The Hippo


Apr 22, 2019








Lone Wolf Cruisers. Courtesy photo.

 Car Clubs

British Cars of New Hampshire
Central New Hampshire Corvair Club (Sanbornton)
East Coast Camaro Club (Nashua)
Search for “East Coast Camaro Club’s Facebook Group” on Facebook
Gate City Corvette Club (Nashua)
Lone Wolf Cruisers Car Club (Concord)
New Hampshire Mustang Club (Weare)
Search for “New Hampshire Mustang Club” on Facebook
Roadmen Car Club of New Hampshire
Search for “Roadmen Car Club New Hampshire” on Facebook
Sports Car Club of New Hampshire (Concord)
Upcoming car shows
• Enjoy barbecue and trucks at the annual Black Widow Customs Jeep and Truck Event on Saturday, July 21, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Bob Mariano Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram in Concord (146 Manchester St., Concord). The event will also include raffles, giveaways and lots of swag.Visit 
• Join the Merrimack Valley Military Vehicle Collectors for a military vehicle display at the 31st annual Weare Rally from Thursday, July 26, to Saturday, July 28, at the Weare Rally Site (14 Center Road, Weare). Check out over 100 antique military vehicles and enjoy trail rides, ice cream runs and scenic tours. There is a $5 entrance fee per family on Saturday, and campsites are also available for $35 each. Visit 
• Join British Cars of New Hampshire for the 22nd presentation of the Show of Dreams on Saturday, July 28, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Alvirne Hill House Field in Hudson (211 Derry Road, Hudson). The show field will be filled with over 30 types of antique British cars, as well as car-related vendors, craft vendors, music, food and a raffle and silent auction. Proceeds from the show will benefit the High Hopes Foundation of New Hampshire and the New Hampshire Food Bank. Admission is free, though donations are accepted. Registering a car for the show costs $25 in advance, $35 the day of and $10 for an additional car with the same owner. Visit 
• Enjoy a morning of exotic cars and coffee at the Sunnyside Acura Exotic Car Show on Sunday, Aug. 12, from 8 to 11 a.m. at Sunnyside Acura (482 Amherst St., Nashua). Vehicles from Ferrari, Lamborghini, Mercedes-Benz AMG, Porsche and BMW will be on display, and a 2017 Acura NSX will be available for test drives. Admission is free. Visit 
• JAK Kustoms will be hosting its second annual Salute the Troops Car Show on Saturday, Aug. 18, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Biergarten at Anheuser-Busch Factory in Merrimack (221 Daniel Wesbster Highway, Merrimack). Admission is free, but donations are accepted. All proceeds will benefit The Liberty House, a transitional home for veterans in Manchester. Visit 
• Stop by the second annual Cars and Cans Car Show on Saturday, Aug. 18, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. between the Pelham Police and Fire stations (6 Village Green, Pelham). Check out cool cars and enjoy a raffle, food, drink, snacks and ice cream. Admission is free, but canned goods, non-perishable items and cash donations are accepted. All proceeds benefit the Food Pantry of Pelham at St. Patrick Parish. Visit 
• Experience a global car show tour and motorsport festival with Hot Import Nights’ Night Shift and Drifting on Saturday, Aug. 25, and Sunday, Aug. 26, at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon (1122 Route 106, Loudon). Enjoy a car show, on-track racing activities, drifting on multiple courses, exotic car ride-alongs, food and family fun. Advance tickets cost $15 for one day and $25 for two days. VIP two-day tickets cost $45, and general admission at the speedway costs $20. Visit 
• The Mustang Car Club of New England will host the Mustang Club of America Grand National from Friday, Aug. 31, through Sunday, Sept. 2, at the Biergarten at Anheuser-Busch Factory in Merrimack (221 Daniel Webster Highway, Merrimack). Along with a car show and competition, the weekend will feature a pasta dinner and a casino night to benefit Shriners Hospitals for Children. Visit
• Plan on Cruising Downtown to see hundreds of cars on Saturday, Sept. 1, starting at 8 a.m. on Elm Street in Manchester. Last year’s event drew more than 1,000 cars to downtown Manchester, including antiques, custom cars, hot rods, trucks, motorcycles and more. Many businesses on Elm Street will also be open during the show. Admission is free, and vehicle registration details will be announced soon. Visit 
• Check out Wheels & Wings  on Saturday, Sept. 15, from 10 a.m. to noon at Nashua Airport (93 Perimeter Road, Nashua). Explore big trucks and planes and see how they work. There will also be a bounce house and magician. Please bring non-perishable food donations for 68 Hours of Hunger. Visit 
