Great Race Day 6: Shipshewana, Hickory Corners, Ypsilanti


Some fans of the Stars and Stripes and also of preserving a piece of history, the Bomber Plant in Willow Run.

Day 6 of the Great Race 2017 took us through a few more towns that are fun to pronounce and even more fun to visit. After carefully avoiding the Amish horse drawn carriages that were out and about on the route today, we made a morning pit stop in the small town of Shipshewana, Indiana. This town is special for car enthusiasts because it is home to Hosteler’s Hudson Auto Museum. What started as Eldon Hosteler’s single vehicle more than 25 years ago has grown to include the largest collection of Hudson automobiles in the world. The collection includes the Hudson, Essex, Terraplane, Railton, and Dover brands. We certainly didn’t have enough time to see everything but it was impressive nonetheless. Some of the Great Racers had even less time because many of them were stopped by a train that took seven minutes to pass. Another team had to remain on the side of the road since they had witnessed an accident and the police requested a statement from them. It’s all a part of rallying. Sometimes you get stopped by a tractor, sometimes a train. Experienced rally participants know to take it all in stride. It was crowded in Shipshewana, but there were even more people and more cars waiting for us at the lunch stop in Hickory Corners, Michigan. In addition to a delicious lunch, we had the opportunity to visit the Gilmore Car Museum.  More than a one-building museum, this is one of Michigan’s largest collections of classic and vintage automobiles; and we believe this is one of the first times it was open to the public for free. There were at least 5,000 visitors checking out over 300 vintage and collector vehicles and motorcycles from all eras.  The displays are spread out over a dozen vintage buildings located on 90 acres. It was wonderland for us to enjoy. Again, we wish we could have lingered much longer but we had to press on to Ypsilanti. Ypsilaniti, Michigan is known in automotive circles as the town with the last Hudson dealership. That dealership has been converted to become the Ypsilanti Automotive Heritage Museum. It’s also where we had dinner on Day 6. This small town, which is just outside of Ann Arbor, is also home to Willow Run, the World War II production plant that produced the B-24 Bomber. On a side note, the plant was recently saved from demolition but SaveTheBomberPlant is  still raising funds for its restoration and renovation so it can become the home of a new air museum.  History like that deserves to be preserved but it doesn’t come easily or cheaply. Car enthusiasts may know that Willow Run is also home to the auto manufacturing plant where the infamous Chevrolet Corvairs were built. Congratulations to all the teams that finished today. We are looking forward to welcoming all the Great Race teams and their cars to the Stahl Auto Museum in Chesterfield for Friday’s lunch stop. The public is also welcome to come and view the cars as they pull in and the museum will be open to the public after the racers leave. For more information visit the Stahl Auto Museum website.

Someone wants the car behind them to stop. Very creative William.

Amish horse drawn carriages, sometimes with no drivers, are a common site along the road in some areas of Ohio and Indiana.

Another great car-themed t-shirt spotted.

We like your logo and your all-over sublimated bowling shirt.

Trevor showing his inner Wolverine…since we are very close to Ann Arbor, home to University of Michigan, he is sporting his best Maize and Blue.

Hoping the ominous rain clouds will pass without a shower…

Another great piece of walking artwork.

Thanks to friends Betsy and Art Getz for coming out to cheer us along on the route today. It means a lot.

The Hosteler’s Hudson museum in Shipshewana, Indiana was a great pit stop.

Great Racers parked on the grounds of the Gilmore Car Museum in Hickory Corners, Michigan.

The 1941 Packard driven by Brett with navigator Dan arrives in Hickory Corners.

Corky is making announcements to the crowd and welcoming the Great Racers.

The American Legion presents the flag and their colors.

Great Racers arriving in Hickory Corners.

An impressive collection of aces!

More stormy skies driving through Battle Creek, Michigan.

Great to be welcomed by a local marching band.

The Stars and Stripes looks right at home on the grounds of the Gilmore Museum.

Driver Dom leaves the GTO to grab some lunch.

Check out the old buildings in the background on the grounds of the Gilmore museum.

Here’s another car buff wearing his favorite t-shirt while meeting Great Racers.

Classic cars, definitely a niche market for anyone in the t-shirt printing business.

Remember when gas stations looked like this? Thanks for preserving and educating at the Gilmore Museum.

The weather held and the crowds are out in full force when the Great Racers arrive in Ypsilanti, Michigan.

Josh and Trevor earn another ace upon completion of 8 separate legs of rallying today in Ypsilanti, Michigan.


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