Come help the New Fairfield Lions celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Car Show this Sunday, October 9th at Squantz Pond, Route 39, New Fairfield from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. for guests and 8 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. for those entering their cars, trucks, motorcycles. Trophies are awarded to 1st and 2nd prize in each class of vehicles.
Crazy things happen at an event that no one has any control over. Would you believe that on the eve of the first New Fairfield Lions Club Car Show a quarter of a century ago, a “flying saucer” (UFO) appeared hovering over the high school parking lot while the Lions were setting up for the next day’s festivities?
Lion Frank Shea laughs as he retells the story as if it happened yesterday. “Tell me I’m not seeing that,” said a Lion standing nearby referring to the noiseless, large round circle with bright lights hanging in the air seemingly to observe the activities. Lion Frank says there were about 15 other people, but “after all this time some of the witnesses moved away or died” so there is nobody left in the New Fairfield area to add credence to the story. The police at that time thought it might be a low flying plane coming from the Danbury airport with its wing lights on.
The late Dom DiSarro left his legacy to the Club when he organized, chaired, and coordinated the first car show in 1991. His son, Doug DiSarro said, “He had a 1959 Cadillac that he used to enter in local area shows.” Dom was a long-standing member of the New Fairfield Lions and one of its presidents, 1988-89, until he and his wife moved to Naples, Florida.
At that time his son, Doug, says, “I took over running the car show in 1995.” He also was a past president of the New Fairfield Lions Club from 2002 to 2003.
Doug says that it was first held at the New Fairfield High School, “but we lost the parking lot when the district approved the construction of the Middle School addition. The town let us use Memorial Field (1993). It rained all night. The cars got stuck, so we used Grand Union’s (Stop and Shop) parking lot. There were only about 50 cars entered at the car show. ” (The Club estimates about 300 cars will attend the show this year).
The Governor at that time, Gov. Jodi Rell, approved the use of Squantz Pond after Deputy Commissioner, Norma Gyle, Dept. of Public Health urged Gov. Rell to let the Club use Squantz Pond for several years at a cost of $50 for a permit.
The fees for the State of Connecticut to use the property at this time is nearly 60 times that amount for a non-profit organization that distributes its profits back to the town to support its residents including college scholarships amounting to $8,000 for qualifying high school students; Boy Scouts; Girl Scouts; food pantry; Breakfast with Santa; senior citizens’ luncheon and picnic and a myriad of other donations that other groups solicit from the Club.
Let’s hope the weather cooperates on Saturday so those attending can enjoy the day and a walk through history seeing the restoration of cars from the early 1920s. Speaking of seeing, you never know when you might observe a UFO hovering over beautiful Squantz Pond checking out the event.
Questions? Contact Mark Lamanna at firstname.lastname@example.org. Car show registration is $20. Admission is $5 spectators, Seniors over 60 pay only $2. Children under 12 are free.
By Martha DePhillips