• Enjoy free coffee, donuts and a car show on Saturday, Sept. 22, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Classic Car Blasting in Hampstead (17 Gigante Drive, Unit 4, Hampstead). All special interest cars, trucks and bikes are welcome. This is a free event. Visit 
• Admire antique cars and motorcycles or bring your own to the Vintage Car Show on Saturday, Oct. 13, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Canterbury Shaker Village (288 Shaker Road, Canterbury). Food and drinks will be available from food trucks and the Shaker Box Lunch & Farm Stand. No pre-registration is required. Entry is free with regular admission, which is $19 for adults, $9 for youth ages six to 17 and free for children 5 and younger. Visit 
Summer Cruise Nights
Every week, car aficionados around the state come together to show off their rides in a low-key environment. Check out the following free Cruise Nights to see a variety of cars and enjoy food, music and more. 
Enjoy food, beverages and a DJ on the patio during Classic Cruise Night every Sunday through September from 5 to 8 p.m. at Murphy’s Taproom and Carriage House in Bedford (393 Route 101, Bedford). Visit 
Enjoy a relaxed environment at Candia Cruise Nights every Thursday through September from 5 to 8 p.m. at Candia First Stoppe Country Store (285 Old Candia Road, Candia). There’s always lots of great cars, trucks and other unique vehicles to see each week, along with music, 50/50 raffles and an award ceremony every night. All proceeds are donated to the Candia Volunteer Fire Department. Visit 
Bring your ride of choice to a Classic Car and Bike Night on the third Thursday of each month through Oct. 18, from 5 to 8 p.m. at Grateful Sleds in Chichester (345 Suncook Valley Road, Chichester). There will be food, live music and lots of interesting vehicles to check out. Admission is free. Visit 
Hang out with the Lone Wolf Cruisers during Cruise Night at Arnie’s every Tuesday until Oct. 2, from 5 to 8 p.m. at Arnie’s Place in Concord (164 Loudon Road, Concord). All customized and classic cars are welcome. Visit  
Enjoy two summer cruise nights, Sunday, Aug. 19, and Sunday, Sept. 16, from 3 to 6 p.m. at Revived Furniture and Home Decor in Derry (2 Island Pond Road, Derry). There will be music, food, games with prizes and plenty more fun. Visit 
All cars are welcome at Cruise Nights at Northside Grille every Wednesday until Sept. 5 from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at North Side Grille in Hudson (323 Derry St., Hudson). There will be music, giveaways, raffles and food and drinks inside.Visit 
Enjoy a night of cool cars at the firing range with Monday Night Car Shows every Monday until Sept. 24 from 5 to 8 p.m. at Manchester Firing Line (2540 Brown Ave., Manchester). Vote on your favorite car for the People’s Choice Award and meet some special guests. Visit 
Enjoy great food while gazing at hot rods, antiques and muscle cars during Cruise Nights at Axel’s every Wednesday until Sep. 12, from 5 to 9 p.m. at Axel’s Food and Ice Cream in Merrimack (608 Daniel Webster Highway, Merrimack). Visit 
Hang out with other auto enthusiasts at Cruise-N-Milford every Tuesday from 6 to 8 p.m. at Grill 603 in Milford (168 Elm St., Milford). There will also be a DJ and raffles. Visit
Meet up for Target Cruise Night every Friday during the summer months starting at 5 p.m. at the Target in north Nashua (600 Amherst St., Nashua). Search for the group  “Target Cruise Night in Nashua, every Friday” on Facebook. 
Enjoy fun for the whole family during  Cruise Night at Liar’s Paradise every Tuesday from 6 to 9 p.m. at Liar’s Paradise Pizza & General Store in Nottingham (118 Stage Road, Nottingham). Check out lots of cars, music, prizes, trivia, 50/50 raffles and more. Visit 
Grab a cone and check out some cars at Moo’s Cruise Nights, held on Mondays during the summer from 5 to 9 p.m. at Moo’s Place in Salem (15 Ermer Road, Salem). There will also be a DJ and 50/50 raffles. Visit 
Enjoy local coffee and cars with Southern New Hampshire Cars and Coffee on select Sundays until Nov. 18, at The Coffee Factory in Salem (99 Cluff Crossing Road, Salem). Bring your car, grab some breakfast and start the day off right. Visit 
Check out cool classic cars and hot rods at Classic Car Cruise Nights every Wednesday until Aug. 29, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Tilt’n Diner in Tilton (61 Laconia Road, Tilton). Drivers who bring their classic cars receive 10 percent off their food for the night. Visit

