Saturday, August 18, 2012

The only thing better than attending the KCCA Vettes on the Plains Show is doing it in a new Grand Sport

Here’s something that I know you know, but I’m going to restate it anyway.  I love Corvettes.  The new ones are crazy fast, and easy to drive that way.  The old ones are packed full of character and style, and were all great performers in their day.  I love sitting down on the floor.  I love looking out over the hood.  I just can’t think of anything I don’t like about them.

OK, I can think of one thing.  I don’t have one.  That fact is especially painful during the Kansas City Corvette Association’s annual Corvette show.  All those beautiful Corvettes, and none for Craig.  But this year, I was able to do something about that.  General Motors was generous enough to loan me a fabulous 2013 Grand Sport 60th Anniversary coupe to take to the show.  And that is an opportunity I will never forget.

Before I get to the show itself, I want to give you a few details about my ride for the weekend.  First of all, if you’ve never driven a late model Corvette, you owe it to yourself to do so.  Because you see them around pretty often, it’s easy to dismiss them as normal cars, or less than what they actually are.  This ArcticWhite GS that I was driving had the “base” 6.2-liter powerplant, mated to the optional dual-mode performance exhaust, which was good for 436-hp.  And let me just say, it was an absolute screamer.

This car sounds good; it looks good; you can take corners way too fast.  Your co-workers, neighbors, and even strangers come up and ask you about it.  And if you ever get a chance to take your eight-year-old son for a ride in one, you’ll be an absolute hero.

About 200 other people had firsthand knowledge on the joys of Corvette ownership at the Vettes on the Plains Show at the Great Mall of the Great Plains.  This is the same show that was formerly held around Independence Square, but space limitations forced them to move.  Of course, the new location made the show within walking distance from Toys ‘R Us, Burger King, and the As Seen on TV store, so I’d say progress has been made.

Every year I start my review of this show by telling you how the black ’67 with the 427 and red interior was my favorite.  That car was there, and it is still my favorite, but I’m not going to say it this time.  Instead I want to tell you about some other standouts, like this green ’66 convertible with really unusual green interior and a nice 327 under the hood.  This car had that original look that I like so much, and even though it wasn’t pristine in the purest sense of the word, it was the kind of car you could drive and enjoy.

One guy pulled up in a blue ’87 convertible that immediately looked familiar to me.  Turns out it was the same car that I owned some 12 years ago.  It really wasn’t much worse for wear after all this time, and still had the luggage rack and black canvas top that I added.  The biggest difference is that he changed the wheels out to some newer chrome five-spokes, but it wasn’t enough to throw me off the trail.  I think it’s kind of fun to see cars that you used to own, and because this was a Corvette, it had a little extra meaning.

There wasn’t a huge number of straight-axle Vettes there, but there were a few nice ones.  The silver/white over red ’61 that we parked near at the Art of the Car Concours was there, and it was just as nice as ever.  A black/silver over red ’57 Fulie was so perfect I would have been afraid to let people get near it.  And there was a ’54 sitting there that was undoubtedly better than it was when it left the factory.  Those really were Motorama Dream Cars that made it to the street, and I think they’re great.

I could probably write some reason why I like every one of these cars, but that would make for an awfully long (longer?) story.  And I’m sure you’re capable of deciding which ones are your favorites without my opinion.  I say that to say this: I lied.  That red and black ’67 really makes me weak in the knees.  I can’t help it; I have to post a picture.  I’m sorry for the redundancy, but just look at that thing.  It’s just so … mmm.

For your viewing pleasure, I am posting 512 pictures from the Kansas City Corvette Association’s Vettes on the Plains Show.  But don’t look for my old beater truck to signify the end of the slideshow.  That awesome new Grand Sport will finish things off with an exclamation point.


  1. Man, was it good to Craig on Saturday or what?!? Love that blue-ish interior colour.
    Thanx for the photos as always, and I gotta agree with you on that 67 - an absolute work of art. In fact, I have one of those Franklin Mint Precision Models of a car exactly like it on one of my bookshelves.
    Hope Dad felt like going, even if just for a bit. I know he's likin' those Corvettes too.

  2. Yeah, that blue leather was really nice. I think it was part of the 60th Anniversary theme on that car. Anyway, it was different, which is always a good thing.

    Dad isn't quite up to going to something like this yet, but I obviously took a lot of pictures for him! Thanks!

  3. Craig - Again you have written a conderful story and such great pictures. Thank you so much! It was met you Saturday. Kay Carlile

  4. Thanks for having me! I had a great time there.

  5. Craig pics were great as always nothing wrong with your taste or
    eye for color and design. Black/Red 67 big block roadster is now
    for sale since I have two in college. Sorry for this shamless ad
    but I would like to sell to someone who would love it as I do.
    thanks Bruce 816-529-8040