“Friend with Vettes” visit the Corvette Museum

Special to the Outlook

For a Corvette car owner, a visit to the birthplace of every Corvette manufactured since 1981 is high on their bucket list.  Seventeen “Friends with Vettes” from Tallahassee were able to scratch that off of their lists when they visited the National Corvette Museum and Plant in Bowling Green, Kentucky on August 25th and 26th. For the “Friends,” who get together each month for breakfast, Vette road trips and just fun, this was well worth the visit.  General Motors has been producing the Chevrolet Corvette since 1953, but moved in 1981 from St. Louis, Missouri to this 212 acre, site that includes a working plant with one million square feet of space.


The “Friends,” who included Reginald Boone, Ralph Coleman, Jr., Juan Collins, Fred and Beverly Gainous, Robert “PipPip” Jackson, Ronald and Lenita Joe, Wilbur Johnson, Darrin Rich, Larry and Betty Rivers, Isaac and Phillis Simmons, Cleve and Annie Joyce Williams, and Frank Williams,  had their own personal guided tour of the plant, a working factory, to watch the birth of,  and  the making of the icon  from inception to the thrilling drive off the end of the assembly line.  Corvette buyers can order their car, and come to the plant to watch the birth.  Corvette also offers the opportunity for the buyer to help build the engine for their Vette. What a thrill that would be!


The National Corvette Museum was on tap for the second day. Their personal guide met them in the Corvette Club Room, where they would later have lunch, and gave them a brief history of the museum before beginning the tour. The non-profit museum, which opened in 1994,  celebrates and educates the public about the invention of the Corvette, and preserves its past, present and future through pictures, artifacts, movies and of course cars.  Some of the attractions were: NASA’s Corvette Connection, the Chevrolet Theater, the Nostalgia Area, KidsZone, the Design and Engineering Area, and the Enthusiast Area. The highlight of this museum visit was a chance to relive the Corvette Skydome Sinkhole of February 12, 2014.  The “Friends” actually walked on the spot of the crash in the Skydome and Hall of Fame which is a restored room that features an outline of the hole and the cave that lies beneath. Other features included pace cars, anniversary and special edition Vettes plus the World’s only 1983 Corvette.  The center spire spotlights the Hall of Fame Inductees.  On display in the main entrance to the museum are new Corvettes waiting for their owners to pick them up.  There was also the opportunity in the lobby of the museum to “try a Corvette on for size.” Although none of the “Friends” purchased a new Corvette this time, they are all waiting with baited breath to find out if their raffle ticket will make them the lucky winner of a new convertible Corvette.