Corvette Museum  

Eleven Porsches and one Cadillac were lined up for our drive to Bowling Green, Kentucky, home of the Corvette Assembly Plant and the National Corvette Museum. 

Dale Fatland was set to lead in his '63 Corvette, which seemed to be a fitting gesture, although his car was built in St. Louis. A mechanical problem grounded his Sting Ray at the last minute and he had to rely on his 911. 

Linda Barth's Cadillac XLR was assembled at the Bowling Green Plant and was based on the Corvette Y platform (from the C5 model). Scott Klueh borrowed her car for the trip.

Mark Roethemeier couldn't accompany us on this trip, but made sure we all signed our insurance form. Dale gave us some last minute instructions and we were on our way.

Dale led, followed by Scott, then Tom Southwell's son Shawn in the red Turbo and Tom in his brand new one. 

It was a beautiful morning, perfect for top-down motoring! Dave Hostetter and his son Stirling led the rest of the pack. Behind them: Bob Simpson, Phil and Dawn Green, Bob and TJ Myers, Loren Urfer and his son Austin, Kelly and Michele Dora, and Mike and Vicky Fox. In the photographers' car: Jerry and Susan Jindrich.

After a short drive and a right turn at Reo, Indiana, we made our way to the Ohio River and crossed the "Blue Bridge" into Owensboro, Kentucky.

On the south side of town we hit the Natcher Parkway and picked up our speed a little.

Kentucky is a pretty state, especially on a warm spring morning...

... but we concentrated on our driving.

Is this perfect, or what? Loren Urfer seemed to be enjoying his Boxster.

An undaunted Bob Myers parked his 944 because of a leaking coolant hose, borrowed son TJ's Mazda RX7, and caught up with us halfway to Bowling Green.

Finally, we saw the National Corvette Museum Skydome and found our highway exit.

This was the weekend of the annual NCM Bash. Parking lots were overflowing,...
 
... but we found a place to park.

Enjoying the short hike to the museum, (L to R): Mike Fox, Scott Klueh, Loren Urfer, Vicky Fox, Susan Jindrich, Austin Urfer, Stirling Hostetter, Dale Fatland, Dave Hostetter, Kelly and Michele Dora.

The Corvette Museum is just what you would expect to represent a stylish car with a rich heritage. It contains exhibits, a restaurant, a gift shop, and meeting rooms, and enjoys proximity to the Corvette Assembly Plant. Also, a multi-purpose NCM Motorsports Park is being built across the highway.

Eat first or see the exhibits? (L to R) Shawn Southwell, Tom Southwell, Phil Green (back to camera), TJ Myers (hidden by Phil), Kelly Dora, and Mike Fox.

The Museum exhibits covered many topics beginning with the development of the first Corvette. 

Cars representing the evolution of the modern Corvette are on display.

Some exhibits are nostalgic,...

... tapping into our fascination with "America's Sports Car" and associated lore such as "the Mother Road". 

Some depict Corvette's great racing heritage.



There were concept cars,...

... cutaway examples of engines and transmissions,...

... even a representation of the assembly line.

And then there was the hole that Vicky Fox, and Phil and Dawn Green (center) peered into along with two other observers. On February 12, a cave that no one was aware of beneath the Skydome collapsed, dropping concrete flooring and eight rare and historically significant cars about 30 feet. For more information, see the National Corvette Museum Media Alert. Watch videos from security cameras and other sources about the incident and subsequent car recoveries.

The damage ranged from "not too bad" for the black '62 model, to the "just awful!" for most of the rest.

Ouch!

The Hostetters and Urfers survey the damage.

This is/was a 2001 Mallett Hammer Z06 with 700 HP and 16,000 miles on the odometer. Just beyond, the irreplaceable 1.5 Millionth and 1 Millionth Corvettes.

But life goes on. The museum may fill and cover the hole or preserve it as another fascinating exhibit. In the meantime, welcome to the exciting new Corvette!

After a bite to eat, it was time to mosey back to Evansville. Nice drive!


© 2014 Southern Indiana Region of the Porsche Club of America