders – the photographs in our mind of good times.

Now get out there and collect something! And let me know if you come across any good automobile sheet music – that’s my latest collection!

Terry

 

 

oh no, my wallet's missing

by Earl D. Beauchamp, Jr.
Executive Vice President, AACA

We all travel around. Some of us travel all over looking for old cars, or taking our antique automobiles to car shows. Others of us go to malls in big cities, or take a vacation to Hawaii or drive to grandma’s house in McKees Rocks, Pennsylvania. It’s so true that everywhere you go, there could be the accident of leaving your credit card at a gas station, or worse yet a pickpocket or purse-snatcher could make you the prey at the mall or the ballpark or just about anywhere else. What to do?

Recently I read an article in a Region newsletter that I found very valuable to me. I have every reason to believe almost every one of the 63000 AACA members could find it just as valuable to them. It is the answer to that question above. What do you do if it happens to you?

There are three major national credit-reporting companies. The first thing to do is immediately place a FRAUD ALERT on your name and Social Security Number. This is a quick way to report the theft of your credit cards. The phone numbers are:

Equifax 1-800-525-6285
Experian (formerly TRW) 1-800-301-7195
Trans Union 1-800-680-7289

The FRAUD ALERT means that any company checking your credit knows your information was stolen and they have to contact you by phone to authorize any new credit.

The next thing to do is call the Social Security Administration, who also has a fraud line at 1-800-269-0271.

Be sure you keep a list of your credit cards and credit card numbers somewhere at home. Once you’ve put out the fraud alert you can begin to individually contact the companies who have issued you credit cards.

Follow that with a visit or phone call to each of your banks, especially if you lost checks or checking account numbers. In case some form of robbery caused your loss, don’t forget to call the telephone company if you lost your cell phone, or had cards in your wallet with your phone number on them. These days’ thieves can sell your information to identity theft crooks and often choose to do that rather then to try and use your cards themselves.

I hope this information is something you never have to use; but it pays to be prepared just in case. Write those credit card company numbers down and put them somewhere that you can get your hands on them in emergency.

Let me extend my thanks to the first person that put this information into their local AACA Region newsletter. I did exactly what I recommend here. I put the information away where I could find it, but I didn’t write down your name or that of your Region.

National awards

By Dave Zimmerman
Vice President, National Awards

I have been asked many times “How are cars chosen for National Awards”? The National Awards Team consists of 21 members who are highly skilled in different areas of expertise. At each National Meet, Tour and the Grand National, the team looks at all cars with the exception of the “Driver Participation Class and HPOF Class”. The HPOF Class cars are looked at by the HPOF committee.

Each team member is assigned an area to view, and to make nominations on the vehicles they feel are the best of the best. These recommendations are collected by the Vice President of National Awards and entered into a database for future reference. These recommendations are done in a very short time frame and this is where the experience comes in handy.

After the Eastern Division National Fall Meet, Hershey, Pennsylvania, the owners of the nominated cars are asked to submit slides of their vehicle and an information form to the VP of National Awards. In early December the entire team meets in Hershey and spends a long day viewing these slides and referring to the judging sheets for these vehicles. A vote is taken on each vehicle and the winners are selected. The winners are then notified by the Vice President of National Awards and invited to the Annual Meeting in Philadelphia for the award presentation.

These folks are highly dedicated AACA members who truly love this hobby!

attention region newsletter editors

Wondering where to send your Newsletter copies this year? Listed below is the 2003 Publications Committee.

  1. Sherman Carey
    AACA VP Publications
    110 Terrace Place
    Lincolnton, NC. 28092

  2. Dave Wunsch
    9346 N. Weather Hill Dr.
    Tuscon, AZ. 85743

  3. Earl Beauchamp, Jr.
    225 Eagle Ave.
    Sebring, FL. 33872

  4. Dave Berg
    120 David Lane
    Harmony, PA. 16037

  5. Peter Brown
    2 Ironwood Lane
    Rye, NY. 10580

  6. Jeanne Smith
    501 Governor Rd.
    P.O. Box 417
    Hershey, PA. 17033

Also a courtesy copy is sent to the National President.

  1. Joseph S. Vicini
    3 Robins Nest Drive
    Perrineville, NJ. 08535