Summer Crusing
Gear up for car show season in the Granite State


 By Scott Murphy 
There’s nothing quite like a leisurely drive on a warm summer day, and for many Granite Staters, their ride is as important as the journey — which helps explain all the car shows and cruise nights that take place throughout the state each summer. They’re a way for car enthusiasts to show off their vehicles, talk with like-minded hobbyists and share their love of cars with the general public. The events are typically family-friendly and welcoming to anyone, including those who have never been to a car show and are looking for something new to do. They range from smaller gatherings at local food spots to massive annual traditions boasting hundreds of vehicles.  
Join the club
Like many car enthusiasts, Dean Gagne’s love for the road comes with a story from his childhood. Gagne is now treasurer and car show coordinator for the Gate City Corvette Club in Nashua, one of several New Hampshire car clubs that run many of the state’s summer cruise nights and car shows. His lifelong love of cars all started with a 1988 Corvette Coupe.
“There used to be a Corvette dealership in Manchester called Corvette City, and as a kid driving by seeing all the nice cars I always wanted one,” said Gagne. “When I got out of college I bought a brand new 1988 coupe and drove it all the time. If there wasn’t snow out I was driving it.”
Gagne joined the Nashua club soon after, and he’s watched the club change quite a bit over the last 30 years. Yet, he said, the central ethos is simple — hosting a wide range of events for a reason to pull the Corvette out of the garage. The club has put on everything from ice cream and coffee runs to an annual spring car show.
“It’s fun to have 10 to 30 Corvettes driving together,” said Gagne. “The comradery of the club is fun and feels like an extended family. Some of us have seen our kids grow up together.”
Unsurprisingly, Gagne said members need to own a Corvette at the time they join the club, though they can sell the car later on and still stay involved. But other clubs in the state and the various summer cruise nights are open to owners of any type of car.
This includes the Lone Wolf Cruisers Car Club in Concord, which hosts cruise nights every Tuesday during the summer at Arnie’s Place in Concord. Anyone is welcome to bring their car down and enjoy food, cars and a 50/50 raffle. Since the club started the tradition in the mid-’90s, the Lone Wolves have welcomed cars of every model, shape and size.
“The club is about the love of cars, not about how old the car is or what brand it is,” said Cody Dumont, secretary and treasurer of the club. “We’re open to all car enthusiasts who like the smell of gasoline.”
The Lone Wolves also puts on events geared toward getting out and hitting the road. Dumont said the club has hosted different cruises over the years, including a drive along the Kancamagus Highway and a tour of the state’s covered bridges. 
Unfortunately, some of the state’s car clubs are facing an obstacle in the road with aging memberships. Dumont said the Lone Wolves once had as many as 30 members, but membership has more recently fluctuated between 10 and 15 active members. He added that most of the club’s members are over 60 years old, and at 45 he’s the youngest active member.
“It seems like people under 35 don’t really join organized clubs as much as they like to just get together and hang out,” said Dumont. “I also think younger kids like different types of cars. Sometimes older car club members will say, ‘It’s not a car from the ’70s or ’80s, it doesn’t belong here.’ That really hurts car clubs.”
Gagne reported similar trends with the Gate City Corvette Club, which is down to around 65 members from as many as 100 in the past. He attributed the lack of youth members to the cost of owning a Corvette, or any nicer car for that matter. 
“If you want to buy a brand new Corvette, you’re talking between $60,000 to $70,000, which most young people can’t afford,” said Gagne. “Plus it’s a seasonal car, especially in New England. You typically need to own a second car, which only adds to the expense.” 
Still, others in the New Hampshire car scene agree with Dumont that younger car owners simply have changing interests and seek out different types of events. The annual Hot Import Nights at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon is a popular car show tour and motorsport festival that attracts attendees of all ages. The event includes exotic car ride-alongs and drifting, which is when a driver guides the car around a tight corner at high speeds.
“Some would argue that car culture among younger demographics is not what it was when some of us when were in our teens, but I think Hot Import Nights illustrates that there’s still a very vibrant culture,” said David McGrath, executive vice president and general manager of New Hampshire Motor Speedway. “When you look at some of the cars that people bring to the speedway, the customizations and performance improvements are nothing short of amazing.”
Engine for change
Cars aren’t the only thing New Hampshire car shows have in common. Conversations with organizers around the state revealed a consistent theme of raising money for local charities and awareness for unsung causes.
