2018 50th GWG Pasadena Convention
Linda and Tom Bau
Brenda and Bill Galloway
Sherrill and Paul Colony
Pasadena, a city of history and stature seemed perfect for our 50th convention. Even with that, it is not the place that makes a great convention, it is the people. To experience the hugs, laughter and listening to all the conversation as each day unfolds really tells the story.
It began Tuesday afternoon, when we saw the “early birds” standing on the steps of the historic Baldwin House, and visiting the first of the collectors, who spoke of his racecars, cobras, motorcycles and more. His silver Gullwing stood in the middle. Tuesday night was "Pub Night" and what a gathering it was! A kick off of wine and pub food waiting for each new person to arrive. Among them the Kadmiels from Israel.
Wednesday and it is official and we welcome everyone. The welcome reception is the first time to be all together in one room with cocktails, Italian food and more greetings.
Thursday began when the second of our car collectors gave us the opportunity for breakfast among his classics. Later, Martin Cushway, with his vast knowledge of the 300 SL, came from England to conduct the tech session.
A Pasadena adventure included a tour of the Huntington Library, amazing gardens, and the Japanese Tea House that drew us into another world.
Later we were immersed in the history of the Rose Bowl and were the only people in the stadium, looking down at the field and surrounding bleachers. It was still and surreal and just waiting for the next event.
Thursday dinner was held in the Valley Hunt Club with its refined tradition. Cocktails in the foyer led to dinner with its beautifully decorated tables and chandeliers. Libby Wright, the first woman elected to be President of the Association, was our guest speaker. We watched an informative video of the history of the Rose Parade. We were now part of this history and were “rosed.”
On Friday, the 300SLs led the way for our Friday Rally to Thousand Oaks. The third of our private car collectors greeted us warmly at their home car collection among their vineyards. It was an impressive sight of sports cars with the collector’s 300 SL Roadster taking center stage.
Next we ventured on to our fourth private car collection and entered to the smell of cookies being baked in their ‘50s style kitchen. Cars and memorabilia of every description made the tour indescribable. It was a unique example of motoring history served with B-B-Q.
Saturday, our Gull Wings and Roadsters lined up in all their glory at the car show. Proudly they stood with our dedication to keeping their history living forever. Mimosa drinks led the way to our lunch amid the car show with white tent, tables and chairs and colorful bouquets of flowers.
This was the 50th convention of our club, a special moment celebrated Saturday night at the historic Langham Huntington. What better way to start the evening than with Pink Champagne! It was the time to dress-up in all our glory, and we did. It was a beautiful sight to enter the Georgian Ballroom for the banquet. The setting was from a picture book with perfectly set tables and lovely flowers. The Viennese Dessert table was a chance to visit while choosing your treat from the selections.
Awards to the special people who keep our club the greatest saw Pat Matthews and Patti Paulson receive the Distinguished Service award for their never ending GWG contributions. The Pasadena Convention Committee was presented roses and received a much-appreciated thank you.
All convention attendees experienced a personal moment very important to us. For being a part of the 50th GWG convention celebration, a crystal hologram of the Gullwing or Roadster was boxed and tied in a silver bow to be opened all at once. The response was just what we had hoped and the surprise was on all faces. The crystal holograms were exquisite.
On Sunday, our farewell breakfast was not the final moment for many. On to the fifth private car collection tour. The collector is magnanimous in his joy of classic cars and each has a story. He speaks enthusiastically and we were all awed.
The day concluded with lunch on the Sunset Strip and a tour of the Petersen Auto Museum, or a plane to catch, or a drive home. The 50th GWG convention had come to an end with lasting memories. We had great joy watching each event take place and being with all of our friends. Thank you to everyone who was there to be a part of this great celebration.