How the Old Bolts Started...
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Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin
“Back in 1973 when everyone was into Corvettes, Arvid was restoring his 1938 Chevy coupe,
the same coupe he drove to high school and
bought when he was 12 with his paper route money.
With a new paint job and an uncertainty that the hot rod would actually make it that far,
Arvid and his best friend Doug headed off
to the Slow Poke’s car show in Peoria, IL.
They were on the road for a long time wondering if they even had the right weekend,
grinned ear to ear as they began to see other hot rods on the Interstate.
That was the year after the very first NSRA Street Rod Nationals.
After a fun-filled weekend in Peoria, Doug was also “hooked” on street rodding,
and bought a 32 Ford 3 window that fall. The next
summer Arvid and Doug took their cars
to Peoria, and realizing that there seemed to be advantages to listing club membership
show entry forms, filled in “Old Bolts” on the registration form. They hoped no one
checked to see if they were a legit club.
Arvid, Doug, and their growing group of street rodder enthusiasts held the first
Over the Hill Car Show and Picnic at Arvid’s farm
to celebrate his 30th birthday.
That event eventually outgrew the farm and was held at various Sturgeon Bay locations
over the next
several years. The theme was always having fun with cars—it didn’t matter
what make or model, restored or not; everyone shared a common
interest. Proceeds were
always donated to a local charity. The show was taken over by other service clubs and
continues today under
a different name. Arvid still has an “Over the Hill Anniversary Party”
every 10 years, most recently in 2009 when he turned 60. Over
75 cars and 300 people
were in attendance to help celebrate his birthday. Old photos, old T shirts, and three
generations of car lovers
came out for a nostalgic afternoon.
The Old Bolts, still a “non-club” club, get together via a phone tree when they want to cruise
or just hang out. They organize and
run the car show part of Sturgeon Bay’s Harvest Festival
in September and have raised thousands of dollars for charity. Recipients
of the donations are listed on our Charitable Donations page.
Old Bolts Car Club