Tuesday, May 27, 2014
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Austin-Healeys take center stage at car show
David Davis Mansion hosts 23rd British Car Festival on June 1

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[May 27, 2014]  BLOOMINGTON – Austin-Healey cars, including one being used to fight cancer, get the spotlight at the 23rd annual Champagne British Car Festival being held June 1 at the David Davis Mansion State Historic Site in Bloomington. 

The festival runs from 10 a.m. until the awards ceremony at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 1. The day will conclude with awards for best of show and best in individual classes. Donations of $5 for adults and $2 for children, or $10 for an entire family, are requested to benefit the David Davis Foundation. 

More than 130 British cars are expected at this popular annual event organized by the Flat Land British Car Club. The featured “marque” or nameplate is Austin-Healey, which produced its jaunty sports cars from 1952 until 1972. 

A 1953 Austin-Healey named Grace will make a special appearance at the car show. Owner John Nikas drives Grace around the country for the Drive Away Cancer program. Sick children get to take rides in Grace, and others can sign the car to honor someone they love who has battled cancer.  

The day of the show is also National Cancer Survivors Day. An information booth will be provided by the Community Cancer Center. 

“We hope that it will be a very special day here at the David Davis Mansion,” said Dave Hauman, chairman of the car show.  

In addition to class awards recognizing various manufacturers and models, the mayors of Bloomington and Normal will each present awards. And this year, for the first time, a Premiere Class award will be given for the car selected as the best among the class winners. 

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The festival will also include a vintage race car in which children will be allowed to sit, have their pictures taken and talk with the owner, a former vintage car amateur racer. A junior judging contest will be conducted with representatives from the Boys and Girls Club as judges.  

A luncheon pavilion will be staffed by members of Troop 20 of the Boy Scouts, and Bob’s Ice Cream from Eureka will be there to satisfy everyone’s sweet tooth.  

For more information, visit www.cbcf-bloomington.com. Details about Grace are available at www.DriveAwayCancerNow.org.


The David Davis Mansion State Historic Site, administered by the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, was built in 1872 for Supreme Court Justice David Davis and his wife, Sarah. The site is open Wednesday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. for public tours. To learn more, visit http://DavidDavisMansion.org.

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