The 38 annual Rendezvous on the East Coast was held once again at Saratoga Springs, NY on Father’s Day weekend. For the past 12 years Rendezvous, the largest gathering of Citroëns in North America, has been organized by driveshesaid.com, which was spearheaded by Robert Monteleone and Kim Walter. Kim unfortunately could not attend this year, but Robert’s efforts to stage all the usual Rendezvous venues were successful.
Those that drove on Thursday or Friday to get there got a good soaking, but that made sunny and clear weather we experienced all weekend all the more enjoyable. This year the Citroën anniversary celebrations included; 80 Years of the Traction Avant, 55 Years of the Panhard PL-17, 45 Years of the Ami8 and 40 Years of the CX.
Thursday many gathered to have dinner at Mama Mia’s Restaurant near the Springs Motel, the ‘central hub’ point for the Rendezvous weekend. Friday morning folks relax and took in some of the downtown stores and cafe’s in Saratoga Springs. At 2 pm there was an ice cream social welcome at Mister Ed’s Memphis Smoke House, a roadside hangout about 5 miles east of the city on Route 29. By 6 pm Rendezvous officially began and registration was in full swing at the Springs Motel. Boxes of pizza kept people fed as the event turned into a welcome party that lasted past midnight.
View a full gallery of Rendezvous 2014 images here.
Saturday morning was the big event with the show field returning to Lakefield Farms about 20 minutes southwest of Saratoga Springs near the village of Balston Spa. The the show field was initially a bit soggy, it dried out with the morning sun and by mid morning there was just a soft under footing to the grass that made for a lovely spongy experience to wander about the 150 or so Citroëns on display. Vendor booths from Dave Burnham, Brad Nauss Automotive and FPS Source did a brisk business. And as always Lance and Michaela Carlson were there is a vast selection of t-shirts. Rendezvous is where were many new members join Citroënvie and existing members renew, so we also had a registration booth at the show field where we had our Citroënvie shirts and hats for sale.
Rendezvous reaches out to all marques and this year drew in classic Mercedes, VW, Peugeot and Renault along with a could of modern Fiat 850s. It was especially nice to see 3 Panhards at the show; 2 lovely PL-17 and a mint 24TL. An arrival breakfast, live French music, the antics of Susan & Joe, the Airborne Jugglers who entertain us every year and a terrific tech session on 2CV carburetors by Axel Kaliske made for an enjoyable day.
The big Rendezvous dinner was held at the Lakefield Farms show field pavilion. Everyone commented on the delicious BBQ pork ribs and chicken, the great selection of side dishes and the mega strawberry deserts that included shortcake and pie! A silent auction was held that included a Velo Solex. During the course of the dinner I gave out Citroënvie fridge/dashboard magnets. The culmination of the dinner was the award ceremony. The winners were:
Favorite Traction Avant: Stephane Palumbo – 15-6H
Favorite Panhard: Dale Martin – PL 17
Favorite Ami: Philippe DeJardines – Ami 8
Favorite CX: Michael Cannon
Favorite 2CV: Mr. Shanks
Favorite Early ID/DS (single headlight): Dave Towle
Favorite Late ID/DS (double headlight): Paul Anderson
Favorite GS: Nebo Djurdjevic
Favorite SM: Angus MacDougald
Favorite French (but not a Citroën): Cota Racing – Peugeot 505
Favorite European (that’s not French): Andy Pickett – VW Minibus
Favorite Not French Not European: Sophia Cossitt-Levy
Favorite of Show: Daniel Noiseux M35
Again this year a food frive was organized by long time registrant Michael Cannon to honor the life of his daughter Gelseigh Karl-Cannon. Food and monetary donations were collected for the Franklin Community Center in Saratoga Spring. And contributions would still be very welcome at this URL: https://www.franklincommunitycenter.org/how-you-can-help/donate/
Sunday morning we gathered at the Springs Motel for breakfast and to enjoy the line-up of Peoples’ Choice Award Winners. Then we made a rolling Citroen parade driving north 20 miles to Glens Falls, NY. We returned to Saratoga Springs for a couple of hours of relaxation. I took a scenic way back, driving over to Fort Edward, south along the Hudson River and around Saratoga Lake. Back at the Springs Motel we were treated to a BBQ dinner and another party to wind down the weekend before we went our separate ways until next year.
Along with the efforts of Driveshesaid, the event was made possible by the support of vendors that included: Brad Nauss Automotive, Dave Burnham Repair & Restoration, Erik deWidt (Classic Motorcars International), FPS West (French Parts Service), Lance & Michaela Hellman, and CITROËNVIE!