Throwback – Thunderbird Appreciation Day 2019

Officially held on the third Sunday of May, Thunderbird Appreciation Day was established by a few TBird clubs as a day on which owners of the cars are encouraged to get their ‘Birds out to enjoy them and share them with the public. Owners and clubs around the world take part, with our own – the Calgary Thunderbird Club – being no different.

This year we actually held the (slightly subdued) festivities yesterday – Saturday – even though the official date is in fact today. Call it Thunderbird Appreciation Weekend?

With restrictions eased a bit we were able to gather a moderate number of our club members together for a spaced-out picnic lunch/meet (thanks to Jeff and Gary for letting it be hosted in the parking lot of their hotel) and had a great time catching up given that most of us hadn’t seen each other in some time now. Mario was even able to swing by after work with Selsun, and following the formal conclusion of the gathering we took it and the Thunderbird on a cruise to Black Diamond to enjoy the nice weather. During the drive there and back we also encountered a seemingly endless stream of other classics and antiques (there were multiple cruises taking place), exchanging waves and thumbs-up with the owners as you do. 

All of this is serving to be a lead-in to photos from Thunderbird Appreciation Day, but as noted by the title of the post the photos themselves are from last year’s event instead. With – obviously – no restrictions of any sort in place we were able to host a larger cruise out to High River, where we were treated to a lunch at Eamon’s Garage and had the opportunity to explore it as well as the “Call of the West” museum next door.

Eamon’s Garage was originally run from the 1930’s through to the 50’s in what is these days the Northwest part of the city, but instead of being lost to time was preserved and relocated to its current site. The museum meanwhile, quite literally next door, held a seemingly endless supply of memorabilia and artifacts revolving around – to quote their site here since I can’t do it any better myself – “the history of the influence that Ford and oil companies had on the agricultural way of life, from the early 1900’s to the 1960’s and beyond”.

I adore seeing stuff like this – items from an earlier time preserved to protect and share their stories – and had a ton of fun poking around with Mario and the rest of the club as we explored the venue to take in what was sitting inside each building.

As this was never originally shot for the site I didn’t take a ton of photos but grabbed a few here and there which I hope you’ll enjoy taking a peek at: some from both Eamon’s and the museum, some of the cars that joined us, and a couple of Jeff’s Viper from when we were laughing at the mess he made coming down one of the muddy roads. It seemed fitting to have these up on the site today to mark this year’s Thunderbird Appreciation Day, and have something a bit different mixed in with the rest of our photos and stories.

If you’re ever in the area, stop by to check out the garage and museum; they’re pretty neat pieces of local history.

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-Bill

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