Corvettes of MN
Events Gallery

These are a collection of past events and photos. We try to post these after each event.

COM Annual Awards Party, January 14, 2023

Thirty COM members and guests gathered at the Warming House Room in the Fireside Lounge in Rosemount on Saturday, January 14th for our annual COM Awards Party. Governor Don G introduced the 2022 and 2023 COM Board of Directors, and also the event chairpersons for each of our events from the season. We paused a moment to remember Dave Zimdars, long-time COM member who passed during the 2022 season. Wally spoke about the need to bring new people into the Club, and John Boos introduced four new or prospective members he brought into our group.

After ordering from the menu, a raffle drawing was held for a large number of door prizes. Enough prizes had been donated that everyone in attendance was a winner, and some were able to take home additional prizes. Donors of the door prizes included Shawn and Jan H., Don G., Wally M., Charlie H., Ron M., and Bill H. Prizes ranged from several Corvette books to multiple hand tools to boxes of Valentines candy, with lots of other interesting selections. Prizes also included two Corvette models, and three new Corvettes (although in 1/64th scale!).

We recognized four of our members for their very significant contributions to the club. Honored with recognition plaques were:

Max Allers, who has designed and has maintained our website for many years, and has promoted our Facebook presence in recent years. His tremendous visual creativity and technical expertise have been a major assets to the club, and has brought many new members to our organization. All I can add is “Wooooo!”

Deb Nielsen has done a fantastic job as our Membership Director, following husband Dan in that position. Under Deb’s guidance, our membership records have been updated and now include a monthly listing of members and full contact information. Also included is a comprehensive list of dates for when members joined COM that we haven’t had in many years, as well as notation of those with NCCC memberships. Deb was unable to attend the luncheon, and will be receiving a plaque and recognition at a future date.

Wally Mahlum was recognized for his many donations to the Club. He has served as our Competition Director for many years, has chaired our autocross events at DCTC, has been the COM Representative to the Metropolitan Council of Sports Car Clubs, and has coordinated and promoted the MCAS (Metr COuncil Autocross Series) for many years. Wally has been our Checkered Flag newsletter editor and publisher now for many years, and has put out both print and on-line versions of the newsletter in recent years, and has promoted the transition for many members to the on-line version, in full color!

George Haun was recognized for over fifty years of service as Treasurer of our Club. Also mentioned were George’s activity in autocross, rally and cruise events as participant and organizer, and as our Chairperson for several years in the Corvette Club Drag Race event we did with Suburban Corvettes for several years at Minnesota Dragways. And yes, his big-block Corvette was a drag racing monster! George was unable to attend the luncheon, and will be honored with the presentation at a future COM meeting.

Following being served with our meals, those attending were able to visit and share stories with each other into the afternoon. Again, a good time and gathering of friends and supporters of COM.

Click on photo to launch a photo gallery of the event!


Later on January 14, (2023) some of us joined others for the annual Awards Party for the MCAS Series, MOWOG Series, and MAC (Minnesota Autosports Club) awards program at the Woodbury Green Mill. About 70 were in attendance, including Wally, Don, and O’Meara’s from COM. Wally and Ron Hirabashi opened the evening giving out the MCAS Awards (including Don G, 1st Place in A Street). The attendees applauded Wally for his years of service coordinating the MCAS Series. Also Don G. was recognized for  50 consecutive years as an autocross entrant. Former member Robin Newborg did a masterful job giving out the MOWOG Series awards, with lots of photos and humor included. COM members who qualified for recognition in the series included Jeff Lawrence (2nd Place), Don Gettinger (3rd Place), and Dennis O’Meara (4th Place), all in the A Street Class.

COM Fall Cruise, October 15, 2022

Our annual Fall Cruise took place on Saturday, October 15. After snowfall and cold on the 14th, we were treated to dry roads,  52 degree weather, and sunny skies for most of the Cruise. The fall colors were about at their peak this year in our part of the state (actually two states). We had about 25 vehicles, with about 20 Corvettes ranging from JD’s C-2 ’67 ‘Vette up to 2022 Corvettes, with every generation from C-2 through C-8 present, along with a handfull of non-Corvettes (BMW, Volvo, SRT, Chevelle, Malibu). Roughly 35 participants were on the Cruise.

We started at the Oak Park Heights McDonald’s, where several arrived early for breakfast items. We travelled across the new St. Croix Crossing bridge into Wisconsin where we enjoyed some twisting two-lane roads in the area of the Bass Lake Cheese Factory. Our next winding road was Trout Brook Road, one of Wisconsin’s designated Rustic Roads, along the Willow River and past a former trout hatchery leading into Hudson, before heading south through a couple of large sandstone road cuts to our first rest stop at a River Falls Kwik Trip station. After a brief rest, we next again traveled south and west on  Happy Valley Road, another designated Rustic Road, past fields of pumpkins and sunflowers. After crossing the St. Croix river at Prescott, we climbed a steep winding road (St. Croix Trail) to arrive at the Carpenter Nature Center, and orchard. Heading north we went through picturesque Afton, then turned onto Stagecoach Trail and Indian Trail passing along much of the Belwin Nature Center property, and returned to Oak Park Heights, to the Muddy Cow Bar and Grille. Most of the participants stayed for food and beverages. Out 90-mile journey took about three hours, including the two stops.

