More than 200 attended the National Council of Corvette Clubs Michigan Region awards banquet sponsored by the Flint Corvette Club at Matick Chevrolet.
In 1953, the first Corvettes were manufactured in Flint, Mich., a fact not lost on the Flint Corvette Club.
“Our club motto is ‘Birthplace of the Corvette,’” says Jim Harris, club president.
The club itself originally came together back in 1969.
Harris has been a member since 1973, when his ride was a 1971 red Corvette coupe. Now 74, he owns a 2003 Corvette coupe — and the car color is still red.
“My taste hasn’t changed a lot over the years. Black is beautiful, too, if you have someone else doing the polishing,” he jokes.
The Flint club’s 50 members get together monthly to attend events or just “dine and drive.”
“We do what the members want to do,” Harris says.
This Aug. 27, hundreds of Corvette lovers — including members of the Flint club — will assemble in northern Michigan's Mackinaw City for the annual Corvette Crossroads Auto Show.
Harris, a retired electrician, and Flint club members helped organizers pull the first show together 27 years ago, he says, because people have a way of finding him because of his long association with Corvettes.
“I’ve gone every year except the one year I had to work,” he says. “It’s a nice place to go with a craft show, shops, and sights to see.”
The club members gather for an annual corn roast, ball games, and bell ringing for the Salvation Army or Super Bowl parties.
A young Corvette lover checks out the Corvette racer driven by Danny Kellermeyer on display at a recent club meeting. Danny is sponsored by Matick Chevy.
The Flint club is also part of the National Council of Corvette Clubs (NCCC) and is sponsored by George Matick Chevrolet in Redford Township, Mich., a leading Corvette dealer and GM’s Chevy Dealer of the Year for 2014 and 2015.
When a person joins the Flint club, they are also required to join the NCCC.
Harris, who lives in nearby Lennon, Mich., points out one of the national club activities involve competitive driving, including autocross.
“This year we’ll do our program Aug. 14 at Michigan International Speedway,” Harris says.
Participants line up for autocross, racing against the clock, not each other, on a course defined by plastic cones.
After the Flint club lost its dealership sponsor, one of the members who connected with Matick Chevy suggested calling the big Redford dealership, says Harris.
“It’s worked out great,” Harris says.
Matick Chevy and the Flint club hosted the April 3 regional awards banquet for the NCCC Michigan region. Read that story here.
More than 200 attended from 16 Michigan clubs. That was a record turnout, officials reported.
Funds raised were donated to Veterans Outreach of Southeast Michigan.
“It was a good turnout and we recognized people who participate in rallies and shows,” he says.
Club member Barbara Harris gets ready to lead the parade at the 2015 Mackinaw City Corvette Show, which the club has helped coordinate.
As for Corvettes, Harris has a trunkful of reasons for being a fan.
“They’re fun to drive and I appreciate the way the car handles and the technology that has taken place with the Corvette since the 1960s.”
Harris says he feels youthful behind the wheel.
“You see lot of us old geezers in newer cars,” he says.
The camaraderie connected with Corvette clubs might even affect an owner’s personal life.
Harris met his wife, Barbara, at a national Corvette gathering in the mid-1980s.
“A mutual friend of ours in ‘Corvetteing’ set things up for us to meet,” Harris explains.
Barbara was a Corvette owner and a member of a Toledo area club.
The couple met at a convention in Indiana, and Harris says, “The rest is history.”
The Flint club welcomes new members. “We are open and friendly,” he explains. “And we’re always looking for new people.”