Events in 2016

Browse the page or click on one of the links below to go directly to that event report.

End of Year Party (2016 Driving Season) - Fall Rally - Lobster Tour - Movie Night - Day of Triumph -
Western MA Tour - Southern NH Tour - Planning Meeting - End of Year Party (2015 Driving Season)

End of Year Party -- November 12, 2016

by Stan Foster and Debbie Christopher
End of Year Party, Group Photo November 2016

This year we tried something new for our End of Year party. Based on the results of our member survey, we moved the party to November to avoid the potential weather issues of our usual late January date. We also changed the event to a lunch/afternoon party so people could head home before dark. With those changes in place, on Saturday November 12 2016 a total of 29 New England Triumph members gathered at the Holiday Inn in Tewksbury, MA to wrap up our 2016 driving season in style.

The event started with a reception at 11:30am. The room was nicely decorated by the hotel staff. John and Tricia Gibbs had set up the PA system at the podium, hung the NET banner on the wall and had a tripod standing by for the group photo.

John with VTR 1999 Banner

Bruce Penttinen brought the panorama photo from the 1999 VTR National in Portland, ME, a national event planned and hosted by our club. Several party attendees had fun finding their younger selves in the photo.

With the panorama photo resting on the podium John Gibbs did his best Kilroy Was Here impression.

The buffet lunch was served at 12:30. Looking around the room it was clear that everyone was having a good time. One of the great things about the End of Year party is that there is plenty of time for socializing, to catch up with old friends and get to know some of our newer members.

Enjoying our lunch Stephanie wins Stripped Gear award

Following lunch John spent a few minutes reviewing this year’s events and thanking everyone for continuing to support the club. At least ten cars belonging to club members won awards at Stowe’s British Invasion this year and a few of our members have had their cars featured in publications recently. Well done us!

Next up was the presentation of the NET Stripped Gear award, given to a club member who has gone above and beyond in his/her support of the club.

This year’s recipient is Stephanie Trowel, in appreciation of her many contributions to the club both this year and in prior years. The past few years she has been very involved with the club’s Day of Triumph event, helping with the planning and managing the booth on the show day.

Stephanie does not enjoy being the center of attention, but the club officers thought it was time the rest of the club had a chance to thank her publicly for everything that she does. Congratulations Stephanie!

Our Yankee Swap was a lot of fun for a few different reasons. We had a full table of swap gifts, several of which were mailbox shaped. For those who don’t know, for the past several years John Bowe has brought a custom painted, Triumph themed mailbox to the swap and it is usually the most coveted gift, changing hands many times. This year there were several mailbox shaped packages, creating some confusion as to which package contained the real deal and which might be decoys. However, while a couple of the mailbox shaped packages did contain very nice mailboxes, the hottest items this year turned out to be a set of Triumph logo drinking glasses and a large Triumph clock. (I’m sensing a theme here…) In particular, the clock changed hands (no pun intended) many times but because Rick had drawn the best swap number, the prized clock went home with Rick and Stephanie. The twist here is that at the end of the swap, John Bowe revealed that he had provided this custom painted clock and the many mailboxes in the swap were made by other people or were re-gifted from a prior year!

Triumph logo clock

In the end, few people if any went home with the gift that they had first opened but that is what makes the Yankee Swap so much fun. We are all looking forward to seeing Bill Richardson next year modeling the underwear that his wife Deb won in the swap.

Other Yankee swap gifts

Overall it was another great End of Year party with good food and good company and a fun way to wrap up this season. The November date allowed some people to attend for the first time but caused some others to miss the event. Next year we will aim for this same weekend in November (save the date!) but may go back to an evening event. As always, we are interested in any feedback from our club members about any aspect of the party: the date, the time of day, the food, the venue, etc. We would like to see as many members as possible at this event next year so please share your thoughts with any club officer.

Thank you to everyone who joined us this year and a special thanks to John and Tricia Gibbs and the NET team that helped plan the event.

