Last Years Fun Times ! 


The Annual Holiday Party was held on December 7TH at the Alpine Haus Banquets in Westchester.  Forty-Five club members came out to celebrate the Holiday Season which began with cocktails and appetizers. Members mingled and spread good cheer as holiday music played in the background. After, a delicious dinner was served which consisted of soup and salad, Pork Tenderloin, Beef and Chicken along with potatoes and carrots. To finish off the meal was Apple Strudel and coffee.

 As usual, after dinner Ken pulled names for the door-prize raffles. Everyone at the end of the evening went home with some gifts along with a bottle of wine and very stuffed tummies.  Many thanks to Ken & Kathy Smizinksi for planning yet again a wonderful Holiday Party. As always, another fun night was had by all.





Those in attendance were: Dan & Karen Anderson, Bill & Jane Balogh, Sean Bickerton, Marcy Burhop, Mike & Laura Cielenski, Art Hahl, Gail Hascek and her guest Gloria Nelson, Peter & Katie Hauser, Roger & Helen Huber, Larry & Karen Kelly, Len & Mary Keil, Pete & Marylu Kramer, Ed Levin and Rose Kovalenko, Jerry & Pat Peterson, Dan & Melinda Pritchett, Bob & Barb Sroka. Gordon Gluff and Mary Ziemba, Madeline Zambon, Lloyd & Joan Schellin, Ken & Kathy Smizinski, Len & Irene Vinyard and Bob & Sue Wenderski, Liz Werth, Jim & Jane Wilson and Tom & Alice Wolfe.       

– Submitted by Laura Cielenski

6th Annual Turkey Dinner 

By Melinda Pritchett


For the past six years the Illinois Region Model A Club has been hosting the annual Turkey Dinner.  It is held a the  Elburn Lions Club where their members cook and serve dinner to the attendees.  This is one of the ways that the Lions Club raises money for their various charitable events.  This year guests attended from four Model A Clubs, the Model T Club, the V8 Club, the local Studebaker Club and our TBird club. 

Ten Model As, two Studebakers, two V8s, and a 42 Plymouth Pick Up truck were brought out. Liz Werth, Len Kiel, and Melinda Pritchett drove their baby birds. 

Members attending were Len, Mary, and Toni Keil, Liz Werth, the Vinyards, the Smizinskis, the Cielenskis, Gail Hascek, Gloria Nelson, the Petersons, the Kellys, the Kramers, the Wilsons, and the Pritchetts.   

The Fabyan Villa & Japanese Gardens 

by Karen Kelly 


We had a bright, blue, almost warm in the sun day for our outing to the Fabyan Villa and Gardens in Geneva, Illinois on Columbus Day.  Twenty-four T-Birders met in the upper parking lot as we waited for our docents to greet us. 


A little background: George Fabyan and his wife Nelle purchased 350 acres of land in Geneva. He achieved his wealth the old-fashioned way; he inherited his father’s business.  The business was fabric and the break-through discovery were seersucker. There’s a debate whether he inherited one or three million dollars. Whichever is true, either amount was quite substantial in the early 1900’s.


Fabyan funded experiments in various disciplines, one of the most important being cryptology. He established laboratories for research. He had unusual animals on the grounds including monkeys, a bear, prized cows and a zebra. Numerous people were in his employ and lived on the grounds. He would take credit for the work of others but would open the grounds to the townspeople in the summer.








We were split into two groups, one headed to the Villa and one to the Japanese Garden. Both sites had their own highlights. 


The Gardens were beautiful, serene and green. We walked the pathways, climbed up and down the bridges, the largest being the Moon Bridge. We learned about the aesthetics and design of a traditional Japanese Garden. This was my favorite part of the visit.


The Villa was smaller than I expected. Originally a farmhouse, it was redesigned by Frank Lloyd Wright. Much of what we learned touring the house related to Wright and his Prairie School design elements. 


All enjoyed the tour of this unusual property. I would have preferred a little more history of George Fabyan and a little less Frank Lloyd Wright, but a nice tour, nonetheless.


