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Easter Vintage Car Parade Steps Off in Garden City

High Turnout for Community’s 55th Annual Spring Event

In Garden City, sunny skies helped draw crowds to the 55th Annual Easter Sunday Vintage Car Parade on April 4 at 1 p.m., which stepped off from Tenth Street on Franklin Avenue. Throngs of parade-goers came dressed in their Sunday best to watch the procession of more than 300 antique and classic cars roll through the streets.

Garden City Chamber Executive Director Althea Robinson was thrilled by the enthusiastic response from the community. “It’s one of the largest turnouts we’ve ever had,” Robinson said. “Mother Nature has smiled on us; the weather is absolutely gorgeous. This is the nicest Easter I can remember since I’ve been doing this,” she exclaimed.     

Now in its 55th year, Robinson, along with other members of the organization, have been involved with the Easter parade almost since its inception. “It started with 14 cars in 1956…and you see it now today, so it has evolved into this major event,” she said.

Spectators were invited to view the classic cars as they lined up in parking field 9E between Ninth and Tenth streets prior to the parade. Car enthusiasts viewed some of the world’s most priceless models in every color imaginable, from vintage Corvettes and Cadillacs to Firebirds and Thunderbirds. One registered car exhibitor, Paul Brosen, showcased his famous 1917 Studebaker, Series 7, which is currently being used in an upcoming HBO pilot Boardwalk Empire directed by Martin Scorcese. “It’s an original, unrestored car, 92 years young,” Brosen said. “I enjoy it every day. It runs, it starts, it goes,” he explained. Brosen added that using vintage cars in films is a great way to pay homage to them. He also owns eight other models of the same vintage, mostly Model T’s that are being used for the exhibition.

Rob and Margaret Perpall, former 12-year residents of Garden City, were elated to bring their 1962 Pontiac Catalina Convertible to the exhibit. The Perpalls purchased the car in California in hopes that some day they would get the chance to actually participate in the event.

“We always said that we’re going to get a car and be in the parade because we loved it ever since we’ve lived here,” they said. Despite having moved out of the village, they said they miss Garden City, but they always come back for this special day. “It’s a big Easter tradition for us. We always come,” they said.