Charleston SC 4-19 to 23-2007
(with Model-A Club)
These 2 reports appeared on our May 2007 issue of The Running Board

CHARLESTON WITH THE “A-TEAM”
By Jerry Reichel

A- models are those cute little cars that always seem to lead parades, certainly not touring cars, “WRONG”.
At one of our Blue Ribbon Grill Saturday night socials Model A Restorers Club members Gary and Nila Benton causally mentioned they were setting up a spring tour to Gary’s hometown of Charleston, S.C. and they wondered if any of the V8 Club members would be interested in going along. The answer was “yes”, we all agreed , never turn down a tour.
Gary and Nila did all the planning, leave on April 19th, two days down, two days in Charleston, one day back. OK let’s go.
We left from Grayson on time, 6 A-models, 6 V8’s. 2 more V8’s joined along the way. I was surprised, those cars move right along, “oops” short stop for slight adjustment on the lead A-model, no problem, five minutes were back moving again. After several more slight adjustment stops we made a gas stop and another surprise, it’s like the V8’s are just another modern car, we didn’t even get a second look, we just waited until the show was over and were told to get in our cars to leave.
“WELL I NEVER”
Soon we were at our lunch stop, Sconyers BBQ in Augusta, Gary said he ate there many times while working in the area, Gary does alright, it was great.
The trip on to our overnight stop in Orangeburg had only one slight adjustment stop where we met 81 year old retired navy man John Henry Jones, he was a delight to talk to and was thrilled to see the cars, “all the cars”.
The trip on Friday into Charleston included a lunch stop with the local A-Model Club, more nice cars and friendly folks.
In Charleston we stayed at the Ashley River Inn, a very nice hotel with special parking area.
One thing soon became apparent, Gary and Nila knew Charleston, we saw it all, we were “uptown”, “downtown, in“old Town” and all around town. We toured the beach, the “Citadel”, the “plantations”, the “Battery”, the “H.L.Hunley, the aircraft carrier “Yorktown” and the bridge, we went over the bridge, around the bridge and ate dinner while passing under the bridge. We ate seafood three meals a day, great restaurants, great locations, just a great time.



CHARLESTON TOUR
By Fred Lindquist

Members of Georgia Region #24 joined with members of the Model A Club early on the morning of April 19 for a departure from Grayson at 7:30 A.M. We were under the direction of Gary and Nila Benton, who guided us to the Augusta area for a delicious barbeque lunch. Following lunch we headed to the overnight stop, but Gary encountered some minor problems along the way with his Model A. We arrived at a very nice Holiday Inn Express in Orangeburg, SC. We had a delicious meal in a leisurely atmosphere at a nearby Greek/Italian restaurant.
We left the next morning after a very restful night and headed to Charleston. We arrived at a seafood restaurant and were met by members of the local Model A Club there who joined us for a very good lunch. One of the local Model A’s was a 1931 Fordor beautifully restored and modified with homemade dual intake manifold, AC, hot water heater, and overdrive that allowed him to cruise at 65 mph. There was a restored 1931 Model A pickup that was originally one of 21 built specifically for General Electric and had special smooth sides for the bed. It was a very unique vehicle. The tour group then drove to the motel on the Ashley River. After checking in, Gary and Nila led us on a tour of Charleston that included driving through the campus of The Citadel. We all drove to a restaurant
that overlooked the Ashley River where we had fresh seafood. After a full day, it was not a problem for the tour group to return to the motel for the night, although one couple did sneak out to go dancing for a while.
Saturday morning, the tour group led by Gary & Nila, went to Middleton Plantation, originally settled in 1680, located just north of Charleston. We had lunch in the picnic area of the Plantation after visiting the home and grounds. One unique feature of the lunch was that peacocks walked among the picnic tables while we ate and we shared some of our food with them. Part of the group returned to the motel for the afternoon while and the rest went to the H.L. Hunley Museum. This is the Confederate submarine that sank the USS Housatonic in Charleston Bay in 1864 and later that day the H.L. Hunley sank. The submarine was located in 1995 and raised in 2000 after being in the ocean for 136 years. That evening, we all drove to a seafood restaurant on Shems Creek where we had another delicious meal in a beautiful setting watching the boats go by.
Sunday morning we all drove to Sullivan’s Island and Isle of Palms where we saw many beautiful beach homes. We walked on the beach and through the shops before leaving for lunch on the way back to Charleston. For some reason that is unexplainable, the Bentons and the Freemans did not get their lunch until the rest of the group had finished and was ready to leave. Most of the group returned to the motel and relaxed before dinner while a smaller group went to Patriots Point and toured the aircraft carrier Yorktown. That evening we drove to Patriots Point for a dinner cruise. We boarded at 7:30 P.M. while it was still light and we could view the porpoises swimming in front and along side the boat as we toured the bay. The meal was delicious and we enjoyed the dancing and entertainment. The boat is a great way to view Charleston, especially at night with all the lights sparkling.
Monday morning we left at 7:30 A.M. for an uneventful return to Atlanta, except for Gary whose Model A blew a head gasket. Fortunately, one of the other Model A owners had a spare and they were on their way in an hour. This was a great tour and big thank you goes to Gary and Nila Benton for all their efforts organizing this weekend activity.

Charleston Tour Participants:
Ellis & Lyda-Rae Garner, A Fordor / Gary & Nila Benton, A Roadster /
Benny & Pam Bohanan, A Tudor / Ron & BeBe DeRenzis, A Roadster /
Jim & Rose Donaldson, A Tudor / Joe & Rita Kimball, A Fordor /
Don & Betty Morris, 40 Merc. / Neal & Emily Freeman, 51 Ford /
Doug & Elizabeth Hollandsworth, 49 Ford / Lamar Hart & Nancy Bireley, 52 Ford/ Bob & Mary Ann Padovano, 51 Ford / Jerry & Cheryl Reichel, 51 Ford /
Fred & Katie Lindquist, 39 Ford.
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