The group drove into Geneva and lunched at the Geneva Ale House. Service was great, food was good. The best deal was 

“Mystery Beer” for $3.00.  The bartender reaches in the cooler and what he pulls out is what you get. 


Thanks to the Bruins, Laura Cielenski, Gail Hascek and her friend Gloria Nelson, Srokas, Schellins, Smizinskis, Petersons, Pritchetts, Gordon Gluff & Mary Ziemba, Kramers, Vinyards and Liz Werth for for joining us. 


If anyone is interested, Larry Potash had a Backstory episode about Fabyan. I found the book, “The Woman Who Smashed Codes” by Jason Fagone to be great. The author goes into the background of Fabyan, and how he met and started Elizabeth Friedman on her journey to become the premier U.S. code breaker. Really a great read.


This is your history lesson for the month. Class will resume in January.


Professor K. Kelly, MBS

Fall Tour - The Mighty Mississippi Adventure

The Fall Tour started out Sunny and a bit brisk as the club members congregated at the DeKalb Oasis. Mike & Laura handed out the packets of information for the tour along with survival kits and water.


We headed west to Fulton, Il. with 8 Baby Birds, 4 Retros and 1 daily driver. We headed out on I88 and then we traveled on the old Lincoln Highway (Rt 30). When we reached the Dutch Windmill in Fulton, we were greeted by Debi Ervin who is the Director of Tourism for Fulton. Debi was dressed in Dutch attire and went to each car to welcome the members to the Windmill. The block was closed for our cars to park in front of the Windmill, which made for great pictures.

After our tours in Fulton, we headed across the Mississippi River to Clinton IA., where we had lunch at the Candlelight Inn overlooking the River. When we were finished with lunch, we then headed back over the River and had a leisurely drive down the Great River Road to Moline, Il.  Our final destination for the day was the hotel (The Radisson on John Deere Commons).


Friday morning brought sprinkles and some heavy rain.  We headed back over the River to LeClaire, IA riding on the Great River Road of Iowa. We caravanned to the Buffalo Bill Museum. There we toured the Museum itself which is focused on not only Buffalo Bill but the life along the Mississippi River and local history of LeClarie. After our tour we headed up the hill to the Crane & Pelican for lunch. Our lunch was held in an old River Boat Captains home over-looking the River. Luckily the rain departed, and it just was cloudy as the afternoon was open for members to visit LeClaire and its shops, Antique Archeology (the American Pickers), Mississippi Distillery and or Wide River Winery. That evening we headed down the street to the Celebration Belle Paddlewheel Boat for the Captains Dinner Dance. We had two large tables with a buffet dinner and entertainment. The sun ended up peeking out as we set sail which made for a beautiful sunset.

Saturday morning, we headed up the street to the Deere-Wiman House & Butterworth Center. For lunch we headed back to the River House Bar & Grill and then headed back over the River to Davenport IA., to the German American Heritage Museum where we learned about the German Immigrants that came over to the area. That evening we walked across the street to Johnny’s Italian Restaurant for dinner.

Sunday, Our Homeward Bound Day was gloomy, but spirits were high since Members were happy, they “Survived the Mighty Mississippi Adventure”. We headed out mid-morning and stopped for Lunch in Rochelle, Il. Our lunch spot was the Flight Deck Bar & Grill at the Rochelle Airport.

The Mighty Mississippi Survivors were: Tom & Judy Bruin, Mike & Laura Cielenski, Gordon Gluff & Mary Ziemba, Len & Mary Keil, Larry & Karen Kelly, Pete & Marylu Kramer, Dean & Beth Molburg, Jerry & Pat Peterson, Lloyd & Joan Schellin, Ken & Kathy Smizinski, Len & Irene Vinyard, Bob & Sue Wenderski, Liz Werth, Jim & Jane Wilson, Madeline Zambon & Judith Mitchell.

By Laura Cielenski

Annual Johnsburg Parade