June 16, 2024


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Athol Daily News – Car enthusiasts show off their wheels at final Orange Drag Strip Reunion


Printed: 6/19/2022 4:43:38 PM

Modified: 6/19/2022 4:45:34 PM

ORANGE — Len Chaloux after owned two 1966 Ford Fairlane GTs, 1 for drag racing and just one for avenue driving. He offered both equally automobiles to fork out for a down payment on a house, but always missed the vehicles.

When Chaloux retired in 2019, he went on an 11-thirty day period-lengthy mission to uncover his aged close friends. He observed the auto of his goals in Florida in February 2020. But, obtaining it a month ahead of the pandemic set in, he was unable to go to motor vehicle shows. Now he delivers his automobile throughout New England just about every weekend.

Chaloux was between the about 100 vehicle entrepreneurs at this year’s Orange Drag Strip Reunion car or truck demonstrate that took put Saturday at the Orange Municipal Airport. Automobile lovers from across the state and past flooded into the airport to show off their rides and chat shop.

The Orange Municipal Airport drag races ended up first held on July 18, 1954, when the Massachusetts Automotive Council acquired authorization to use the airport for “acceleration trials.” The pursuing yr, the New England Timing Association took around and ran the drag races until the end of racing in Orange in 1970.

John Durfee was too young to view the original races, but his sister was ready to go to. He launched the reunion of this party in 2011. The reunion has ongoing considering that the get started, touring to unique locations in earlier many years and taking a hiatus in 2020 and 2021 amid the world-wide pandemic.

Bernie Brouillet remembers likely out to dinner throughout from the Orange Municipal Airport on Father’s Working day Sunday in 1964, when he was 16 decades old. As he sat with his family, he grew antsy hearing revving engines across the avenue from the drag racers.

“They had been hitting speeds at 133 miles for every hour,” Brouillet mentioned. His enthusiasm for vehicles has not waned considering that.

“It would make you really feel fantastic when you choose a piece of steel and it comes to lifetime,” reported Dave Chagnon, an attendee who showed his motor vehicle at the celebration. Chagnon has owned his Chevrolet Chevette for approximately 50 decades, possessing rebuilt it a number of occasions.

“Cars weren’t just to shift you,” Chagnon claimed as he described car tradition in the 1960s. “Cars were your entertaining.”

“I arrived mainly because I usually preferred cars,” Stanley Miknait explained, sitting down in a tenting chair in front of his 1964 Ford Falcon. “It has usually been a great interest. I used to street race as a kid.”

Miknait then confirmed his Falcon on screen.

“I put my granddaughter in a car or truck seat in this a person,” he reported.

Durfee, acquiring retired and moved to Florida, reported this Orange Drag Strip Reunion will be the last he organizes.

“If people want to take more than the clearly show and provide racing back again, I would be pretty satisfied,” Durfee explained. “This is the very last exhibit for me.”

Make contact with Bella Levavi at 413-930-4579 or [email protected].


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