The Gold Coast British Sports Car Club was invited to join the Miata Club of South Florida for brunch at the historic Seminole Inn in Indiantown, Fla., on Sunday, August 21st. Most participants drove to West Palm Beach for an early meet-up and to caravan over to the Seminole Inn.
Indiantown was settled by the Seminoles in the early 19th century, a land ideal for hunting and camping. Other settlers followed in the 1890s, but it was the arrival of Baltimore banker S. Davies Warfield, who planned to make the town the southern headquarters of his Seaboard Airline Railroad, that put Indiantown on the map. Warfield constructed houses, built a school, and built the Seminole Inn. His niece, Wallis Warfield — later to become the Duchess of Windsor — was there for the Inn’s gala opening and visited the Inn several times.
We arrived at the Inn for ten o’clock brunch. The Seminole Inn is still reminiscent of the “Old South” with its grand double French doors into the lobby, original solid brass wall fixtures and bronze chandeliers, open fireplace and hardwood floors. We were seated in a separate dining room, where the elegance of dining in the past was evident in the 12-ft. cypress ceilings, massively thick walls, beautiful windows and grand furnishings.
We all enjoyed a traditional Sunday brunch featuring fresh food locally sourced, most of which is grown on their own farm. Of course, everything was delicious, with a great selection of breakfast items as well as lunch and dessert too.
The GCBSCC was represented by 12 members and friends and we joined about two dozen Miata Club members. We all made new friends very quickly because we shared the same passion, automobiles! Our British rides included a Daimler, a Jaguar, a Lotus and a Rolls-Royce.
Many of the Miata Club members chose to continue the afternoon with a cruise down the Martin Grade Scenic Highway, and several of our club members joined in.
It was a short drive from the Seminole Inn to County Road 714, the Martin Grade Scenic Highway, a beautiful road lined with palms, maples and oak trees that form a lush canopy over much of the 12-mile corridor. The Grade began as a logging trail, was used for cattle drives, then was bordered by citrus groves and cattle ranchers. Now it’s home to farmers, ranchers and those who enjoy rural life.
It was truly a perfect ending to a great day. We enjoyed a little bit of history, a lot of wonderful food, making new friends and driving great cars. Thank you to John Morris, a member of both clubs, for inviting us!
Upcoming events of the GCBSCC include our Fall Club Picnic on Sunday, November 20th, at C. B. Smith Park in Pembroke Pines, Fla. As is our tradition, the club will supply the barbecue foods, condiments and soft drinks. Participants are asked to bring an appetizer, side dish or dessert to share. Watch for more information on our website and in your e-mails.
Be sure to mark your calendars for our annual All-British Car Show, to be held on Sunday, February 19, 2023, at Tradewinds Park in Coconut Creek, Fla. We are looking for sponsors and advertisers. If you are interested or know someone who may be, please let us know. Our featured marques will be Austin-Healey and Aston Martin.
We will also be holding our annual election of officers for next year. All Board positions are available, including President, Vice Presidents of Broward County, Palm Beach County, and Miami-Dade County, Treasurer, Secretary, Membership Chairman, Regalia Chairman, Events Coordinator and Editor. Watch for more information.
We invite members and friends to visit our website, www.goldcoastbritcar.com, for news and upcoming events and information about the club. You can also visit our Facebook page. Inquiries can be directed to our e-mail, email@example.com.
We hope to see you soon.
The Gold Coast British Sports Car Club is sad to announce the passing of one of our founding members. Brian Jenkins passed away peacefully on July 30, 2022.
On Friday evening, August 5th, the Jenkins family hosted a gathering to celebrate Brian’s life. Two of Brian’s brothers, Gary and Bill, nephew Chris, and niece Morgan attended. Most of Brian’s family lives in the Connecticut and New York area, so his mom, Katherine, and other siblings and family joined in on livestream. The Rev. David Massey, also a club member, offered his church, the Plantation Presbyterian Church, and conducted a non-denominational service. We thank him for his words of inspiration.
Club members and friends were invited to attend, and many brought their British rides. Brian’s brother Bill and several club members addressed the group with stories about Brian’s amazing life. We thank the Jenkins family for their hospitality during this difficult time, as we had the opportunity to pay our respects and share stories. Many of our members remember Brian as a trusted and skilled British car mechanic, as he worked on many of our British cars. However, we learned so much more.
