The members of the Cadillac Club of Kansas City have such a passion for the iconic luxury vehicle that they welcome new members who do not own one.
“You just have to appreciate the Cadillac,” said club member Tom Keegan.
Cadillac Club of Kansas City members definitely appreciated what Cable-Dahmer Buick GMC Cadillac did for them on May 9 at the dealership, 3107 Noland Road in Independence.
Cable-Dahmer Buick GMC Cadillac cleared out part of its lot for the Cadillac Club of Kansas City to hold its first car show at the dealership.
Cadillac owners from Raymore to Overland Park to Kansas City brought their vintage cars to Cable-Dahmer. A total of 34 Cadillacs were on the lot and in the showroom.
“This is just tremendous,” said John Rau, spokesperson for the Cadillac Club. “This has been a dream of ours to have a show like this, and to have it at a beautiful dealership like this is wonderful. We were welcomed here with open arms.”
The seeds of the show were planted about seven months ago when Rau approached Dan Boyer, general manager of Cable-Dahmer Buick GMC Cadillac, about ways to expand the club and try to attract younger members.
Boyer was eager to help.
“I said absolutely,” Boyer said. “So far, I tried to send them a couple of members. We got this deal together. This is our first event together.”
It makes logical sense for the Cadillac Club of Kansas City to work with Boyer at Cable-Dahmer Buick GMC Cadillac.
The Cadillac is in Boyer’s blood. His grandfather started Galen Boyer Pontiac-Cadillac in 1953 and moved it to its current location in 1966. In 1995, it was sold to Broome Cadillac, and in 2012 Broome sold its Cadillac franchise to Cable-Dahmer.
“The cool part is there were a lot of Cadillacs sold out of this store,” Boyer said. “It is kind of full circle.”
The atmosphere on May 9 was quite festive, even with a brief shower that arrived before noon. Music from the 1940s and 1950s played on loudspeakers. Photos were snapped. On that Saturday, customers not only got a chance to look at new vehicles at Cable-Dahmer, but were able to view vintage Cadillacs like the three that Norman Kressmann brought from Raymore: a 1941 Cadillac Fleetwood Special, 1957 Eldorado Seville and a 1983 Cadillac Seville.
“I drove the ’41,” Kressmann said. “My granddaughter drove one and her friend drove the other and just to be safe, my wife followed in a modern car.
“I think this is just wonderful. We worked with Dan Boyer the last several months. He has been so cooperative and helpful setting this up.”
Kressmann said hearing the stories about the cars makes this kind of car show so enjoyable.
“I love the old cars, and sometimes the stories behind them are even better and the people behind those stories are the best part in the car clubs I am in,” he said.
Keegan is a perfect example. He brought a 1939 V-16 Cadillac, of which only four were built that year, and one of them was sold to Hollywood movie star Mae West.
“It is basically a limousine,” Keegan said. “What makes it unique is it has a 16-cylinder engine in there. Most cars have four or six cylinders. Back then they decided they needed 16.”
The one Keegan owns was the fourth one built. He bought it in 2002 from a customer at his car repair shop, Hyde Park Service, 100 E. 39th St., Kansas City.
On May 9, the car was in front of Cable-Dahmer Buick GMC Cadillac, facing Noland Road. It got a lot of attention.
“We like to get the old cars out, wash them up and show them off,” Keegan said. “This is a good opportunity for us at a wonderful venue. There is a connection between the old Cadillac and the new Cadillac. That connection is, of course, style, luxury. It is nice for Dan’s customers to look back and say this is what we remember when we were kids.”
Boyer said there is a lot to be excited about in the future of the Cadillac.
“The cool part about Cadillac is there is kind of a resurgence,” Boyer said. “GM is investing $12 billion into Cadillac over the next five years to bring out 13 new products.
“Our goal is to put some youth in the club, get some younger owners in the club with some of the more current models so we are not just showcasing the old cars, but also some of the new cars.”
To learn more about the Cadillac Club of Kansas City, go to www.kccadillacclub.org. They meet at 4 p.m. on the fourth Sunday of every month at Denny’s, 10480 Metcalf Ave., in Overland Park.
“We have fun events throughout the year,” Rau said. “We do a lot of drives in the spring and fall to historic cities.”
Rau added that they hope the Cadillac car show at Cable-Dahmer becomes an annual event.
“These guys are a tight-knit group,” Boyer said. “They stick together. I think it brings in people who haven’t considered Cadillac in a while and see the old cars and what they have to offer.
“We decided we would see how this goes, but I don’t see why we can’t do it at least twice a year.”
If you have a story you would like to see in Making a Difference, email David Boyce at Drive@ksctar.com