Car show makes all the work worthwhile

By Gregory A. Scibelli - Staff Writer
Windsor - posted Mon., Jul. 18, 2011
Courtny Tokarz shows off her custom paint job on her S-10 truck. Photos by Gregory A. Scibelli
Courtny Tokarz shows off her custom paint job on her S-10 truck. Photos by Gregory A. Scibelli

For Courtny Tokarz of Barkhamsted, showing her car at the Windsor Cruise Night is a dream come true and the result of all her hard work restoring a 1995 Chevrolet S-10 truck.

Tokarz was one of several car enthusiasts who turned out on a great night July 13 for the Cruise Night put on by the Dreams to Reality Car Club and sponsored and hosted by Bart’s Beanery.

The show brings out people like 17-year old Tokarz, who said she has spent a long time working on her vehicle.

“I love getting to show off the work that I love to do,” said Tokarz.  “My father just tells me where the shows are, and I try to go show it everywhere I can.”

She said gender does come into play when it comes to car customization, and she is proud of her work and wants everyone to know it.

“I like bringing this car to these events and showing that I am a 17-year old girl and I did this,” she said.

Tokarz attends the Oliver Wolcott technical high school and says she likes to specialize in doing custom paint jobs like her purple truck.

Others who show their customized vehicles like to show more than just the paint job, but also the restoration work or the features on the interior and exterior.

Dreams to Reality Club member John Crowley likes to show his 10 years worth of work on a simple Lexus that he transformed into a show vehicle by doing a customized paint job and adding a new interior. He also added a turbo charger to his engine. What he looks for at car shows is the reaction from the people.

“I just love watching people come up to the car and see how they look at the car,” said Crowley.  “It’s really rewarding to see those reactions and know that they are doing that because of my work.  I would imagine most everyone here [exhibiting a vehicle] feels that way, too.”

Crowley’s customized car has something for everyone, including entertainment with a Sony Playstation 3 and several television screens built in.

Others go for the classic restoration look, such as Howard Sparge of Winsted and his 1964 Ford Falcon.

“This was my high school car,” said Sparge.  “It was completely rusted over and I spent 10 years restoring it back to the original condition.”

His rewarding experience? Picking up his 92-year-old aunt when he completed the work.  His aunt gave him the car back in high school.

Overall, the Cruise Night was a huge success, and Crowley said the location and a great host are a  big reason for it.

“Windsor is a really nice place to come to, and a lot of nice people come around to look at the cars,” said Crowley.  “Also, there is a lot of activity going on here at Bart’s, and there’s fishing nearby so we get a lot of different people.”

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