Imperials at Iola, Wisconsin 2000

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This past weekend, July 6-9, was the annual Antique Car Show at Iola, Wisconsin, which included a large contingent of show cars, including many pre-war vehicles, a Car Corral with 500+ cars for sale, and a swap meet with over 4000 vendors. This year's theme was "Century of Progress".

I attended for the first time this year. My wife, six boys and I headed out Friday afternoon in our 76 Eldorado convertible and had a fabulous top-down drive through northeast Iowa, southeast Minnesota, and central Wisconsin. The weather was perfect for cruising and car-showing this weekend--cool and overcast. It did sprinkle and eventually rain on Saturday, but not for long. It did probably keep some cars away, and I felt bad for the owners, but it was great for spectators!

There was no way we could see the whole show in just 6-or-so hours we were there, and I didn't get many pictures, but we did see a fair number of Imperials, including 2 that were for sale. If anyone else was at the meet and has pictures they'd like to share, please email me at and I'll post them here.

Mike "Moron56" Trettin
Newton, Iowa

61 Fin

Fin shot of a beautifully restored 1961 4-dr hardtop for sale for $15,500. Car is owned by a man in Minnesota (sorry, no other info.) and was previously restored and owned by Jess Ruffalo. Everything works, including the a/c, and the owner said he just took the Imp on a trip to Mount Rushmore.



Engine Compartment

A shot of the 1961's engine compartment. Owner says he gets 16-18 mpg on trips, but he's a retiree and can't afford to own "a rich man's car" any more. When I asked if it runs/drives as good as it looks, he replied "Better".

61 Interior

Everything about this 1961's interior looked very nice.



Toilet Seat

Close-up of the Flitesweep decklid trim shows off the charcoal gray metallic paint--a gorgeous color for this car.

73 LeBaron

Also in the car corral (cars for sale) was a very nice 1973 LeBaron.



73 Badge

Close-up of the Imperial nameplate/emblem. The car appeared to be rust-free and straight, with very nice paint. Asking price was $3750.



Rear Shot

Rear view was also very clean and straight. What color is this, anyway? Honeydew? Golden Fawn??



62 Convt

Back end of one of Jess Ruffalo's 40+ cars, in this case a 1962 Imperial Crown convertible. The red was stunning, especially against the lush green Wisconsin grass!



61 Imperial, 60 Chrysler Convertibles

In the main show tent were these two lovely convertibles, a 1961 Imperial Crown and 1960 Chrysler Windsor. Also in the tent was another of Jess Ruffalo's cars, a 1961 white Imperial coupe.



59 Convertible

Yet another of Jess Ruffalo's cars that was at the show. I failed to get a picture because of a sudden rain shower, and the fact that his car was under a tent, but here is a picture of his 1959 convertible from an article in Collectible Automobile magazine.



63 Convertible

A 1963 convertible departing just as the rain was about to start in earnest. I've seen this car before back at its home in Des Moines, Iowa.



68 Convertible

A lovely 1968 convertible parked in the show field.



The Trettin Boys

Mike Trettin's boys outside a little mom-and-pop motel in Wisconsin. We had a great trip driving the bomber 1976 Eldorado convertible through Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin.

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