Brian was born in Granby, Conn., but as an adult he relocated to southeastern Florida, where he made his home. Brian never forgot his roots and he loved his family very much and they loved him. He visited them as often as he could and always talked about the happy times he would experience when they were together. He always told us about the wonderful childhood he had and the love they shared. He especially liked to recount how he and his siblings spent their summers on family car trips.
Both of Brian’s parents were teachers. His dad taught woodworking and was great at carpentry. He renovated an old school bus into a family camper and Brian, his parents, and all of his siblings embarked on a cross-country camping trip. That was among many other trips that they all enjoyed doing together.
Brian’s brother Bill told us how Brian loved working with his hands. At the age of four, he built a model house and at the age of 14 he built a pool table for his family. His brother Bill recounted how Brian and his siblings used to build elaborate forts and treehouses in their backyard.
Brian’s love of carpentry led him to the home construction business, where he spent 20 years. He also did a lot of beautiful carpentry work in his own home.
As much as he loved building, his other passion was sports cars, notably Lotus.
Brian’s love of cars started when he was a senior in high school. His older brother’s best friend had just bought a Porsche, and Brian loved it. Circumstances, however, led him to the Lotus brand and the purchase of a 1967 Lotus Europa. Well, needless to say, his passion turned to Lotus — and he spent many hours restoring his dream car with a new candy apple red paint job and several repairs.
Another great memory of Brian was when he and a friend went cross-country with his Lotus, which, by the way, Brian owned until he passed, over 40 years later! Brian’s passion for restoring vintage Lotus cars led him through the years to acquire another 1967 Lotus Europa and a 1967 Lotus Super 7, both of which he restored beautifully.
It was only natural that Brian would start his business, All Loti Restoration, a business that included small repairs to frame-off restoration, custom modifications, custom paint and much more, for not only Lotus but all British cars. He built his repair/restoration business due to his reputation for honesty, fairness, great work and his passion for cars. His customers became his friends.
Some of our members may recall the days when The Tower Shops in Plantation, Fla., would hold a weekly Friday night car show that attracted many muscle cars. It was on one of these evenings that Brian met other British car enthusiasts, Melanie Hale and Bob Murphy. They owned an MGA and had started the Unofficial British Sports Car Club of Broward County.
Bob, Melanie and Brian became instant friends. Bob recalls how he asked Brian to help him with repairs to his MGA, and it wasn’t long after that Brian’s skill as a mechanic had attracted many customers. Bob no longer had his private MGA mechanic. Now he had to make appointments to have Brian work on his cars!
In the meantime, their club became affiliated with The Gold Coast Triumph Club, with members enjoying picnics, car driving outings and other events. However, by the mid-1990s, it became apparent that the club needed to broaden its image to reflect the diversity of its membership. The club got a new name, the Gold Coast British Sports Car Club, with a new logo that we still use. Brian, Melanie and Bob became founding members of the club that we know today.
Membership grew as more British brands joined. In time, Brian took on the role of Car Show Chairman for the GCBSCC’s Annual All-British Car Show. He worked diligently and passionately in this position for ten years, and our annual car shows became hugely successful. They attracted many members and non-members, many of which later joined our club. What started as a small gathering with Brian and Melanie Hale at the helm later necessitated countless other volunteers, and thus began a great tradition that continues today.
On a personal note, my husband David and I met Brian over 15 years ago, after we bought our 1997 Lotus Esprit V8. Of course, Brian convinced us to join the club, and we became great friends. Brian and David worked on many projects together, we attended many club functions, and due to a shared love of Lotus, at Brian’s request we also joined the national Lotus Ltd. Car Club.
Brian co-chaired a LOG (Lotus Owners Gathering) in 2012 in Orlando, which is where we attended our first LOG. We had such a good time that we attended other LOGs with Brian in different parts of the country, but our most memorable trip together had to be the British Invasion in Stowe, Vt., with over 600 British cars, a beautiful venue, and a great side trip to the Green Mountain Range!
We always enjoyed Brian’s good sense of humor, our shared love of British cars and his friendship. In addition to his family, many friends, car club members and business associates, we will greatly miss Brian.
The GCBSCC invites members and friends to visit our website, www.goldcoastbritcar.com, for news of upcoming events and information about the club. You can also visit our Facebook page. Inquiries can be directed to our e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Be sure to mark your calendars for Sunday, November 20th, when we will be having our Club Picnic at C.B. Smith Park in Pembroke Pines, Fla. Check our website for more details!
We hope to see you soon. Happy motoring!
Members of the Gold Coast British Sports Car Club have been participating in various car events in our area.