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Ned and Ellen's Fall Rally/Stone Wall Tour -- October 15, 2016

A Kimball's (Lancaster MA) to Kimball's (Westford MA) tour over scenic roads with stone walls, farms and views of Wachusett Reservoir. The tour stopped at the Nashoba Valley Winery for a picnic lunch. There was a stop for a photo op in Harvard at a scenic overlook before heading to Kimball’s in Westford for their famous ice cream. There are some photos from the tour on our Facebook page.

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Lobster Tour -- Saturday September 24, 2016

There were at least a dozen cars at this year's Lobster Tour. The tour started an hour earlier than usual so that anyone attending the Owl's Head event on Sunday could make some headway in that direction after Saturday's drive and lobster dinner. It was a nice autumn day, a bit cool but sunny enough that people were able to put the top down. This tour is always a treat, with lovely views along the coast. Some of the Massachusetts members opted to leave the tour at Kennebunkport and stop for dinner on the way back south in order to get home before dark. We haven't heard any reports yet from those who continued on to Owl's Head but if anyone would like to write something up, we'll post it here.

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Movie Night -- Saturday August 20, 2016

We had a good turnout for our third NET "drive-up" movie night. A few people even drove their Triumphs up to Hampstead NH for the event. We enjoyed pizza and salad before the movie, popcorn during the show and cookies afterwards. The movie was "Kill the Messenger" featuring a British Racing Green TR6 (click on the link for information about the movie including the trailer.)

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Day of Triumph -- Sunday July 31, 2016

Tricia and Tom

Our annual Day of Triumph event is always in late July, when the weather tends to be hot and humid with a chance of an afternoon thunderstorm. Turnout is lower when rain is predicted so every year we sweat it out, hoping we will get good weather for the event. With the severe drought this year, we liked our chances of getting a dry day but once again we had steady rain during most of the event. Despite the soggy conditions, a hardy group with their 18 Triumphs put on an excellent display. We all had an enjoyable day catching up with old friends and making some new ones.

Thanks to the generosity of club members as well as our favorite Triumph parts vendors, we had a well-stocked raffle table. Tricia Gibbs and Tom Walling kept us entertained as they drew numbers and called up the winners to come forward and choose something from the table.

Thelma and Louise in a TR7 There were 19 Triumphs if you include Barbie and her friend who arrived with Bruce. They were having a great time in their TR7. There is a certain Thelma and Louise quality about these two so let’s hope they made it home safely with Bruce.

We want to thank our volunteers who helped out by registering attendees, directing cars, and selling raffle tickets and T shirts. They made the event enjoyable for everyone who attended.

Congratulations to all of our Day of Triumph 2016 Class Winners!

Class1st Place2nd Place3rd Place
TR250Steve Lindquist
Early TR6Rick & Mary BarnardJoe PatneaudeBill Raymer
Late TR6Stan FosterDavid AndersonRick & Stephanie Trowel
TR7Bruce Penttinen
TR8Ned SparrowRichard Douglas
Early SpitfireAnthony Wilson
Late SpitfireEd DoughertyPaula CollinsBob Dexter
GT6Colin Davis
ModifiedRolando Amorin
Special InterestJohn Bowe
Best of ShowSteve Lindquist (TR250)
Spectators’ ChoiceRichard Douglas

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Western Massachusetts Tour and Picnic -- Sunday June 12, 2016

by Stan Foster

Debbie and I met up with Dennis and Karen at 8:30am in Westford MA and were soon on our way west on Route 2 headed for the gathering place for the tour, the Cars and Coffee event at Kringle Candle in Bernardston MA. Our TR6 is equipped with overdrive and I am always impressed with how easily it cruises at highway speeds barely hitting 3000 rpm. We arrived at Kringle Candle soon after 10:30am and found the rest of the gang. During the drivers’ meeting, Tony informed us that Bruce’s TR7 had a broken throttle cable and he hoped to join us en route. Minutes later Bruce called to say the TR7 throttle cable had been replaced. He joined us about 20 minutes into the tour.

Lunch at Hardwick Winery

Tony and Diane’s route took us through some very nice small towns over narrow country roads with road surfaces of varying quality. Dennis and Karen were behind us and I was tempted to get on the radio and ask Dennis to pick up any bits of our TR6 that fell off during one of the rough patches. I’m only half joking as Debbie was predicting the imminent departure of the passenger side door mirror.

