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Linton Freedom Festival sponsored Classic Cruisers celebrate 20 yearsPosted Monday, June 25, 2012, at 3:27 PM
(By Nick Schneider) Chuck Fields, of Vincennes, rubs a shine on to his 1955 Chevrolet 210 Custom. The car was named the Chamber of Commerce Award winner.
Beach Boys tunes from the late 1960's era were churning good vibrations through the hot and humid air at Saturday's 20th Annual Linton Freedom Festival Car Cruise-In.
Arthur was among the 158 exhibitors at this year's show, sponsored by the Linton Freedom Festival Committee, the Linton-Stockton Chamber of Commerce, and the Classic Cruisers Car Club.
Arthur spoke proudly of his highly polished, red-colored 1931 Ford Model T pickup, which actually was a 16-year restoration project that started in 1991 and got show ready by 2006.
"I took some time out to clear some property and build a house," he explained about the longevity of the project.
Arthur said the truck was used by its former owner to haul coal and to preserve some of that history, during the restoration he included as the back bumper an old coal mine drill bit that his wife, Sandy, had earlier purchased at an auction.
The frame on this oldie, but beauty was crafted by Lee Osborne, a 2009 National Sprint Car Hall of Fame inductee and hot rod designer. Osborne used to have a shop in Indy before moving to New York. He's the same guy who's provided frames to racing great A.J. Foyt. He also built the first sprint car for NASCAR star Jeff Gordon.
Osborne, in fact, built all of Gordon's sprint car and open wheel frames during his early years.
"When I met him, he was building street rods for A.J. Foyt and Jeff Gordon. He built '34 Ford Coupe's for both of them," Arthur said.
Arthur said his award-winning exhibit car is never driven on the roadway, especially on the chip and seal county road where he lives in Knox County. He took home trophies in all 11 shows that he entered in 2011.
While he admitted this is an expensive hobby, he was quick to point out there is plenty to enjoy.
"What I enjoy about it is just the idea that I can bring it (the truck) out here and talk to people," Arthur said. "I enjoyed putting it together. It was a lot of work and a lot of time. It's got some unique features."
When asked what he had in his old truck, his eye brows raised, he smiled and said, "Probably between $40,000 and $50,000, but don't tell my wife. She'd kill me."
Another of the exhibitors, Chuck Fields from Vincennes, called it a passion - the work he did on his classic 1955 Chevy 210 Custom beauty.
Fields does about a dozen car shows a year and said this was his second visit to the Linton show.
"It won't be my last. It's a nice show here. We've got shade here, you know. There's a good variety (of vehicles), good people," he explained.
Fields said it took him five years to put the finishing touches on his bright red-colored classic.
"It's just for show," he quickly replied when asked if the car was for sale.
"We've got a couple of drag cars, but this is the only one that I show," Fields said.
Fields agreed with Arthur that the car show gig is an expensive hobby and not one for the financially faint of heart.
"It probably would take $45,000 to buy it, if I was to sell it. It cost $1,800 brand new," he added with a big laugh. "It's got power windows, power door locks, power seats and air-conditioning and those things didn't come out in it in 1955, you know."
On this day, Field's didn't go home empty handed. He won the Chamber of Commerce Award for his effort - one of the major awards of the day.
Proceeds from the 20th annual event will go to Riley Children's Hospital, and other local charitable activities, according Gary Howell, of rural Bloomfield, who serves as treasurer for the Classic Cruiser Car Club.
He explained that "Top 50" awards given out to the vehicles with the most points in appearance and condition.
Among the big awards:
* The Memorial Award went to "Ronnie Cook from Reelsville, with a nice 1933 Ford Phaeton Convertible.
* The Best of Show Trophy went to Chat Harden, of Bloomington, for his 1954 Plymouth Wagon.
"A major thank you to the Linton Freedom Festival Committee, Linton Chamber of Commerce, and the Linton Police Department for helping us with the event," Howell added.
Nick is assistant editor for the Greene County Daily World. He can be reached by telephone at 847-4487 or 1-800-947-4487 or by e-mail at email@example.com .
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