Although it appears that restrictions due to COVID-19 will continue to challenge our ability to put on some “traditional” programs for a time, things are improving on a daily basis, and our new officers and committee members have been busy planning events for you to enjoy your Mercedes-Benz in the New Abnormal. Be sure to visit our web site often for Club news and events: https://chicagoland.mbca.org/
As your new President, I look forward to hearing your input and suggestions for programs we can all enjoy safely. Also, because the National MBCA has largely eliminated financial rebates to the local sections this year due to budget constraints, we’ll be asking for your RSVPs and financial deposits well in advance of those scheduled events that will incur a cost to our Club.
Here are some of our tentative plans for the coming year:
Thursday, March 25, 2021 at 7:00 p.m.: A Virtual Tour of the MBCA Germany Trip.
Ever wonder what’s involved with the National MBCA Annual Trip to Germany? Join some of our experienced Section members for a virtual tour of the Stuttgart region and an MB Factory Tour, as they recap their experiences.
Saturday, April 24: Visit to the Knauz Car Collection in Lake Bluff
Join us for coffee and donuts as Past MBCA President Bill Knauz shares his stories of the history of the many classic cars in his private collection and explains the benefits of his Club membership over the past 56 years. Attendance will be limited to allow for social distancing, so sign up soon! Contact Bob Schuldt at [email protected] for further information as it becomes available.
Saturday, May 22: Our Annual Benz & Breakfast at Montrose Harbor
It’s official! The Chicago Park District has just announced the re-opening of the Chicago Lakefront. Our first outdoor event for the 2021 season at Montrose Harbor should allow us to safely social distance to enjoy cars and coffee at the Lakefront and shake off the winter doldrums. We're looking forward to seeing our members bring out both their treasured classics and new rides for everyone to enjoy for a fun-filled morning of camaraderie. Members can come and go as they please, and enjoy the Spring weather with new friends and old, and the chance to talk cars with like-minded individuals. Please RSVP to Ralph Sikorski at [email protected] by May 18, 2021, so we can bring enough donuts and pastries.
Saturday, July 10: Deutsche Marques Car Show at the Gilmore Museum
After a year's hiatus, we’re making tentative plans to join with the local Western Michigan Section to show our cars on Saturday, July 10, at the 9th Annual Deutsche Marques: a gathering of German cars, owners, and enthusiasts at the Gilmore Auto Museum in Hickory Corners, Michigan. New and old friends will converge for an All German Auto Event that will feature everything from daily drivers to weekend treasures on the museum grounds, with unlimited access to one of the nation's most fantastic auto museums.
Chicagoland Section will also be offering MBCA Silver Star Certification for Mercedes-Benz 25 years old or older that are largely original and have been unrestored since new, to provide special recognition to driver-quality cars that have withstood the ravages of time, climate and daily driving, but aren’t “concours queens.”
On Friday, July 9, the evening before the event, we are seeking interested members to join us for dinner in Kalamazoo if COVID-19 restrictions are lifted in Michigan. Webster’s Steakhouse is being considered. We are also in the process of setting up a discounted room block at the Radisson Hotel in Kalamazoo, which will offer indoor parking for our members’ cars. Contact Ed Matushek ([email protected]) or Chet Szerlag ([email protected]) for further facts as plans develop.
Saturday, July 17: Club Gathering at the Morton Arboretum in Lisle
Another outdoor event we are tentatively arranging will have Club members gather at the Morton Arboretum in Lisle. Contact Bob Schuldt at [email protected] for further information as our plans develop.
Sunday, August 22: The Geneva Concours d’Elegance.
Chicagoland Section Members are invited to join in our annual pilgrimage to the Geneva Concours d’Elegance, a fantastic classic, exotic and race automobile event that showcases the heritage, artistic and engineering significance of the automobile in the surroundings of historic Geneva, Illinois. This year's event will feature early autos built in the Chicago area, Ford Motor Company's Models A through T, honor the 60th Birthday of both the Chevy Corvair and the Austin Mini Cooper, and the 100th Birthday of both Duesenberg and Citroen Automobile. The Sports Car Club of America will also celebrate Seven Decades of Motorsports.
Our Members will populate the Car Club Display Area, help support the Geneva Concours' charity beneficiary, the LivingWell Cancer Resource Center, and we hope to again enjoy a fantastic brunch at Stockholm's Restaurant and Micro-Brewery. Check with Ralph Sikorski at [email protected] if you are interested in attending.
Labor Day Weekend: Drive the Initial Leg of Old Route 66
Initial preparations are being made for some interesting historical stops along Old Route 66 during the holiday weekend. If you would like to participate, contact Ralph Sikorski ([email protected]) or Chet Szerlag ([email protected]) for additional information.
October 9-10: Fall Driving Tour to Kentucky for a Visit to the Bourbon Trail Distilleries and Thoroughbred Heritage Horse Farms in Lexington.
Tentative plans are being drawn up for a weekend driving tour to Lexington, Kentucky to see the Thoroughbred Heritage Horse Farms and visit the Bourbon Trail Distilleries. Contact Ron Roush ([email protected]) for further details and advise of your interest in attending.
I also want to personally welcome 15 new Chicago Section members who have joined MBCA during the past month:
I hope to see you, and all our Chicagoland Section members at our upcoming events. We have other events in the planning stages and your comments and suggestions are always welcome – drop me a line anytime!