Sundowners Car Club celebrating its 25th anniversary with DJJD car showcase
Pat and Larry Trusty stand beside their one thousand nine hundred forty nine Lincoln. The Lincoln was a beloved car for the duo. (Submitted photo)
What commenced with an ad in the Northfield News and as a passion for cars developed into the Sundowners Car Club.
The Sundowners Car Club will feast its 25th anniversary this year and once again showcase hundreds of cars during the Defeat of Jesse James Days Saturday at Riverside Park.
The club, began by Larry and Pat Trusty, has become a mainstay in the community and an outlet for car enthusiasts. Members don’t need to have a car, just a passion for autos.
The annual Defeat of Jesse James Car Showcase draws inbetween 250-350 cars each year. It drew more than one hundred ninety cars in the very first year it was held.
“That’s when you’re going to draw cars,” Pat said. “It’s a real popular demonstrate.”
Larry passed away in April and going to car shows was an activity he and Pat did together via the years.
As the odometer turned on the cars so did the function of the club.
“It got to be more of a social thing,” Pat said. “At a lot of the car shows they’ll have things for the women. It was a social thing.”
Pat and Larry wielded numerous classic cars and made a one thousand nine hundred forty six Ford their very first purchase. From there they bought a one thousand nine hundred forty nine Lincoln that Larry dreamed to use in the club’s logo. Since he also came up with the name of the club, the other members determined to exclude the car from the logo.
“I thought my hubby would sell the very first car when we bought the 2nd one,” Pat said. “That’s not how car guys work.”
The Trustys also wielded a one thousand nine hundred seventy two Chevrolet Malibu convertible and Pat still possesses a Dodge Daytona Shelby.
The one thousand nine hundred forty nine Lincoln was a beloved for the duo and after they sold it a man from Norway got in contact with them through their Minnesota Street Rod Association decal. He bought the car from a man in Florida, who purchased the car from the Trustys.
There are usually around twenty different classes and prizes awarded to the top three in each class. Sundowner members aren’t able to be part of the Defeat of Jesse James Car Showcase.
When the Sundowners aren’t holding car shows they’re out cruising together during the summer months. Each Friday night members get together for a drive and meet for supper at a local restaurant. Cruises are open to anyone who wants to join.
The group has been proactive in contributing to local fundraisers for military personnel, the food shelf, as well as the Faribault and Northfield Veteran’s Memorials.
Club members participate in parades and also have provided transportation for weddings in the past.
There are perks to membership as well. Members of the Sundowners receive discounts at local auto parts stores when they present their membership card. Family memberships cost $20 for the very first year and renewal memberships are $15 a year.
Members aren’t entirely from Northfield either. When the Trustys began the club they had previously been part of an Apple Valley car club. Now members come from Dennison, Dundas, Faribault, Farmington, Lonsdale, Montgomery and Albert Lea.
When Pat and Larry placed the ad in the newspaper they drew forty two families to join the club in the very first year. Membership reached as many as one hundred families but now stands around 60.
“We had no idea if this would work or not,” Pat said.
After twenty five years it’s safe to say it’s been a success.