Our first stop was at the Hardwick Winery. This is such a nice place to stop. The staff is accomodating, there is plenty of parking, and they have a large deck with plenty of seating for our group. And let's not forget the sangria! Tony and Diane provided cheese and crackers and arranged for pitchers of the winery’s tasty sangria for us to enjoy along with our picnic lunches. This picture of our group is courtesy of the Hardwick Winery’s Facebook page.

Goats and Triumphs

After lunch, we headed out again along some back roads to a farm stand for some ice cream. Once again the TR6 overdrive showed how versatile this option is. I stayed in 3rd gear most of the route just going in and out of overdrive as we varied our speed between 25 and 40 MPH.

We parked next to an area housing rabbits, goats and a miniature horse named Tillie. One of the goats was especially enamored of the gathering of cars, obviously a connoisseur of British engineering.

Around 3:30pm everyone started to head for home. Debbie and I joined Dennis and Karen for the ride back along Route 2 East to Route 495 until we waived goodbye as we took our exit.

Thanks to everyone that joined us for this excellent tour and picnic. A special thanks to Tony and Diane for planning and hosting this fun day in the western part of the NET region.

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Southern New Hampshire Tour -- Sunday April 24, 2016

Cars at Johns shop

We had 21 cars for our first driving event of the 2016 season. This was a joint event with NET and BCNH members plus some FONET ("Friends of NET") members in classic American cars.

People brought breakfast goodies in abundance including muffins, donuts, coffee cake and homemade bread. Thank you to everyone who brought something to share with the group!

Convoy of LBCs Our tour covered nearly 60 miles with a stop at Massabesic Lake about half way through. It was just warm and sunny enough to drive with the top down. After the lake stop, several of us took a tour around the somewhat small parking lot of a local Dunkin' Donuts. This was intended to be an optional stop only for those who wanted to use a real restroom instead of the port-a-potties at the lake but the directions did not make that clear. I wonder what the patrons and staff inside Dunkin's thought of all these LBCs (and one large Mark IX Jaguar) making U-turns in that tight lot!

The tour concluded with lunch in Exeter but many of us returned as a group to John's shop before heading home. Thank you John for another great tour!

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2016 Planning Meeting -- Sunday March 13, 2016

Most years, we’re wondering whether the huge pile of snow in front of the trailer housing our TR6 will melt in time for the first driving event in late April. This year, the lack of snow and the warm weather on the day of our start up meeting allowed me to get the TR6 out of the trailer and drive it to the meeting. Two others did the same, creating perhaps the largest number of Triumphs ever assembled at one of our start up meetings! Here they are in the parking lot of the Yangtze River restaurant in Littleton MA.

Triumphs in the parking lot

John leads the meeting Club Director John Gibbs started the meeting by announcing that all of the current club officers have agreed to continue in their roles for 2016. We still encourage anyone to volunteer for any of the club responsibilities however. For example, Tricia Gibbs could use some help with the club newsletter. This could be someone taking over as newsletter editor or just assisting Tricia. The newsletter editor job is made easier when people provide content so please consider contributing an article that we could publish about you and your Triumph or perhaps an article about a British car show that you attended.

John also suggested that we have an official club photographer, someone who would take photos at our events to be used on our Facebook page, in newsletter articles and on the website. Please contract John if you would like to volunteer.

The password for the members-only section of the club web site will be changed soon for the first time in several years. We will communicate the new password to all members in good standing prior to making the change so don’t forget to renew your membership!

TR7 sales bannerThe next item on the agenda was our annual End of Year party. The venue, price, type of meal and the time of year we hold the event were discussed. For our party this past January, we changed from a plated dinner to a buffet and that seemed to be very popular however that option is more expensive and requires that we get at least 50 people to sign up for the event. So how do we entice more club members to attend the party? Is price a concern? Should we move the event from the middle of winter to a date when the weather is less of a concern? We decided to conduct an anonymous online survey to determine NET members’ preferences for this event. We will let you know how to access the survey when it becomes available.

