Union Leader Show N' Shine draws chrome and crowds to Manchester
Lena Picarillo, of Salem, looks over one of the cars. (Bruce Preston/Union Leader)
Karen Nicolls, of Pelham, relaxes and beats the heat inside her 1955 Chevy BelAir at the Union Leader Show N Shine Saturday. (Bruce Preston/Union Leader)
MANCHESTER — Amidst a sea of shining paint and chrome at Saturday's Union Leader Show N' Shine Car & Motorcycle Show sat two huge trucks whose owners had no delusions about capturing any prizes.
“I didn't even wash it,” Gretchen Cotton of Hooksett said while standing next to her 1987 GMC K5, which has a custom suspension and monster tires.
Her husband, Mike, who brought his 2002 Chevy S10 with a similar custom suspension and tires to the Union Leader campus at 100 William Loeb Drive, said they come to car shows because, like those who faithfully restore vintage cars, they love all things with engines.
“You've got to have an appreciation for anything with motors and wheels,” he said.
The Cottons' trucks aside, the car show featured a lineup of more than 50 cars that included cars you might see passing you on the highway — one person entered a 1992 Pontiac Grand Prix — to the kind rarely used to commute to work or make a grocery run..
A few examples: a black 1961 Corvette parked next to red 1965 and 1967 Corvettes, a 1966 Chevrolet Nova equipped with a hydraulic suspension that attracted an early crowd Saturday morning, a 1941 Cadillac that looked like it was driven off the set of The Godfather movie, a hot pink 1935 Ford Coupe Street Rod, a 1965 Ford Cobra and a 1932 Ford Roadster that sported an 850-horsepower engine.
“It's had its fair share” of awards, the Roadster's owner, Lindsey Smith of Londonderry, said before ticking off about 10 examples of the car's appearances in car shows, magazines and television shows. “When I come to local shows, though, I just like to bring it for fun and for people to see it.”
The father-and-son team of John Sherman Sr. and John Sherman Jr., who have homes in Nantucket, Mass., and in Franklin, drove the 1965 Cobra, which they said was an official replica chassis and not built from a kit, to the car show and didn't bring it in the back of a trailer.
“If you're going to have the car, you might as well drive it,” Sherman Jr. said.
“I think that's most of the excitement,” Sherman Sr. said.
The annual Union Leader Show N' Shine Car & Motorcycle Show raises money for the Union Leader Charitable Fund and the Union Leader Santa Fund for the Salvation Army.
Admission to enter a vehicle was $20, and spectators were asked to make a donation to the Santa Fund.
The vendors at the show were the Union Leader, the Salvation Army, Superior Interiors, Patches Quilt Loft and Embroidery, Confections from the Heart, the New Hampshire Motor Speedway, D.J. Dave Entertainment, Merrill Lynch and the Patriot Guard.
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The vehicles voted the best included:
1930s: 1932 Roadster owned by Lindsey Smith;
1940s: 1941 Caddy owned by Eric Ames;
1950s: 1955 Chevy Belair owned by Don Nicols;
1960s: 1965 Ford Mustang owned by Paul Brealt;
1970s: 1974 Chrysler Cordoba owned by Gilbert Estes;
1980s: 1987 Buick Regal owned by Jim Santes;
1990s: 1999 Pontiac Trans Am owned by Tom Boyce;
2000s: 2004 Ford Mustang owned by Dick Pellerin;
2010s: 2011 Ford Mustang owned by Pat Mulin;
Motorcycles: 1976 Honda Chopper owned by Bob Barbin.
Best of Show: 1957 Ford T-Bird owned by Bob Hayes.
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