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Roadfly Magazine
Issue 13
Table of Contents

Past Issues Index
Roadfly Magazine
Nissan Maxima
click to enlarge
Issue Thirteen
August 3, 2004
Hybrid Vehicles: Sales on the Rise
Summer BBQ Guide
The Dells Auto Museum
Hot Lap: Top of the Line
2004 Mazda6
2004 Nissan Maxima SE
Coming Next Issue
Chrysler 300C
iPod FM Tuners
Helmet Review

Time Stands Still:
A Trip to the Dells Auto Museum (continued)

1972 Hurst Olds

Dells Auto Museum Store

1970 Pontiac GTO Judge

Plymouth Superbird

For more info see:
Wisconsin Dells
Once inside, there is a nicely appointed gift-shop, complete with various literature, posters, t-shirts, models and other automotive memorabilia. Oldies tunes play in the background, as the Dells Museum staff chats cars with like-minded enthusiasts and afficianados.

Pay a very nominal fee, and the staff will lead you through closed doors to the museum's impressive arrangement of historic automobiles. On this visit, there are 23 vehicles parked in the museum, and each bares an informational card that tells a story about the car's origin, price and current value.

There's a 1986 Indianappolis 500 Pontiac Fiero pace car with less than 10,000 miles, as well as a bright white (with hugger orange interior) 1969 Chevrolet Camaro SS Convertible Indy 500 Pace Car. A massive 1959 Ford Fairlane "Retractable" sits at the end of one aisle; a 1906 Oldsmobile rests at the other end.

"We try to circulate fresh cars into the museum each year," says Lance Tarnutzer. "Each spring, we decide which cars we'll show, and we move the collection around to accomodate them." Tarnutzer is refering to the act in which volunteers and employees drive these timeless classics from just outside of Madison to the Dells. It's quite a sight to behold as 20-some muscle cars, antiques and vintage rides parade down the Interstate each spring.

The cars are washed and detailed, the museum floor is repainted (green) and the cars are carefully parked and arranged. The entire process takes a few weekends to complete.

As mentioned earlier, there's more to the museum than just its great showcase of highly desirable cars. Many visitors venture in to see the large memorabilia collection that includes antique gas pumps, signage and other interesting literature. And still more come to see the large antique doll collection (it's valued at well into the six-figures).

So, the next time you're in Wisconsin, do yourself and your family a favor and consider a vacation to Wisconsin Dells. There are plenty of waterparks, quality hotels, outstanding restaurants and even a casino, should you get the itch to try your luck. However, if you don't feel like gambling and feel more like betting on a sure thing, take an afternoon and visit the Dells Auto Museum - you'll be glad you did. And yes, you can buy a beer and a brat with a side of cheese at just about any restaurant in the Dells area.

(The Wisconsin Dells are located approximately 50 miles north of Madison, Wisconsin on I-90. The Dells are "open" from Memorial Day to Labor Day each summer, with some attractions like the large hotels (many complete with world-famous indoor waterparks) remaining open all year.)

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