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Classic cool: 20th annual Perham Cruisers car show

Some members of the Perham Area Cruisers car club take a little time to swap stories in front of Wally Morton's classic car.

The Perham Area Cruisers classic car club will be celebrating its 20th annual car show this Sunday, July 8, at the East Otter Tail County Fairgrounds in Perham, from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Long-time club members LeRoy Wegscheid, Wally Morton, Jerry Teig and Shawn Weatherhead described in an interview all the changes they have made to their own classic cars over the years. Each of the four own two collector cars, though they joked about having plenty of pieces of other cars at home.

They all agreed that customizing the classic cars is what makes owning them so enjoyable. Whether it's customizing tailpipes, designing a vanity license plate or hanging fuzzy dice on the mirror, classic car and truck owners spend a lot of time fixing up their cars to suit their preferences.

Morton, for example, is a retired fireman from St. Cloud; he began replacing parts on his Model T to look more like a little Ford fire truck. He used real fire equipment to complete the effect - a fire hose lies folded in the back and a siren horn is built into the front.

The owners really get to be creative with their cars, Weatherhead said. Some parts they install aren't even really meant for vehicles, like the grenade that replaces the handle on Weatherhead's Ford Grenade gear stick.

"I couldn't believe they sell grenades on eBay," Weatherhead said, but that's where he found it, and for under $5.

The Perham Area Cruisers, with more than 40 members, has put on some big shows over the years, the guys said. One especially memorable show had more than $2 million worth of cars.

July's show is expected to bring in more than 80 cars and will offer trophies for the Sweet 16 award, People's Choice Award and Best of Show. Cost to enter is $3, or free for seniors and children under 12.