Northwest People & Places - September 2018
Commercial Tire, founded in Boise, is celebrating its 50th anniversary as a family-owned business. Founder and CEO Bob Schwenkfelder started the business in 1968 and his son, Trent, heads the company operation today. From one location in Boise, the company has grown to 45 stores in Idaho, Oregon, Utah, and Washington.
Nevada Tire Holdings (NTH) has acquired the assets of the four Miracle Tire & Auto Care outlets in the Boise area. NTH operates more than a dozen Superior Tire & Rubber Co. stores in the greater Las Vegas region, and the Boise outlets will now function under the Superior Tire name. The centers sell mainly Goodyear tires, but also market more than 25 brands ranging from Bridgestone to Hankook, Pirelli to Uniroyal.
The 11th annual Bigfork Rumble in the Bay car event takes place Sept. 1-2, in downtown Bigfork. More than 300 cars and trucks, including classics, muscle cars, and racers, are displayed on the main street in Bigfork. Vehicles from throughout the Pacific Northwest and beyond participate in poker runs and show n’ shines, plus there are vendor booths, food, and entertainment. All proceeds benefit the VFW Post 4052 and programs it provides to veterans. For details, visit www.bigforkrumble.com.
The 16th annual Columbia River Classic, one of the premier vintage racing events in the country, is set for Sept. 8-9, at Portland International Raceway (PIR). Presented by the non-profit and Seattle-based Society of Vintage Racing Enthusiasts (SOVREN), this will be the second year for the CrossFlow Cup, a five-event West Coast series for Formula Fords. And the event will be shared with the All-British Field Meet, as well as a Sprint & Midget Challenge that features Austin-Healey Sprites and MG Midgets. For complete details on this event, and other SOVREN events in the Northwest, visit www.sovrenracing.org.
The Northwest Tire Dealers Association (NWTDA) will present a TIA Certified Commercial Tire Service (CTS) training class in Portland in September. The technician training is the highest level for participation in the CTS program and is designed for experienced employees. For dates and locations of the CTS class, call NWTDA at 509-948-2433.
The High Desert Swap Meet and the 35th annual High Plains Classic Car Show in Redmond is Sept. 8. The event is central Oregon’s largest car event with 600 vendor booths plus a car show featuring antique cars and trucks, muscle cars, roadsters, hot rods, and more. For details, visit www.coocc.org.
The Northwest Automotive Trades Association (NATA) is promoting Fall Car Care Month and encouraging members to stage events during October. For information contact Cathi Webb at NATA, 503-253-988, or visit www.carcare.org for event resources.
ASA Northwest will be presenting Lights-on events in the region on Oct. 6, in conjunction with Fall Car Care Month (nationwide Be Car Care Aware campaign). As of press time, events are planned in the Tacoma and Bellingham areas. The Sno-King Unit of ASA Northwest offered a special Lights-on program during a car show event at South Seattle College in late August. ASA shop representatives, along with students from college automotive technology programs, provide free inspection and replacement of exterior vehicle lighting. For details on Lights-on events in Washington or Oregon, call 253-473-6970. To plan a car care event, or list your scheduled event free online, visit www.carcare.org.
The SOVREN Fall Finale for racers who want to score seasonal division championship points will be Sept. 22-23, at Pacific Raceways in Kent. A variety of vintage race cars from across the country will compete in this weekend event that draws large crowds to view season ending racing. For details, visit www.sovrenracing.org.
Several automotive industry professionals participated in the Washington Association of Career & Technical Education (WACTE) annual conference in Spokane in early August. Held at the historic Davenport Hotel, the event featured a workshop by Walt Commans of ASE regarding advisory councils at high school and college automotive technology training programs. In addition to program instructors and administrators, Spokane area shop owners attended the session to help answer questions from educators about advisory councils and the partnership between education and industry. Commans, the Western States field rep for ASE and the ASE Education Foundation, also presented an ASE certification testing class at the conference.