Next year we will plan to again do both a Summer and Fall Cruise, and will be looking to combine fun roads with interesting destinations. Watch for more information in the Spring/Summer Checkered Flag, and on our website.

Don G., your Governor and Cruise Director


Corvettes of Minnesota members held our second autocross of the season, and our second in the Met Council Autocross Series, on Sunday, September 11. Despite schedule conflicts wirth the SCCA Solo Nationals in Lincoln, Nebraska that drew perhaps 30+ from the Twin Cities area, and a MAP Proving Ground event at BIR, we still had 50 entries at our event. Over a dozen Corvettes were in the field of entries, and we had about 10 COM members and family members included in the entries. Our appreciation also to many members and family members who came out to work at the event. We couldn’t have done it without you!

We had a beautiful day, with temperatures in the 70s, and a clear sky. We were able to offer 7 timed runs on a fast, challenging course that was in the 70-second range for many drivers, and still finish the timed runs by about 3:00 pm.  As we’ve come to expect, Wally had the results compiled and distributed to the entrants by Sunday evening. Photo awards will be distributed at the upcoming CVSCC and MAC events. While the limited number of entries seriously reduced the financial profit to the club, we were still able to meet our expenses and show a small profit, plus providing a solid event for our members and the local autocross community.

Don G

Click on photo to launch a photo gallery of the event!

COM Members Winners at SCVCA Corvette Show, Aug. 20, 2022

For many years the St. Croix Valley Corvette Association has put on a Corvette Show each summer, with the last twenty-five or more years all at Stillwater Motors. This year four COM members (Wally Mahlum, Ron Marks, John Boos, and Don Gettinger) entered their cars in the show, along with roughly 50 of the SCVCA members’ cars (which were not eligible for awards) and roughly 150 other entries, ranging from C-1s to the current C-8s. Format for the awards was a “Top Ten”, where each entrant could cast ballots for up to 10 Corvettes. When the ballots were tallied and awards given out, Wally, Ron, and John took home three of the 10 awards! Nice going, all! Wally had his 1-owner 1969, while Ron and John had their new C-8s and Don had his C-5 Z-06. A Calloway was the only C-4 award winner, and I think no C-5s, C-6s, or C-7s took Top 10 honors.
After the event, the four entrants and four more COM members, family, or friends retired to the nearby Muddy Cow for a lunch together.

COM Gov., Don G.

COM SUMMER CRUISE, July 30th, 2022

Nearly 25 cars, including about 20 Corvettes, went on our Summer Cruise. We started near the Woodbury Applebee’s and went into Wisonsin, with our first stop at the historic Swinging Bridge suspension bridge dating from the 1930s into Glen Park in River Falls. Next was a stop at the Junction Falls water falls at the meeting of the Kinnickinnic and the South Fork of the Kinnickinnic Rivers. Then a quick stop at Belle Vinez winery outside River Falls, and a spirited drive on some country roads. At Prescott, we turned west to return to Minnesota, and visited the falls of the Vermillion River in Hastings at a beautiful park. Then back over the Mississippi River, and some scenic roads including St. Croix Trail and Stagecoach Trail, passing through the villages of Afton, St. Mary’s Point, Lake St. Croix Beach, Lakeland, and Lakeland Shores, where we stopped at the Jordan Meats and Deli to stock up on picnic supplies. We ended at the Welcome Center Rest Stop in West Lakeland, just off Interstate 94 with a picnic for those who wished to stay.

We had the opportunity to meet several of our newer members COM, visit with members of other clubs, and enjoy seeing old friends from long ago who heard about the cruise. In addition to all the Corvettes, from Griff’s C-1 to several brand new C-8s, we were joined by a Firebird, classic Monte Carlo, Saturn Sky, Malibu, Volvo, and others. Next Cruise for our club will be the annual Fall Cruise on Saturday, October 15th, starting and ending in the Stillwater/Oak Park Heights area, and including some Rustic Roads of Western Wisconsin. Watch for a flyer on our website in early September.

Don G., your Governor and Cruise Director

GMCCA Show, Sunday, June 5, 2022 at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds

Corvettes of Minnesota again participated in the GMCCA Annual Show on June 5 of this year. Many COM members were involved in the Saturday set-up putting up the Corvette tent, stakes and banners to limit access points; on Sunday many were staffing the main spectator gate, and doing clean-up activities. Several COM members were involved in each activity, as well as several showing cars. Early estimates were 800-900 cars in the show, and a good number of swap meet vendors and many spectators. Thanks to all who participated in any way, and especially to Jan Hanna who is one of the Directors for the Show, and coordinated all our work schedules. Over a dozen clubs, including three Corvette clubs, are involved in making this show happen each year. About a hundred Corvettes. ranging from early C-1s through new C-8s were in the Show area. The GMCCA Show s one of our club’s primary fund-raiser events each year as well.

