DON DOCKSTEADER Annual Garage Sale


May 7, 2005

This years Garage Sale was one of the most pleasant I have attended in the 14 years we have been doing this. The event had a very “family” atmosphere to it. It was the first time in the year that some of the cars had ventured from their garages, sort of Volvo Ground Hog Day. It was good to get together again and enjoy the festivities.

This year’s event was special as it celebrated the Docksteader Family’s 75th year in the automotive industry and our club presented Don and Paul Docksteader with a plaque celebrating the occasion and generally showing our great appreciation for the 14 year association between our club and Don Docksteader Motors. VCBC could not ask for better sponsors.

Mystery Tour 2005 - On The Starting Grid
Don Docksteader Garage Sale 2005 - Club Cars On The Starting Grid
Photo: David Warner

For a bit of club history, it was this same event in 1992 that led to the formation of our club. Dick Foster and I were approached by Ron Brown, then parts and service manager at the newly constructed Cambie St. location of Don Docksteader Motors, and asked if we could arrange for some nice old Volvos to be displayed in the forecourt of the dealership during the garage sale. The display would provide interesting viewing for the garage sale customers, and offer proof to potential new and used car purchasers that Volvos really are long lasting cars.

Of course for Dick and I it was just a great excuse to call all our Volvo buddies and get them together in one place. That 1992 event was quite a success for the dealership and we contributed to that success. As an added attraction, the garage sale included the last of the inventory from the Volvo Canada Warehouse in Richmond. That meant parts for the 544, 122 and 140 as well as current models. At the event Don and Paul Docsteader, and Ron Brown, offered to sponsor a Volvo Club if we were willing to organize and operate it. Dick and I had being considering the possibility for some time and this was the ideal opportunity.

We successfully launched the club and chose a group of directors. For the first couple of years Don Docksteader Motors paid to produce and post our brochures and the first newsletters, and they provided us a location for meetings, technical sessions and our club swap meet. They also offered club members a 20% discount on over-the-counter parts purchases and this benefit of membership helped the club to grow rapidly. Today we have the biggest single marque car club in the Province with over 400 members and we enjoy parts discounts at most of the Volvo related businesses as well as Lordco.

Mystery Tour 2005 - On The Starting Grid
Award Winners: Darcy Bullock and David Warner
Photo: David Warner

As for this years Don Docksteader Garage Sale; it could hardly have been better. This event is serious business for the dealership. They sell a great many parts as well as new and used cars on this day. It is an important event and we do contribute to its success. The bargains are real. Where else are you going to get Castrol GTX for $1.75 a litre.

For the club members this was not serious business at all. We just enjoyed the fine weather and the association with our friends and of course freeloading at the donut or hotdog stands.

The club benefitted from lots of membership renewals and new memberships as well as clothing sales. The turnout of Club cars was exceptional in number, variety and quality. We kept score just for interest. (6 544s, 4 122s, 2 140, 2 164, 6 1800 coupes and 3 1800ES, 3 240, 1 740, 1 960 and 2 70series.) A whole contingent arrived from Washington State and we always enjoy their company.
Its tradition to give out peoples choice and runner up awards and both winners have won many times before. David Warner’s blue 72 1800ES won peoples choice and Darcy Bullocks 72 1800E coupe took runner up. Often they get most of the votes and it is easy to tally. This year with so many nice cars there were 4 other cars that were within a vote or two of the winners. It just shows you how nice the cars are getting. With the awards awarded, and the dash plaques distributed, people slowly started to leave for the day. I was about to do the same when I discovered that the battery in the 145 Express had chosen this day to give up. It resulted in me making one more donation at the parts counter. With the new battery installed I clattered off in the direction of home. Happy and $100 poorer. 