Jam with classics, muscle cars at Columbia Center

By: Terry Oparka | Troy Times | Published July 26, 2017

 Ronald Hausmann, of Bloomfield Hills, packs up his 1921 Kissel Sports Tourster as the Troy Traffic Jam winds down in 2016.

Ronald Hausmann, of Bloomfield Hills, packs up his 1921 Kissel Sports Tourster as the Troy Traffic Jam winds down in 2016.

File photo by Sean Work

TROY — Paul Clark doesn’t expect to win any awards for his recently acquired 1983 burgundy Buick Riviera convertible at the Troy Traffic Jam. 

But Clark, a member of the Southeast Michigan Buick Club of America, wouldn’t miss the show. 

Clark, who worked in facilities engineering management for General Motors until he retired, is a lifetime member of the Troy Historical Society and volunteers his time and expertise to fix things at the Troy Historic Village. 

He helped organize the show when it was first held on the grounds of the Troy Historic Village 10 years ago. 

He’s brought his cars to the show in the past, including a 1957 Buick Century. His current car is the third Buick he’s owned. 

So far, the only work he’s done to his current car is install a new battery and tires. The original owner had it for 26 years, and it sat covered and never driven for 18 years. 

“It has 63,000 miles,” Clark said. “There were only 1,750 made. It’s a very rare car.” 

He and his wife, Gerda, took some years off from attending the Troy Traffic Jam to volunteer with Servants on Wheels, doing maintenance and repair work at youth camps. 

Clark said his first car, which he got when he was 17, was a Ford Model A Coupe. “I rebuilt the engine and  transmission with my dad Burdettee’s help,” he said. 

“It’s not just a car show,” he said of the Troy Traffic Jam. “It’s a family thing. The kids will get to go in and out of certain vehicles.” 

He said DJ Bob Steel performs good music and is a great emcee for the show. 

Over 300 vehicles are expected to be on display. 

Loraine Campbell, executive director of the Troy Historic Village, said that for the first time at this event, children will have a chance to vote for their favorite cars at the show in a separate contest. Those who complete ballots before noon will be entered into a raffle to win a prize. 

The voting categories for youths are “I wish my parents would buy this car for me,” “I want to drive this car” and “I would design a car like this.”

Campbell said the Kiwanis Club of Troy expanded the KidZone, which will feature face painting, car crafts and a remote control car obstacle course sponsored by Mahindra. Food and beverages will be available for purchase from Kona Grill and Insalata, as well as at an ice cream cart carrying Good Humor brands.

“We’re very proud to welcome representatives from the Selfridge Air National Guard Base color guard to start the show,” Campbell said. Base personnel will also bring military vehicles, she added. 

Mark Lieberman plans to bring a rare, powder-blue Tucker 43 — named for the model year — to the show. 

Other standouts this year include a 1930 Rolls Royce Phantom once owned by movie star Marlene Dietrich. 

Campbell said the event is made possible by major sponsors Kirco/Columbia Center, Kelly Services, the Suburban Collection, American House and the city of Troy. 

The Big Beaver shuttle service, which usually only operates on weekdays, will run during the Troy Traffic Jam and will make stops at Somerset Collection and various restaurants. 

Individuals interested in displaying their vehicles are welcome to register at TroyTrafficJam.com. The entry fee is $20 per car. All registration fees for the Troy Traffic Jam are tax deductible and support the Troy Historic Village.

The 10th annual Troy Traffic Jam car show will take place 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Aug. 6 at the Columbia Center on Big Beaver Road. There is no charge to attend. 

Sponsorship opportunities are still available. Interested businesses can contact Ronica Bhattacharya at atfund@thvmail.org.