Cars & Cigars
On Father’s Day, Sunday, June 19th, the Barnacle Historic State Park in Coconut Grove, Fla., held their Annual Cars & Cigars Car Show.
The five-acre Park, left in its natural state, sits on Biscayne Bay, with the main attraction being the Barnacle Historic House. It was built in 1891 by Ralph Middleton Monroe and is the oldest house standing in its original location in Miami Dade County. The house is furnished with many original heirlooms that were donated by the Monroe family, and tours are available. Monroe was a boat designer and part of the Park includes his marina, with a replica of his 28-foot sharpie, Egret, moored offshore.Monroe family heirs sold the Barnacle property to the State of Florida to be preserved as a museum.
By the Barnacle Park staff accounts, the Annual Cars & Cigars Car Show had a bit fewer cars participating than in previous years — however, the British car presence was strong. In fact, a beautiful classic Jaguar XKE was the 1st-place winner for the People’s Choice Award. We also saw a 1937 Alvis Speed 25 in original condition, powered by a 104hp six-cylinder engine that could achieve a speed of 50mph in 11 sec. and 60mph in 15 sec. This classic 1937 Alvis is the only known survivor!
The GCBSCC was represented by Bob Godin, with his daughter Sheila and son-in-law Craig, and his 2008 Jaguar XJ8L David and Fran Zeitz and their 2017 Lotus Evora 400 and several club members who visited without their British cars. Thank you to Ed Morat, Vice President of Miami Dade, for organizing this event for club members. It was a great day with live music, good food, a beautiful location, and classic cars!
The Elliott Museum
Then, a week later, on Saturday, June 25th, the GCBSCC was invited to join the Southeast Florida Miata Club for a private tour of the Elliott Museum in Jupiter, Fla.
We began at Dunkin’ Donuts in Boynton Beach for a quick breakfast and a caravan ride to the Elliott Museum. The GCBSCC was represented by Paul Picus and his wife Sue. Paul drove his 2008 Rolls-Royce Phantom Limited Edition Bespoke in Dark Tungsten, just one of 24 produced. Also attending were Bob Godin and his 2008 Jaguar XJ8L, and David and Fran Zeitz and their 2017 Lotus Evora 400.
We all enjoyed our tour of the Museum with our knowledgeable docent. Sterling Elliott was a successful inventor, publisher, social activist and businessman. He invented items that would improve everyday life, but he was best known for his new steering invention that was used in his 1889 Elliott Hickory Quadricycle, which was on display. That invention was the non-turning front axle and self-equalizing brake system, and it subsequently was used in every pioneer American automobile.
Harmon Elliott founded the Museum as a tribute to his father, donating Sterling’s inventions and family heirlooms. On display was a 1936 Austin “Nippy” Roadster, a limited production sports roadster made in England by the Austin Motor Company. Harmon purchased this Austin new and actually placed it on his 63’ motor yacht and used it as a shore car!
The collection of other vintage cars in the Museum was impressive. Included was a replica of the 1886 Benz Patent-Motorwagen, which is credited as being the first successful automobile powered by an internal combustion engine. The Museum also houses a unique three-level car racking system that is the only one of its kind in an American museum.
In addition to the auto collections, the Elliott Museum houses a baseball gallery with hundreds of signed baseball cards and balls, a miniature circus display, a unique River Cruiser made from a Grumman Mohawk Drop Tank, and special exhibits.
Our day concluded with a casual lunch in an outdoor café beside the Museum, where we all had the opportunity to discuss our visit as well as our own special cars! Thank you to John Morris for the invite!
Collector Car Appreciation Day
Since 2010, Congress has passed resolutions to celebrate the integral role collector cars play in fostering an appreciation of the automobile’s unique place in our history, designating the second Friday in July as Collector Car Appreciation Day. The Fort Lauderdale AACA (Antique Automobile Club of America) recognized this special day by sponsoring a cruise-in on Saturday, July 9th.
The cruise-in was held in the City of Pompano Beach, where they closed a couple of city streets for the event, which was free and open to all car clubs. A 50/50 raffle was held and proceeds were donated to the AACA National Library. Food trucks were available, DJ Scott the Musicman played the oldies, and there were lots of raffle prizes given out.
Several members of the GCBSCC attended, and we were among many other classic car collectors. It was a great day to mingle with like-minded enthusiasts!
More club news
The GCBSCC invites members and friends to visit our website, www.goldcoastbritcar.com, for news, upcoming events and information about the club. You can also visit our Facebook page. Inquiries can be directed to our e-mail, email@example.com. We hope to see you soon. Happy motoring!