During the Corvettes at Carlisle weekend, a number of people in the hobby ranging from media types like myself, members of the GM Corvette Team and selected Corvette vendors are given VIP status and sent out to the show field to pick a Corvette for the celebrity choice award. Winning a Celebrity Choice Award for an attendee is a big deal as not only does the winner receive an award, he gets to drive in the Celebrity Choice Parade by the Grandstands on Sunday.
It’s a huge responsibility and one we take serious here at CorvetteBlogger. For this year’s salute to Corvettes at Carlisle’s co-founder Chip Miller, we selected the white 1967 Corvette Sting Ray Convertible owned by Dennis King as Keith’s Choice Award for 2014.
We have some discriminating standards for a Corvette (and owner) to be deemed worthy of being selected as Keith’s Choice. First, we are primarily interested in classic Corvettes from 1953-72. Next we look for cars that are drivers and must have been driven to the show. We prefer cars that have a long-time owner with the stories to prove it. And finally, while the car should be mostly original, it’s okay if there has been some personalization to the Corvette which makes it unique to the owner.
We found our criteria was met in spades when we struck up a conversation early Saturday afternoon with Dennis King who resides outside of D.C. in Maryland.
Dennis purchased his Corvette from the original owner in 1973, paying just over two thousand dollars for the car. Since then he’s racked up an impressive 218,000 miles on the car by driving it often around town as well as to different events and shows like making the trip three times to the National Corvette Museum.
His 1967 Convertible is powered by the original 327 engine which you will see has been modified over the years. Dennis says most of the work has been done himself including the design of the NASCAR-inspired air box around the air cleaner that sucks in negative pressure air from the rear of the hood. The engine has been bored over and has headers and a upgraded cam. Other changes include a big block hood, the additional headlights mounted under the front fenders and the hot-rod inspired rear tail lights with the purple dots in the center.
One story I really enjoyed from Dennis was that when his daughter was was younger, she would call the ’67 Corvette “Boom Boom” because of the loud side pipes. Going for a ride with dad in Boom Boom was one her highlights of growing up with a 1967 Corvette in the garage. Dennis has a special license plate frame around his rear plate that reads “My Daughter’s Next Toy” so it sounds like this Corvette is destined to remain in the family for quite some time.
One of the reasons that we struck up the conversation with Dennis was the quote that he had printed and taped to his windshield. The quote says “I drive the miles to get the smiles”.
Thanks for taking the time to talk with us Dennis and I congratulate you on owning a Corvette with a backstory worthy of being selected as Keith’s Choice Award.
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