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C.A.R.S. Club: California Dreamin’

posted Oct 04, 2007 in ACADEMICS

Is it possible to get sick of looking at cars? The McPherson College C.A.R.S. Club ran an experiment and the answer is no! This past spring, thirty five students and three sponsors boarded a plane in Kansas City and headed for sunny California for a week of exploring the car industry.

The first day was spent getting acquainted with the Los Angeles area. It started out with an unscheduled tour of the Bothwell collection, which consisted mostly of brass era cars tucked away in a beautiful orange grove. The afternoon was spent roaming around Huntington Beach sightseeing, shopping and eating; some even braved the cold waters of the Pacific.

Scheduled tours began the next morning. During the course of the week, the group toured the personal collections of Peter Mullins, Jay Leno and Rick Rawlins. The Peterson Museum opened its doors for a private showing and rare tour of the vault where cars not on display are kept. The Nethercutt Museum gave us a tour of their amazing facilities and hosted a luncheon. McPherson auto restoration program graduate Nate Lander, who works for the Mercedez-Benz Classic Center, gave a tour through their facility. Also on the schedule was a tour of the massive collection at Astor Classics.

A notable highlight of the week was attending a taping of "The tonight Show" with Jay Leno. After the show, the group was able to spend a few minutes on the stage with Jay and have group photos taken. What a treat!

The last day in California was a free day, so everyone headed to Venice Beach to take in a little Southern California culture. There was some go-carting, browsing through car and bike dealerships and a quest for the Hollywood sign while a few braved the crowds at Disneyland.

Time spent in the vans were an experience all by themselves. Something about sitting in L.A. traffic must bring out sides of personalities, good or bad, that are ordinarily well camouflaged.

In short, the trip was a huge success. It was very well planned and executed. Special thanks to those that made this trip a reality and to all those that let us invade their collections. It was truly an honor to be allowed access to such amazing collections.


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