Bruce Penttinen brought some very interesting items for the group to view including some of the original dealership sales materials and this banner from the launch of the TR7. Bruce reminded us that 2016 is the 40th anniversary of the Triumph TR7. Based on the after dinner conversations, Bruce and Ned Sparrow may be cooking up something special for a Day of Triumph T-Shirt design.

The remainder of the meeting was spent going through the NET event calendar for 2016. It looks like we will have a fun year ahead of us. The club calendar has been populated with the events discussed during the meeting. It is the best way to keep up to date with the details for upcoming events as well as any last minute changes. In addition to our own events, we list other events that we think may be of interest to our members so take a look!

One of those “other events” that several of our members have attended in previous years is The Roadster Factory’s Summer Party. This year’s party will be held on August 4th, 5th and 6th. Tom Walling would like to know if anyone is planning to attend this year and whether they would like to join a group convoy to Armagh, PA with an overnight stop, arriving at TRF on the afternoon of the 4th. Contact Tom if you are interested.

I want to thank everyone who attended this meeting and helped get us off to a good start. We hope to see you for our first driving event, the Southern New Hampshire Tour on Sunday April 24th. You can find all the details on our club calendar. Go to the page for April and click on “Southern NH Tour” to view all the details for this event.

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End of Year Party -- Saturday January 16, 2016

Group Photo 2016

For the most part, Mother Nature co-operated this year. Those coming down from Maine had to brave slippery conditions but for the rest of us, the bad weather was over before we were out on the roads. There were 37 club members at the party including one of our newest members, Anthony Wilson, owner of an early Spitfire. We look forward to seeing Anthony again at future club events.

Debbie receives award John and Tricia Gibbs found a new venue for us this year at the Holiday Inn in Tewksbury MA. It worked out well. The hotel staff was very welcoming, the rooms were clean and comfortable and the food was good so I think we would all agree that this year’s End of Year party was a success! John and Tricia put in a lot of time organizing the event so we thank them for everything they did to throw us a great party.

After-dinner announcements included the presentation of the Stripped Gear award, given to someone who has been of service to the club in the past year. This year the award went to our webmaster (that’s me!) for maintaining and enhancing our club website. Thanks very much! It’s nice to hear my efforts are appreciated. We added two new features this year, a club regalia page and a membership status application. Thanks go to John Gibbs, Rick Trowel and Tom Walling for collaborating on the regalia page (Tom also provided most of the photos), and to Rick for suggesting we provide a way for members to check their membership status and for providing the data updates.

Frank and Carol open wedding gift


There was a very special presentation this year. Frank Frett and Carol Baker got married back in September so the club presented them with two margarita glasses and a bottle of top-shelf tequila. We also passed around a card for everyone to sign. Congratulations Frank and Carol!

They sent the club a thank-you card describing how they first met over 25 years ago through their mutual interest in Triumphs. They plan to try out those margarita glasses on a cold and snowy weekend and think about the warmer days to come. We wish them the very best!

Yankee swap gift table The final event of the evening was the Yankee swap, aka “the great mailbox hunt”. Beginning last year, John Bowe has been wrapping the mailbox in interesting ways so that it’s less obvious which package contains this prized gift. Knowing this, someone did exactly the opposite and disguised their gift as a mailbox! (Notice the package over on the right wrapped in polka dot wrapping paper?) Well done!

There were lots of great gifts this year: wine glasses, cozy blankets, Cadbury’s drinking chocolate, maple syrup, and an industrial-sized flashlight to name just a few of the gifts people were happy to be taking home this year, and of course that one-of-a-kind Triumph mailbox. Frank Frett was the lucky winner this year. You can see him on the left in the group photo above, holding the mailbox.

Karen holds the mailbox The best close-up photo of the mailbox was this one with Karen Sokol taking a turn as interim owner.

For those who stayed overnight, the hotel set up a special area for us to have breakfast together on Sunday morning. We all enjoyed one last chance to eat together, laugh together and celebrate the last moments of a very enjoyable End of Year party.

There are many more photos from the event on the club's Facebook page.

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