SEBRING — Some wore period costumes, and some came with vintage cars.

All who went downtown Saturday to the Roaring 20s Arts and Crafts Festival had fun in the sun, of which there was plenty.

Ron Kullgren of Trevor City, Michigan, brought down one of his Model A Ford cars this year, a black-fendered and green-body 1931 two-door Model A Phaeton, a four-passenger canvas top complete with cowl lights and both floor and column throttle.

Kullgreen said the throttle on the column served as the first ever cruise control for the 40-hp engine, only it didn't disengage when you hit the brakes.

Freb Skubal of Sebring had his 1928 Model A coupe. It once had a rumble seat. A previous owner said the only ones in his family who could fit back there were his grandchildren, and since he didn't feel safe having them ride back there, he took out the seat and put in a three-cubic-foot wood truck bed.

"It's not a big payload," Skubal said, as he adjusted a couple of the flags he had fanned out in a holder on the hood of his car.

Bill and Linda Beck of Shelbyville, Indiana, had a replica of the 1925 Harry Hooker Special — a bare-bones race car built by a Texas oil magnate of the time who "had more money than he could spend," Bill Beck said.

So he got into racing.

With no roll bar, safety cage or helmet to speak of — just a leather flyers helmet — drivers would often try to jump out if the car lost control, Bill Beck said, because if it overturned with them, it would kill them.

Bill Beck said he's taken it out on the track at Sebring International Raceway.

Though it can go 70 mph, he said, "at 50 mph, it's a handful."

The 500-600 pound car was parked next to a long-nosed hot rod devised out of a Model A body and a Rolls Royce grill. It drew a lot of gawkers, but not a lot of information from the owner, who wasn't readily available.

Interspersed in the crowd were men in fedoras and women in flapper dresses and feathered headbands.

One whole family dressed up for the occasion, including Susan Smith of Sebring, Jennifer Biedler of New Port Richey, Theresa Biedler of Lake Placid, Sharon Nader of Lake Placid, Sheila Alsenady of Sebring. At least two middle to high-school age children had dressed up with them, but, slightly embarrassed, didn't give their names.

As always, the event had arts and craft vendors, around the circle and up and down Ridgewood Drive. Food vendors had booths on North Commerce Avenue and West Center Avenue. 

Food options included kettle corn, barbecue, burgers, bratwurst, Italian sausage, fried brownies, fried Twinkies, fried candy bar, funnel cake, pulled pork sandwiches, chicken strips, nachos, Sno-cones, pizza, Philly cheese steak, ice cream and soda floats.

At noon, Eugene Snowden, 20-plus year Orlando music veteran started playing some blues with his soul/funk band “The Legendary JC’s.”

Theresa Biedler, replete in a bright red flapper dress, headdress and modern digital SLR camera to capture the moment, remarked that it was good weather.

Nader and Alsenady, however, said they wouldn't have minded more than a breeze.


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