CAM Car Show 2002

Madison’s Clarkson among
car club fanatics at River Run VII

By Stacie Laker
Staff Writer

(May 2002) MADISON, Ind. – Rarely in this day and age comes a time when younger and older generations can come together and enjoy similar interests, but with the CAM River Run it happens every year.
On May 25, the Choice Automobiles of Madison (CAM) Car Club will host their River Run VII on the Riverfront in downtown Madison. The River Run features cars of all kinds ranging from the 1920s to new low-riding cars.
One person who has seen River Run grow over the last ten years is Hanover resident, Delmar Clarkson. Clarkson started getting into classic cars later in life, not getting his first classic car, a ’52 Mercury, until the age of 30, and not fixing it up until 11 years later, at the age of 41. The ironic thing about the car is that it was literally at his footsteps since 1952, when his brother bought the car new for $2,400.

Delmar Clarkson

Delmar Clarkson poses
with his 1952 Mercury

The car continued to stay in the Clarkson family, having Clarkson’s brother, mother and then sister own it before buying it himself.
After years of refurbishing the car, Clarkson estimates that he has put nearly $6,000 into it, and it shows.
The sea-foam green beauty stays at Clarkson’s residence, only making it out of the garage to special events like the CAM River Run, and other area car shows.
“It takes TLC and a lot of cleaning, cleaning and more cleaning,” chuckled Clarkson when describing what it takes to get the cars ready to show. The careful care that Clarkson puts into his vehicles can be seen on the sparkling chrome, flawless interior and intricate attention to detailing on the cars, which is commonly seen on many of the cars presented at car shows. But Clarkson didn’t learn the tricks of the trade from his father or brother, rather he said he just has a “natural knack” for working on cars.
But, the ‘52 Mercury isn’t Clarkson’s only pride and joy, he also owns a ‘candy apple’ red ‘66 Mustang convertible that his wife, Eula wanted, only to find himself buying his own convertible a couple years later, a ‘68 Oldsmobile convertible.
But don’t think that Clarkson’s wife,Eula is out of the car scene herself, she gets involved by holding the position of Cruise-in Chairperson, handling the details on the Cruise-in that is held throughout the summer months at the Wal-Mart Supercenter in Madison.
The Clarkson’s stay very active with the CAM Car Club and stress that “people are missing out on a lot of fun” if they aren’t taking part. “[We] really enjoy the younger people” that are taking part in the car shows, “they are a good group of kids,” agreed the Clarkson’s on how a new generation is getting involved in car shows, although with different styles of cars. The difference between the classic cars of the CAM Car Club and the newer cars is that the younger people “drive [their] cars everyday and still have oil and grease on the engines,” stated Clarkson. Although at River Run, the CAM Car Club has divisions on cars so each division will have a separate judging, while overall awards also are given like Best of Show and Mayor’s Choice.
“I’m amazed at the number of people that take part in the event and the pride [the participants] take into their cars,” commented Madison Mayor Al Huntington. “The club has a lot of enthusiasm,” he added, and the people that come to see the cars are very complimentary about the club and the town, not to mention “the city is a perfect setting with the riverfront.” Estimates provided by the Madison Visitors Center state that last year’s CAM River Run brought approximately 1,500 people into Madison. Although Vice President of the CAM Club Bruce Anderson believes that number is quite conservative on the fact the they expect 350 to 500 cars to participate in the show.
The CAM Car Club River Run is a family event that attracts people of all ages. With an estimated 30 members, they keep busy with trips to other area car shows, Poker Runs, Cruise-in’s, special trips to the Speedway and much more, anyone could have fun being a member, or just taking part in the events.

• The CAM River Run VII will be held on May 25, rain or shine, with registration starting at 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. (slow time), when awards will be presented by Mayor Huntington. For more information call (812) 265-3620 ext. 4004.

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