(Lima, OH) - Here's a recap of the 2011 All Ford & Mustang Show that was hosted by the Black Swamp Mustangs in Lima, Ohio. It was a sweltering summer day, but that didn't stop the crowd from coming to see these hot cars.
This was an interesting experience for me, as it was my first all Ford car show. A couple years ago, before I was interested in cars at all, I called every muscle car a Mustang, since I couldn't tell the difference. But hey, if I had gone to this show, I would have been right!
Mustangs, of course, were the most prevalent model at the car show. There was a Mustang for every fan--Mustangs young and old, every color and variation, and modified in a variety of ways, from bore and stroke to nitrous. Every car was pristine and gleaming in the midday sun, perfect in it's own way. But as perfect as each one was, everyone has to pick a favorite.
My personal favorite was a black Mustang named "Miss Mistress". Each Mustang at the show had its own version of impressive muscle, but this one stood out from the others with its looks. The hood featured a detailed, holographic mustang head painted on it. Along each side of the car was a sprinting mustang in holographic, running from fender to quarter panel. These subtle yet eye-catching details shimmered in the sun, drawing many patrons in to stop and admire.
Another eye-catching find among the Mustangs was a limited edition '94 Cobra SVT convertible, a replica of the 1994 Indianapolis 500 pace car. This bright red beauty was showing off its power under the hood, along with a plaque that indicated it was number 940 of 1000, and that it was assembled at the Dearborn plant on April 13th, 1994. This wasn't the only pace car replica either--there was also a 1979 Mustang Indy 500 pace car displaying its unique decal at the show.
While Mustangs made up the majority of the show, they were joined by other models in the Ford family. These models were typically older cars, maintained carefully by their owners. One model that I loved was the Galaxie, which was represented by a few vehicles at the show. The styling was nostalgic for anyone passing by, a memory of the space race for which it was named. Also making an appearance was the Thunderbird, which was a gleaming white, fourth generation model.
Another car brought to the show was a '50s-style Custom convertible, with highly polished chrome trim, accenting the black and sea-foam green paint. Under the hood, somewhat hidden by the air intake, was a plate proudly announcing, "I'm spending my kid's inheritance."
Arriving at the other end of the show, I found a different kind of Ford muscle. The Mustang may be Ford's muscle car, but Ford trucks do their share of hauling. Different generations and models of Ford trucks were represented, and a few had "original owner" tags showing--a testament to the passion of Ford owners. While Ford trucks can work hard, they can be used for play too. One particular Ranger, painted black with maroon flames along the sides, had a large, modified engine flashing from under the hood.
Unfortunately, due to the heat, I was not able to stay until awards were handed out. I made a quick stop at the Ford merchandise semi before I left, where those attending the show could purchase a t-shirt, hat, or accessory for every Ford enthusiast. Turning back towards the show, glancing over the lot from the hill the truck was parked on, I took a last look over the wonderland of cars. It was a great scene, with the smiling crowd and owners mingling and enjoying the day. The Black Swamp Mustangs held a great show.
About to leave, one more Mustang caught my eye, and I had to do a double take. It was a 1997 model, purple with two white racing stripes, making it look very similar to my '97 Probe. An idea was sparked in my mind; could my car be a part of this show in coming years? Perhaps. All I know is, it would be an honor to have my car displayed next to the ones I saw, which are proof of their owners' hard work and care. Whether I'm bringing a car to show or if I'm coming to admire the others, I cannot wait to see what next year's show holds.