What's in your Garage? A series by Bob Friedrich host of Access Communication's car show - Cruisin on 7.
Elvis's car is alive and well at the Spy Hill Garage
Many people believe Elvis's first new car was a 56 Cadillac, but it was really a Pink and White 55 Crown Victoria Ford and it is at the Spy Hill Garage in Regina.
On my show at Access Communications called Cruisin on 7 I have seen my fair share of cars and garages. Driving South on Pasqua street past Performance Marine one would not realize the jewel that exits at the far corner of Wayne and Kathleen Lorch's boat dealership. It's the "Spy Hill Garage and Elvis Museum". No, Elvis has not left this building, he is alive and well, including his childhood two room Shotgun House from Tupelo Mississippi exact to scale.
But, Elvis and cars are not the only stories this Garage holds. The creation of the snow plane is the real Saskatchewan story. What is that you ask? It's an enclosed cab on skis powered by a huge airplane engine and prop. Wayne's dad invented it, patented it, and test drove it for the folks at the Legislature on Wascana Lake in 1929. Many an expected mother in rural Saskatchewan breathed a sigh of relief as she heard the Doctor's snow plane come up her road.
Inside the Spy Hill Garage, Wayne shares they were a Ford Dealer alongside the Snow Plane Manufacturing business. And sure enough the garage is full of Fords including an exact model of Elvis's Crown Vic, and an early 50's red Ford convert just like the one Wayne had in his younger days at Spy Hill. But, in amongst all these Fords are two British Cars, both real Gems. They come from Wayne's days working in Saskatchewan's Agent General's Office in London. The first one is a rare Morgan Plus 8. These rare cars came with a Rover engine that was actually a Buick Engine. The car is built on wooden frame members. A little further down is the crème de la crème a red XKE Jaguar convertible. XKE's have skyrocketed in value in recent times.
Alongside are Fords of all kinds, Galaxies, Thunderbirds, a Lincoln and many others. Wayne has an eye for real collector cars. However it's not all about their hobby the Lorch's give back to the community. Kathleen's Elvis museum accepts donations for its tours and in return they have helped many people in need with the proceeds from their patron's support. Walking around the garage one finds all kinds of service station memorabilia from glass gas pumps to oil cans, all part of the fun Wayne and his wife like to share about Saskatchewan's automotive history. My favorite is still the XKE . As a young kid I can remember seeing one parked close my house. I actually hugged it as I could not believe how beautiful it was. And that is the best part of Wayne's garage he will let you sit in the cars and touch them to feel the magic of their designs making it a memorable life experience for anyone.
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