Police museum prepares for second annual car showWritten by Sanya Ali | | firstname.lastname@example.org
A troupe of cars and antique emergency vehicles will soon make a pit stop at the Toledo Police Museum.
The “Cops and Rodders Car Show,” which the museum inaugurated last year, rides into town from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. June 22 It will take place at Ottawa-Jermain Park next to the museum, which is located at 2201 Kenwood Blvd.
Museum Director Shay Carlson said the venue is perfect for this show.
“The Ottawa-Jermain Park Board has been very generous to us,” Carlson said. “We can park the cars anywhere we need to. It’s a beautiful venue, it’s shady and it has the shelter house with tables.”
Carlson said the purpose of the show initially was to garner publicity for the museum.
“We have several retired and current active duty police officers who are car fans,” Carlson said. “It seemed like a nice way to have an event at the museum that would raise awareness of the museum and that would draw our police family to the museum for an event.”
Jeff Hauden, a local car enthusiast, said he was inspired to suggest the show to museum staff after helping in a restoration last year. Hauden noticed the spacious park next door and thought immediately of hosting a car show.
Hauden has been a car aficionado since his youth.
“It started as a teenager,” Hauden said. “I built car models growing up, went to the racetracks and the dragways. I’ve always been interested in cars.”
Hauden will display his 1967 Chevelle at this year’s show.
Accompanying the vehicle display will be music by DJ Cruisin’ Zeake, coffee and doughuts, door prizes donated by local businesses and a 50/50 raffle. Because of the turnout at last year’s event, Carlson said she is optimistic they will have a good crowd this year.
“We hope that we get a lot of repeat participants and, if we were to get 300-350 cars, we would feel like we had established ourselves as an event that people want to participate in as well as attend,” Carlson said.
The event led to a partnership with the Cleveland Police Museum. The Cleveland museum’s show, which takes place June 21, will feature only antique police vehicles. Some of those vehicles will also be shown in Toledo the following day.
“The Cleveland police vehicles are an added attraction,” Carlson said. “We don’t have any limits or criteria on what kind of vehicle can participate in the car show. If you want to show your car, you can show your car.”
Carlson said the community of antique car collectors has been instrumental in the event’s success.
“We expected somewhere between 30-50 cars, [but] we ended up with over 200 cars and we were told that we could expect even more this year,” Carlson said. “The car show community is pretty tightly knit and they really like our venue in the park.”
Museum President Beth Thieman said last year’s event left her pleasantly surprised.
“We were just praying for 100 cars to show up for our first show,” Thieman said. “As the cars kept rolling in and the count went over 200, I looked around at the scene that had unfolded. The weather was perfect, cool classic cars everywhere, people smiling and strolling around under the trees, visiting with each other — it was just a great day.”
Carlson said she fondly remembers the feeling of family fun that last year’s event garnered.
“My favorite part was the atmosphere of a reunion for a lot of our police officers, as well as discovery of the museum by people who had not yet had the opportunity to visit,” Carlson said.
Carlson said she hopes people take the opportunity to socialize and learn about the police department while they examine classic cars.
“It’s just a gorgeous opportunity to get out with the family, see people you know, meet people you don’t know yet, see vehicles and see the museum,” Carlson said.
Hauden said all of the opinions he heard at last year’s show were positive.
“It seemed like everybody that I talked to enjoyed themselves,” Hauden said. “A lot of these shows are in parking lots or open fields with no shade, so that’s why I thought this would be a great place to have a show. With the museum open, it was a great venue.”
Hauden said he and the staff at the museum are thankful the community was so prepared to help.
“Without everyone’s support, the participants of the show and the companies that have donated, this wouldn’t have been possible,” Hauden said.
The deadline to pre-register cars for $8 was June 13.
The first 100 to pre-register will receive a T-shirt and dash plaques. From June 14 to the day of the show, registration will be $10.
In case of rain, the show will be pushed back to June 29.
For more information, visit toledopolicemuseum.com.