Panhandle British Car Association: November 2012 Newsletter

PBCA masthead from British Marque




November 2012

Contributing Editor: Richard Lewis, email: bettyrichardlewis (at)
President: Bob Manske

If Not Now, When?

The beauty of a Florida fall is almost inexpressible. All too true is that we have hurricanes, windstorms, even hailstorms all too frequently, when the weather makes a deliberate attempt to kill you. We also have the heat and humidity during the hellish months of July and August, and mosquitoes and biting gnats that try to drill tiny holes in your flesh and carry off your life’s blood (we need a new name for that pair of wicked twins, those months. Lump them both together and call them “Horriblus”.) But then comes the last of September, October and even part of November, when the mornings are soft, the day is tender, and the nights are like a blanket of the softest cotton laid gently over one. Each day is to be treasured, and used. Used best out of doors, where Phoebus shines with proper restraint, when the weather has the good sense to settle down and mind its own business, and when a walk through the woods doesn’t remind one of a mugging.

What better time to drop the top on your idle British car and drive it through those winding back roads that haven’t yet been overtaken by Florida developers (yes, they still exist and in some abundance, especially here in LA, er, Lower Alabama.) You likely have not been using your un-air conditioned open top British car for the last few hot months because you don’t like to bake in the sun and stick to the seat. That’s all changed now. Now is the time to unlimber that car and make use of these gorgeous days and nights. Park that Hummer and break out the TR6. There is no better time. If not now, when? PBCA members have tried to do that, even when conditions were less than perfect. Let’s share some of the events that have caused our folks and friends to add to the carbon content of the air we breathe.


  • September 21-22--“Brits on the River” British Car Show in Natchez, Ms—Bill and Melissa Silhan and Bob and Risa Manske were the only PBCA members to make the trip to beautiful Natchez, but it was worth the trip. The Silhan’s AC Ace came away with “Best in Show,” and the Manske’s MGTF won “Sponsors Choice.” Congratulations, Silhans and Manskes.

  • September 29—Dog Days Rally. This PBCA- sponsored event, a fundraiser to benefit the Pensacola Humane Society, saw a great turnout of members and friends. Organized by Rich and Darla Willows, we saw 12 entries for this Rally through the lesser-known areas of Pensacola, with a treasure hunt thrown in. Winners Bob and Risa Manske, in their Jaguar XJ took a first, Bill and Melissa Silhan drove a lovely E-Type for a second, and Tom Matsoukas piloted his husky TR6 for a third. We also yielded up 295 pounds of dog food for the pups, and $60 in donations. Good job, Willows, and all our members and friends!

  • October 6—South Alabama British Car Club Ice Cream Social—Held in the fabulous “Garagmahal” of Rich and Cunningham, SABCC and PBCA member, this delightful event gave a chance for friends from SABCC, Marti Gras MG, and PBCA to congregate and enjoy heart-clogging helpings of ice cream with every possible topping one can think of. PBCA members Tom and Michelle Potka, in the “06 Lotus Exegie S, and Bob Hanson, in his “94 Jaguar XJS coupe made the drive to Loxley, Alabama for this pleasurable day, especially on one of the October days just made for driving your British car.

  • October 5-6—Eurofest 2012, Ridgeland, MS. This invitation-only event saw a crew of PBCA members both invited and attending. Bill and Melissa Silhan again championed with a “British Open” award for the fabled AC Ace. Mack Innis drove his “98 Aston Martin, Jean and Tom Schmidt took their ’58 Morgan, Curt and Midge Darby their ’53 MGTD, Mike and Nancy Darby in a very nice ’56 MGA, Rich and Darla Willows took the ’59 TR3, and Bob and Risa Manske the ’55 MGTF. This is a great show and an honor to be invited. Congratulations to all the participants.

  • October 13—U. S. Alabama Battleship Car Show—Again, a good representation of PBCA members showed up for this display-only show, including Tom Schmidt and Bob Henson in Tom’s ’69 E-Type 2+2 and John and Wendy Gosnell in a handsome TR6. Jon and Wendy are active in PBCA and Marti Gras MG as well, with Jon serving as president of MGMG. Not only did they have a good time with their cars and the cars of others, but they got a chance to view lots of antique tractors, like the Massy Fergusons, Ford, and John Deeres., they also saw a great fly-over by an antique Stearman biplane. Good work, all.

  • October 13—Henry Hensel’s Annual Halloween Party. Also on this date, Henry displayed his eclectic collection of almost everything, including his British cars, to a costumed bevy of friends, including PBCA members. Great fun and what a treat to view Henry’s oddities and perhaps take a peek into the inner-workings of his mind. That too must be a treat.


    By the time you read this, some of the following will have occurred. More later on these happenings. October 19-20—SABCC Car Show and Welcome Party, Fairhope, AL. this show is always a great treat, held on the attractive Faulkner State Community College grounds in the lovely city of Fairhope. Lots of awards and our good friends at SABCC always make everyone welcome. They also serve a great BBQ lunch, which alone is worth the drive. PBCA will caravan over and we hope for a large turn-out for this popular event, guaranteed to again be lots of fun.

  • October 21—Polo at the Point, Fairhope, AL. Fairhope is hopping this October weekend and the elegant Polo at the Point is a treat, both to view lots of great British cars, but to see a rare sporting event. PBCA sponsors a tent for comfortable lounging and chatter. Join this chance to greet our friends in MGMG and SABCC. You’ll like this one.

  • October 29—Marine Corps League Car Show, Five Flags Speedway, Pensacola. This too promises lots of excitement, with a gathering of British cars and a few laps around the Speedway course. This usually brings out a nice crowd.

  • November 19--PBCA Monthly Meeting—plans will be made for not only upcoming events but for the fabled “Brits on the Bay” show, sponsored by PBCA. We need all members in attendance to continue this fun but demanding task.

  • December1—Driving Event. Keith Sanders will no doubt put together another of his fine driving events. More details later.

  • December 8—PBCA Christmas Party, Days Inn, Pensacola Beach Resort. Friends and members will gather for holiday cheer and food, plus foolishness on the Beach. You’ll want to be there.

  • December 8—Lillian, AL Christmas Parade. No doubt, Tom and Jeannie Schmidt will organize again this delightful event, with a parade of British cars and candy and toys for lots of children and child-like adults. True fun.

    ‘Till next time, don’t drive like my granny.