One of the longest-running charity car shows in the state is British Cars of New Hampshire’s annual Show of Dreams, which has raised money for New Hampshire charities since 1997. The event has been held at the Hill House Field at Alvirne High School in Hudson for the last few years and posted its most successful show to date in 2017. 
Last year’s show attracted over 200 cars and raised about $14,000 from donations, registration fees and sponsorships, which benefited the High Hopes Foundation of New Hampshire and the New Hampshire Food Bank. Bob Dougherty, prime minister of the British Cars of New Hampshire, said the club is pushing to have more cars at this year’s show, which will be held on Saturday, July 28, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Alvirne. The show field will also have car-related vendors, craft vendors, music, food and a raffle and silent auction.
“As much as we love driving our cars, we’re most proud of how much we give back to the community,” said Dougherty. “That’s the reason why we work on the Show of Dreams all year. The more cars we get, the more we raise for charity.”
The club also added a new fundraiser last year called the New England British Reliability Run. The event saw 25 British cars complete a three-day, 600-mile drive through the White Mountains to raise money for Boston Children’s Hospital. The inaugural run raised over $16,000 for the hospital. 
Dougherty hopes to bump that up to $20,000 this year. The three-day route for 2018 will run through the coasts of New Hampshire and Maine, starting on Friday, Sept. 7, at Historic Motorsports in Candia.
New rides
Two newer shows in New Hampshire will continue their fundraising efforts on Saturday, Aug. 18, at either  end of the state. Local nonprofit and car club JAK Kustoms will be hosting its second annual Salute the Troops Car Show from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Anheuser-Busch Factory in Merrimack. The show will feature food vendors and military vehicles brought in by the National Guard. 
Jeff Riley, president of JAK Kustoms and a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, said the event is meant to raise money for and recognition of local veteran organizations and causes. 
“Our goal is to help keep patriotism alive, and we want to make sure that aspect doesn’t get lost at our show,” said Riley. 
The inaugural show had just under 100 cars onsite and raised about $3,600 for the Manchester VA Medical Center. This year’s proceeds will benefit The Liberty House, a transitional home for veterans in Manchester. 
Over in Pelham, the second annual Cars and Cans Car Show will also be held on Aug. 18 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the village green. Along with accepting donations, the show will collect canned goods and non-perishable items for the Food Pantry of Pelham at St. Patrick Parish. Trisha and Glenn Muldoon launched the show last year after seeing a need in Pelham to support local food-insecure households.
“We had our daughter two and a half years ago, and we donated leftover baby food and formula that a family with a young child was able to use,” said Trisha Muldoon. “We had all this unopened, unexpired food that we could’ve just thrown away, but instead we were able to make an impact in the community.”
The Muldoons have always enjoyed going to car shows and decided to organize a show of their own to raise money for the Food Pantry of Pelham. They promoted the show via social media and at local car shows and ultimately attracted over 100 cars to the first Cars and Cans Car Show. The event raised $3,400 and collected about 1,174 pieces of food, which Trisha Muldoon said went on to support about 45 to 50 local households with 100 people for roughly six months. 
The couple is expecting a larger turnout this year and moved the show from St. Patrick Parish to the Pelham village green for extra space. Like last year, the event will have a DJ, several food vendors, raffle prizes and trophies for each car class. 
Not your average show
Not every car show is full of hot rods and muscle cars. Two annual car gatherings bring together unique vehicles built in a variety of time periods. 
The annual Show of Dreams allows the British Cars of New Hampshire to feature over 30 types of antique British cars. Everything from vintage Aston Martins to Jaguars to Austin-Healeys will be on display, offering a different look at luxury cars from past decades.
“The cars that were popular when I was growing up were these big huge things with fenders and chrome, but then there were these British cars that were different and tiny and kind of sexy,” said Dougherty. “They’re still very different and cool. We’ll drive around today and people will come up and say, ‘I had one of those.”’
Up in Weare, the Merrimack Valley Military Vehicle Collectors have put on an annual rally for over 30 years. The event typically showcases over 100 antique military vehicles from various U.S. conflicts. The organization will also offer trail rides, ice cream runs and scenic tours. The rally will run from Thursday, July 26, to Saturday, July 28, and will be held at a site behind Center Woods School in Weare.
“We’ve had people bring vehicles from World War II all the way through the modern generation,” said John Eldridge, president of the Merrimack Valley Military Vehicle Collectors. “The rally allows club members to display their restoration of some of these vehicles and share what they represent and the period they are from.” 

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