On a beautiful fall Friday, the Auto Collision and Automotive Service Technology programs departed for the Clermont County Fairgrounds for the Annual Pumpkin Run Nationals Car Show. Students enjoyed close to 2,500 entries of antique cars and checked under the hoods as well as the restoration jobs completed on many of the older model cars. It is the favorite field trip of many of the car aficionados!
Auto Collision Instructor Ric Kruse said it is a very valuable trip for the students and that he is flattered that the Fastiques Rod and Custom of Southern Ohio, the local car club that sponsors the show, invites the students to attend the show each year for free. “The members always take time during the show to talk to our students and share their love of the industry. This information is priceless for our students and helps them to better understand all aspects of the automotive industry. I truly appreciate their generosity and the promotion of the industry to our students.”
When discussing the trip with the students, it was not surprising to discover that each program came back with different take on the show. Ryan Wilson, a junior Auto Collision student from Williamsburg, thought the best part of the Pumpkin Run was seeing all the old cars and how people kept them in their best condition. “I loved to see the body and paint work on all the cars.”
In the Automotive Service Technology classroom, the discussion was more about what was under the hood. Travis Kinnard, a junior from Bethel-Tate, learned that lots of old cars could be restored to look nice, but he definitely had more interest in what powered the vehicles. “I enjoyed seeing all the big block engines and what powered the cars.”
The show took on a new meaning this year as one of our Automotive Service Technology students had his own entry in the show. Tyler Frazee, a senior from Williamsburg, had purchased and restored a 1968 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme Holiday Coupe. Tyler and his dad, William, spent the past year rebuilding the engine and transmission, completing body and paint work, and restoring the interior. Tyler showed a “before” picture, and it was hard to believe it was the same car. The car had severe body damage and the engine compartment looked as if someone had put the parts in a blender!
This was Tyler’s first show and he was proud of his entry and praised the training he received at Grant in the Automotive Service Technology department to make the engine and transmission rebuilding possible. He enjoyed showing off the “almost” finished project to staff members and friends from school. He had many positive comments at the show from other exhibitors and show visitors. “They thought it was rare that a young person had selected the 1968 Cutlass. Most younger kids like the hot rods!”
Wesley Stevens, an Auto Collision junior from New Richmond, summed up the most valuable purpose of the trip. “The best part of going to the Pumpkin Run was seeing all the old cars and getting ideas for rebuilding my own hot rod in the future.”