Northwest Air Conditioning, a fixture in the Seattle area for 51 years, will close Sept. 15. Founded by Robert and Mary Fulford at the south end of Sea-Tac International Airport in 1967, the company’s second generation was added in March 1989 when daughter Nancy Fulford joined the team. Robert Fulford died in 2006 and the mother/daughter team has continued to run the well-known A/C specialist that over the years sold hundreds of Robinair service machines, parts, accessories, and related A/C service products to a wide variety of service and parts customers in the Northwest, Alaska, and across the country. A Robinair authorized repair facility for decades, the family-owned specialist serviced and repaired thousands of recovery, recycling, and recharging machines and for fleets, repair shops, and A/C specialists across the Northwest region. Known for its high-quality A/C classes, Northwest Air presented dozens of air related training sessions at its headquarters over the years with the nation’s top A/C trainers, as well as “on the road” classes in Washington and Oregon.
Maximilian Motorsports in Chehalis celebrates its 25th anniversary this year. Owned by Maximilian MacDonald, the shop offers complete auto service and repair for all European vehicles, race car preparation, complete restyling and restoration services, plus fabrication, upholstery, and collision services, as well as appraisal services. MacDonald is a longtime racer and rallyist and as of press time he was preparing three vehicles (two VWs and a BMW) for the nine-day Alcan 5000 Rally that runs this year from Kirkland, Wash., to Fairbanks, Alaska.
Benjamin Pedersen, 19, of Seattle and Copenhagen, Denmark, made his debut at the F3 Americas Championship. Held Aug. 10-11, at the Mid-Ohio Sort Car Course, Pedersen was in the No. 24 DirtFish Ligier JS F3 sponsored by Global Racing Group. “It’s very exciting to get going in the F3 Americas Championship,” Pedersen said. “I look forward to carrying over many of the things I’ve learned in the F4 and developing the new F3 car with the help of Global Racing Group.” In his professional racing career, Pedersen, Danish-American, has captured five wins, including the Formula 1 United States Grand Prix with F4, five top three finishes, and 17 top ten placements in 2017 FIA F4 points.
America’s Automotive Trust (AAT) in Tacoma announced that Adam Langsbard has resigned his post as president and CEO for family reasons and returned to Los Angeles. AAT includes America’s Car Museum, the RPM Foundation, the Car Club, and the Concurs Club. “Adam came to us with a successful and diverse track record of elevating many different types of enterprises,” said AAT Chairman Corry McFarland. “During his brief time at AAT he provided leadership and expertise that will stay with us long after he departs.” Paul Miller, AAT senior vice president, will assume leadership duties while AAT searches for a new CEO. David Madeira, involved with AAT since its inception, remains vice chairman of the trust and will continue to work on national and strategic initiatives.
A memorial service for William Howard Lewis, 69, was held July 24, in Snohomish. A native of nearby Arlington, he graduated from Snohomish High School and worked for two automotive businesses prior to opening L&B Auto Repair in Snohomish in 1981 along with wife, Mary. The pair also opened Angel Transport & Towing in 2000. Mary Lewis died in 2012 after a battle with cancer. Long active in ASA Washington (now ASA Northwest) affairs, Lewis served on the Snohomish County Unit board, as well as the state board of directors, and was chairman of the trade association for two years. He went on to serve on the ASA national board and was elected chairman of that group in 2000 and presided over the 2001 ASA national convention in Maui. He was named the 1992 Outstanding Member of the Year by ASA Washington, and received other awards from ASA. In 2007, Lewis became the chaplain for Snohomish Fire District 4 and was active in the Billy Graham Ministries Rapid Response Team providing comfort to families across the country that endured natural disasters. He also served on the boards of Kiwanis Club of Snohomish, Snohomish Senior Center, CrossView Church, Friday Harbor Sailing Club, and Faith Assembly Church. Lewis retired from L&B in 2015 and spent much of his time with wife, Linda, sailing the San Juan Islands in Washington and adjacent Gulf Islands in British Columbia.