Event Coverage

Cavalcade Of Corvettes

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  • As the host with the most, Mike Yager made himself readily available to Funfest visitors, signed copies of his new book, Mike Yager's Corvette Bible. - 1
  • Looks like a death trap to us—wait a second, it is a death trap! This caricature of a Corvette appeared in Death Race 2000 with a helmeted David Carradine behind the wheel. A pre-Rocky Sylvester Stallone also had a starring role in this cult sci-fi classic. Constructed by George “Batmobile” Barris (what star car hasn’t he done?), the cobbled-up conveyance consists of a Corvette body mounted on a Volkswagen chassis that’s powered by a Corvair engine. - 2
  • The 1960 CERV 1 (Chevrolet Engineering Research Vehicle), was engineered by Zora Arkus-Duntov and styled by Larry Shinoda. Powered by a specially cast aluminum 377 engine, it propelled the CERV 1 to speeds of 240 mph on the test track, a decade before racecars achieved that speed at Indy. - 3
  • This famous 1969 L-88 racing “Lightweight,” one of four produced, was the first to be equipped with the open-chamber cylinder heads and a “distance kit” for competition. It achieved an impressive string of victories with Herb Caplan at the wheel. Later on, Elliott Forbes-Robinson drove it to win the last A-Production race at Road Atlanta in 1978. - 4
  • GM’s Tom Hill from the Bowling Green Assembly Plant covered some of the finer details of the latest Corvette models. - 5
  • Celebrity Choice Winners lined up for an award ceremony. - 6
  • Some winners combined past and present Corvette features into a single vehicle. - 7
  • While not to everybody’s taste, there’s no denying the dramatic impact of the ’73 Stingray stylized by actor Mark Hamill in the movie Corvette Summer. (Hey, if it was good enough to entice Annie Potts’ character into the passenger seat, what’s not to like?) This original movie prop, from Mike Yager’s Corvette collection, still has the camera mounts and right-hand drive conversion. Here Yager (right) chats with George Barris, the car’s creator. - 8
  • Dubbed PHAT 427, this customized ’67 Stingray came all the way from Reno, Nevada to attend its first Funfest. - 9
  • Want a performance exhaust? You could get a Corsa unit installed right on site during Funfest. - 10
  • Talk about good taste—or tasting good—try a cold Bud on a hot day of Corvettes. - 11
  • At Funfest, you’ll see Corvettes until the cows come home! - 12
  • A calvacade of Corvettes cruised through Mid-America during the three-day event. - 13
  • What helps Yager’s Ferrari fit in at Funfest is the fact that it displays some Corvette contours. - 14
  • Having trouble convincing your significant other to attend Funfest? Just tell her about the spa and salon treatments that are part of the event. - 15
  • If you couldn’t find it at the product mall, then you probably don’t need it for your Corvette. - 16
  • For relaxing way to check out the 15,000 Vettes on display, a double-decker bus toured the show grounds throughout the event. - 17
  • On-site customizing was available all weekend. - 18
  • Baer Brakes upgraded binders for Corvette owners. - 19
  • This ’67 ZL1, said to be Sam Malone’s car on the TV series Cheers, boasted 600 horses and a suspension from an ’87 Vette. - 20
  • American Car Craft had custom parts for everything, from nose to tail. - 21
  • Grand Sport Corvettes lined up in grand formation. - 22
  • Art for art’s sake was offered. - 23
  • A Torch Red/Silver Metallic ’98 with tribal flames really beat the drums. - 24
  • Callaway’s customized coupe captured the crowd’s curiosity. - 25
  • In a specially designated area just for customs, owners showed off a wide variety of Vettes. - 26
  • Print

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by Steve Temple  More from Author

The Happiest Place on Earth for Vette Fans

While Corvette enthusiasts each have their favorite model and year, what if you could go to one event and see them all in one spot? Not only that, but a place to hang out and bench-race with all your Vette buddies? It’d have to be an occasion that shows off everything that makes us crave Corvettes: power, performance, panache, and passion. Did we leave something out? Well, if we did, you’d likely find it a Funfest, and annual three-day event held at Mid America Motorworks’s sprawling campus in Effingham, Illinois, just a short drive east of St. Louis, Missouri.

Hosted by Mike Yager, Mid America’s founder and self-proclaimed “chief cheerleader”, this event draws some 15,000 Corvettes from all over the country, with more than 45,000 spectators, making it one of the largest such gatherings in the country. What’s the attraction? Well, for one thing, it’s free. So there’s no pressure to buy anything—just kick back and enjoy.

“What is truly exciting is we have seen increased attendance at Funfest each of the past 14 years,” Yager notes. “ Funfest is a great way to celebrate our customers and the camaraderie shared by Corvette enthusiasts.” 

One way Yager celebrated was with a free concert, put on by Three Dog Night on the evening of Sept. 22. Other highlights of the weekend included technical seminars hosted by industry experts and the debut of, Mike Yager's Corvette Bible.

In honor of the weekend’s special guest, renowned George Barris, the King of Kustoms, the car from Corvette Summer was the featured Corvette of the event. Additionally, it was featured on commemorative event posters and T-shirts given free to each registrant who brought a Corvette to the show.

Throughout the weekend, Corvettes from every model year could be seen.  In “Club Field,” more than 74 Corvette clubs from around the country attended Funfest. Special display parking featured custom Corvettes as well.

In addition, enthusiasts were able to buy, sell, and modify Corvettes at Funfest. Dozens of companies displayed and demonstrated Corvette-related aftermarket products. At the “Install Alley,” more than 200 customers had new exhaust systems bolted on by Corsa, B&B, and Mid America Motorworks.  Many other Corvette owners added high-performance brake systems from Baer Brakes, SLP air intakes, and American Car Craft dress-up items to their vehicles. 

Callaway Corvette, Bloomington Gold, Bondurant Racing, and Goodyear also set up special displays for Corvette fans. General Motors impressed enthusiasts with an extensive display of 2008 Corvettes. GM Engineers were also available to give escorted rides to both kids and those young-at-heart attending Funfest.

Like everybody else in attendance, we can hardly wait until next year. So don’t miss Corvette Funfest 2008 on September 19-21. It will be Mid America’s 15th Corvette Funfest and the special theme is the 20th Anniversary of the Corvette Challenge Series.



Mid America Motorworks

17082 N Us Highway 45

Effingham, IL 62401



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