Day 7 of the Great Race 2017: Stahls Auto Museum and Frankenmuth

The 1967 GTO that Mary and I started the race with, now being driven by Dom and Kevin, was the first car to enter the lineup at the Stahls Auto Museum lunch stop.

Leaving Ypsilanti this morning, Mary and I headed directly to the Stahls Auto Museum where we were hosting the Great Racers for lunch. We got to take the direct route down I-94, since we are no longer in a rally vehicle. The racers followed a very challenging course route, zig-zagging their way through farmland and two lane roads. But everyone did eventually make it and the Spirit of Stahls cars were allowed to be the first to drive in. Thank you to everyone who came out to Chesterfield to cheer on the rally participants. We set up bleachers outside for fans to enjoy the parade. Before the cars arrived, the crowd was treated to a recounting of the original 1908 New York to Paris Race by Jeff Maul. Jeff is the great grandson of the 1908 Great Race winner George Schuster. Schuster was the mechanic/driver of the famous Thomas flyer that won the 1908  race. And while that Thomas Flyer is now housed at the National Auto Museum in Reno, Nevada, we have a nearly identical Thomas Flyer housed at the Stahls Auto Museum. We would be remiss not to thank Terri and the entire Stahls Auto Museum team of volunteers that worked so many hours to make sure everything went off without a hitch during the lunch stop. Mary and I are very grateful for all your hard work. Thank you to all the volunteers who showed up to help out. We couldn’t have done it without you. After enjoying a filling lunch, the Great Racers left Chesterfield to finish up what was one of the most strenuous days of the race. With 9 legs total, they worked their way north to Frankenmuth. Josh Hull, driver of the Stars and Stripes said that it was the toughest day he ever experienced in three years of rallying. Everyone was thankful to arrive in Frankenmuth for dinner and some much needed rest. If you’ve never heard of or been to Frankenmuth, it is quite the destination. Known as Michigan’s “Little Bavaria,” it is famous for Bronner’s, the world’s largest Christmas store. It is also home to the Bavarian Inn and Zehnders, two of the largest independently owned restaurants in the country, that serve world renowned chicken dinners. Now there are also waterparks, arcades, zip-lining, petting zoos, you name it. There is a lot to do there and if you ever have the chance you should drop by. They are experts at making people feel at home, sharing old world German hospitality. It made for a wonderful Great Race stop.Tomorrow, we continue the route north, to Alpena and Sault St. Marie. Can’t wait.


The 1941 Packard, along with Dan, Brett and William Stahl pull into the Stahls Auto Museum for day 7’s lunch stop during the Great Race 2017.

The Stars and Stripes arrives at the Stahls Auto Museum.

With Corky Coker of Coker Tires at the Stahls Auto Museum.

With Mike Goodman, announcer for the Great Race. He’s a natural when it comes to public speaking.

These ladies know how to have a good time. We’re glad you enjoyed the museum!

Corky with the museum’s Thomas Flyer, similar to the car the won the original Great Race in 1908.

Lunch stop on Day 7 at the Stahls Auto Museum was a success.

Thank you to everyone behind the scenes who helped make the lunch stop such a special event.

The backdrop is a Mortier Key Dance organ from 1924.

We were happy to host this stop for our Great Race Family.

Ready to greet our guests at the Stahls Auto Museum.

Welcome to Chesterfield! We are thankful the predictions for rain didn’t hold true.

The Leslie Special and the Hannibal 8 from the Great Race movie outside on display.

Kevin and Dom being interviewed in Frankenmuth.

Car 90 greeted by Corky as it rolls into Frankenmuth, Michigan for dinner and the overnight stop.

Day 7 comes to an end in lovely Frankenmuth, Michigan.

Two Spirit of Stahls’ teams meet to discuss the days’ travels.

So lucky to have more family members join us for dinner in Frankenmuth. Dan is glad to see wife Alda and his two boys.

Brett adds another ace to the side of the 1941 Packard. Congratulations Dan and Brett. It was a tough day today.

Frankenmuth is another perfect place to stop along a Great Race route.

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