Pre-war cars will be the focus of first Cutchogue auto show

KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | Parker Wickham at his home in June 2010.

Got an antique car stashed in your barn or garage? If so, the Cutchogue-New Suffolk Historical Council wants you to bring it out and show it off.

On Saturday, Oct. 15, the council will host the first-ever J. Parker Wickham Memorial Car Show, dedicated to the beloved local car and airplane buff who died earlier this year, on the Village Green.

Mr. Wickham donated a 1926 Model T Ford pickup to the Historical Council before his death in April, and the group spent this spring building a garage to house it and other historic cars. The garage adds an aspect of 20th century history to the green, where structures from the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries stand.

Though car shows abound on the East End, this one will be unique because all the cars on display will be pre-World War II, said council vice president Michael Malkush of Cutchogue, one of the event organizers.

“Nobody else is doing the real old ones,” he said. “When you talk about old cars now that could be a 1980s minivan, but we wanted to narrow it down. There are so many beautiful cars out there. So many people on the North Fork have old cars in their barns and garages.”

World War II marked a turning point in the automobile industry, as car production was halted from 1942 to 1945 while the assembly lines were drafted into the war effort.
Before the war, said Mr. Malkush, cars had big fenders, wider running boards and rumble seats — and earlier cars even had wooden wheels.

“They were classy then,” he said. “Later, they were more streamlined.”

The Oct. 15 event will run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. In addition to cars, it will feature old-fashioned refreshments and guides in period costumes offering tours of the green’s historic buildings. There will also be a parade of cars, during which each vehicle will be driven to the front and a brief description given on its historical significance.

Car owners can preregister their vehicles for $10, which includes admission for the driver and one passenger. Registration on the day of the show is $15. Admission for spectators is $5; children 12 and under are free.

This year, proceeds from the car show will be used to offset the $40,000 cost of constructing the garage. Mr. Malkush hopes the event will continue for many years to come.
For more information or to register, call Michael Malkush at 734-8044 or Joe Limongelli at 516-524-3077.

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