BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
FORT MADISON – More than 70 cars were part of the 2017 Pen City Cruiser’s Car Show in Fort Madison, but this year event coordinators are pushing for 100.
With the Pen City show one of the first of the year in the southeast Iowa, coordinator Jerry Krogmeier said it was tough getting started, but the event has been shown steady growth over five years.
“We’re the first show of the year. We’ve been gaining about 20 cars per year, but the down side of being the first of the year is you never know what kind of weather you’re going to get,” Krogmeier said.
The event will be held Saturday, May 5th at the Old TG&Y parking lot at 5036 Avenue O in Fort Madison. Registration will take place from 9 a.m. to noon, with voting from noon to 2 p.m. and award presentations beginning at 3 p.m.
Krogmeier said sponsorship has been good this year and 24 awards will be presented, including the Rick and Chandler Berry Memorial Award sponsored by Chris Greenwald. New this year is an award for best motorcycle and best license plate.
“Rick Berry died of cancer at a very young age. Two years after he died, his son was killed in an automobile accident. They were close to Mr. Greenwald and he’s sponsored that award for the past three years,” Krogmeier said.
The event also triggers some type of donation to a local non-profit group. Krogmeier said in years past, they’ve donated clothing to local elementary schools and may look at other groups this year. The group has also donated to the local fire departments, local EMTs and PAW Animal Shelter, and Veterans For Flags.
“Last year we had to purchase a trailer for the club but this year we won’t have that expense so we hope to be able to make a donation locally.”
One of the other awards being presented is the Young Guns Under 21 award that is presented to a shower under the age of 21.
“We’re actually trying to get the younger generation to come in. They’re into their phones and Facebook and all that and don’t have a lot of interest in the auto industry any more,” he said. “That’s been one of my big pushes. It doesn’t have to a be classic, just whatever your project is or even your daily drive. Money isn’t the issue here, we just would like to see some of the younger generation get involved.”
There will be some auto-related games like a push-rod drop and fan belt toss with some t-shirt and hat giveaways. Goodie bags and dash plaques will go to the first 75 entries.
Food will also be available at the Shell gas station next to the property and the Fort Colony Diner.
Registration is $12 if done before by April 30. Day-of-event registration is $15.