COM Gov., Don G.


We enjoyed a cruise this year of just over 100 miles, with three interesting stops along the way. About 15 Corvettes were joined by a ’92 Mini Cooper by Rover, a Chevelle and Malibu, Volvo, BMW, Cadillac, and SRT. COM members were joined by members of Classic Corvettes and Suburban Corvettes, plus several independent drivers and navigators. Corvettes ranged in age from Griff’s C-1 1959 to Ron and Gary’s C-8 2021s.

Our Cruise started in Oak Park Heights, crossed the St. Croix, and soon found us on a winding road near the Bass Lake Cheese Factory. We proceeded through Somerset, East Farmington, Osceola, and Dresser to St. Croix Falls, where we turned onto the River Road, dating from the 1860s. Much of the River Road runs through State Park land, along the St. Croix River. Our first stop was at the Howlin’ Wolf Creek Bar, which originated back in 1831 as a trading post. As part of the annual River Road Ramble, they were hosting a Classic Car Show with over 50 entries. 

Our second stop was a business with over 500 vintage snowmobiles, dozens of cars, trucks, and tractors, and lots of automotive memorabilia. Then it was back through Cushing, Eureka Springs, and St. Croix Falls to return to Wisconsin in Taylors Falls. Our third stop was at the beautiful new Bitter Roots Winery, outside Scandia, near Copas. After more photo opportunities at the winery, we passed through historic Marine on St. Croix and downtown Stillwater, and ended at the Muddy Cow in Oak Park Heights, where many of the Cruise participants enjoyed refreshments and meals.The weather was dry, and toward the end of the Cruise we had some nice sunlight to brighten our view of some trees that were taking on their fall colors.

Your Cruise Director, Don G.

Click on photo to launch a photo gallery of the event!

COM’s Fall Cruise, September 12th, 2020

The annual Fall Cruise for COM and friends was held this year on September 12. Overcast skies and an occasional mist didn’t keep 20 cars including over a dozen Corvettes and a wide variety of other vehicles from NSX to Malibu from attending. We started at the Oak Park Heights McDonald’s to sign waivers and distribute Route Instructions. From Stillwater we traveled back roads past Square Lake and Marine on St. Croix to our first stop at Crabtrees Garden Gate and She Shed in tiny Copas. From there we went into Chisago Country, south through Scandia, and stopped at the Gammelgarden Museum and grounds, celebrating the early Swedish settlers in Minnesota. The next leg of our cruise went past the Washington County Quilt Barn trail, with many old barns decorated with quilt patterns. More back roads took us through “Graffitti Tunnel” and into the village of Marine on St. Croix, where several of the group enjoyed an ice cream cone or other treat. The last leg of the Cruise took us past the logging era Boom Site to Stillwater, where we passed the original State Prison site where the Younger Gang spent many years after the failed Northfield bank robbery (with the Jessie and Frank James gang), down historic Main Street, up Chilkoot Hill, past Minnesota’s oldest surviving Courthouse, and past many lumber baron mansions from the late 1800’s to our end point at The Muddy Cow, where many from our group went inside to socialize and enjoy some pizza and other food and beverages.

Your Cruise Director, Don G.

COM Fall Cruise, October 20th, 2019

About a dozen cars and 24 participants left the Woodbury McDonald’s for our annual COM Fall Cruise. First stop was the Lark Toy Store and Museum in Kellogg, Mn. On the way there, we were treated to an amazing cloud bank hanging over the Mississippi, all the way from Lake City to Kellogg. Lark is recognized as one of the Top 10 toy store in the world by USA Today. A beautiful hand-carved carousel, llamas, miniature golf, a restaurant, and a huge collection of toys on display in their museum, plus toys and puzzles for sale, offered something for everyone.

We crossed the Mississippi at historic Winona, drove an exciting back road (Buffalo County M) to arrive at Elmer’s Auto and Toy Museum on the bluff above Fountain City, Wisconsin. Featured are 100+ muscle cars, including a 78 Silver Anniversary Corvette with 5.4 miles on the odometer, dozen of dirt track and asphalt stock cars, in excess of 700 restored pedal cars, and a building housing 100,000+ toys, plus quarter midget and midget sprint cars, and a very rare (reportedly 1 of just 3 still existing) Polaris Formula car, designed for an SCCA racing class that never happened! To get onto the Elmer’s property, we entered through a salvage yard with hundreds of 60’s-80’s cars. The entire property overlooks the Mississippi River with a spectacular view of the Great River, and miles of Minnesota.

The return trip went through a dozen small towns along Wisconsin 35, and ended with many of the group going to the original Bierstube restaurant in Hastings. It was a sunny, 60 degree day; great for a fun drive along the Mississippi with club members, friends, and auto enthusiasts.
Don Gettinger