The NEAR Mobile Hall of Fame Museum operates on here for 2015 HoF Friends

NEAR Mobile Hall Of Fame Museum
On Display

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Riverside Reunion 2014

Gathering of the Faithful 2014

Colchester of the Green 2014
Photos Courtesy of
Scott Poirier and Bill Henry

Waterford Speedbowl 2014

Stafford Speedway 2014

Norwood Reunion 2014

Summer Knights 2014

Danbury 2013

Danbury 2013

Norwood Reunion 2013

Waterford Speedbowl 2013

"Get Your Motor Running:
25 of the World’s Best Motorsports Museums"
April 27, 2016

The New England Auto Racers Hall of Fame Mobile Museum has been recognized by Independent Motors in Boulder, Colorado, as one of “25 of the World’s Best Motorsports Museums”!!!

To be included in a list that includes, to name a few:

Richard Childress Racing (RCR) Museum, North Carolina
Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing, Florida
Donington Grand Prix Exhibition, England
Museo Ferrari, Italy
NASCAR Hall of Fame, North Carolina

is amazing; this list reads as a "Who's Who" in motorsports museums!!

The NEAR mobile museum, which operates on donations, travels to New England events with the New England Antique Racers Club (NEAR) featuring a visual history of New England automobile racing.

Back in 1997, NEAR members began the hard work to establish the NEAR Hall of Fame; the first Hall of Fame in New England for auto racing. The first induction of twelve race legends was held on February 1, 1998, in West Springfield, Massachusetts. Since then, we have inducted 207 individuals into the New England Auto Racers Hall of Fame, which is administered by the New England Antique Racers.

The mobile museum allows the club to continue their efforts in the preservation of New England racing by sharing the history of the Hall of Famers (track owners, promoters, publicists, drivers, car owners and engine builders who have made contributions to the racing sport); as well as display several rare memorabilia items representing decades of auto racing history throughout the region. Click here to check out a few pictures of the mobile museum.

It is truly an honor to be included with these incredible museums from all over the world!!

Please visit Independent Motors for the full article.

By Judy Poirier

***Drivers, and a New Home, Wanted***
for the
NEAR Mobile Hall of Fame Museum
July 23, 2015

Drivers Wanted for the NEAR Mobile Hall Of Fame Museum; and a central, secure, location to park the truck for easy access that will minimize travel time for volunteer drivers.

For a person to be considered as a driver they must be a NEAR member, have valid driver’s license and have a good driving record.

The ideal location for the truck’s “home” would be in Connecticut or southern Rhode Island.

This is a wonderful opportunity for members to be instrumental in sharing a visual history of our rich automobile racing history with the public. If you are interested, please contact Paul Masse at (401) 769-3484.

Attention NEAR Members!
We need your help…
June 14, 2015

The Hall of Fame Mobile Museum is on its way to mobility…the club has facilitated truck repairs and we need your generous financial support to complete the restoration and make it roadworthy along with adequate operating funds; our goal is to raise $5,000.

As reported in April on the website, about a dozen members generously stepped up to donate to the NEAR Hall of Fame Mobile Museum when it was reported the truck needed a motor exceeding the current truck budget; showing an amazing display of generosity and solidarity from our club members.

As members, you know the mobile museum features a visual history of 196 New England Auto Racers Hall of Famers; recognizing track owners, promoters, publicists, drivers, car owners and engine builders’ contributions to the racing sport; as well as several rare memorabilia items representing decades of auto racing history throughout the region in our mobile museum.

Reaching our fund raising goal will allow the club to continue to operate the Hall of Fame Mobile Museum so that we can fulfill its purpose – “our dedication to the preservation of the fellowship and nostalgia of automobile racing; lest we forget the efforts that went into the making of this great sport. Honor outstanding people in the field of automobile racing and develop & foster knowledge of the history of automobile racing in New England among interested individuals and groups as well as the general public.”

Again, for those members who have already donated, THANK YOU!

If you are able, consider being part of assisting the club in meeting the truck goal, no gift is too small; please send your donations to the club business address at:

New England Antique Racers
PO Box 812
Meriden, CT 06450

Your generosity is greatly appreciated!

Paul Masse
"NEAR Members Rise to the Occasion"
April 25, 2015

In recent years the NEAR Hall of Fame Mobile Museum has been plagued with mechanical issues and was just plain getting "tired". But after months of discussion and exploring options, there is finally reason to believe that old workhorse will soon be running like new again.

The HoF Mobile Museum committee sought out vendors and estimates for truck repairs. At the April meeting, the committee made a recommendation that the truck be repaired at Dunleavy's Truck and Trailer Repair in Connecticut, where it was recently delivered for inspection and estimates. The Board of Directors unanimously approved the committee's recommendation.

Work is expected to begin next week on the truck to replace the tired old engine, freshen the transmission, and make other repairs to brake lines, burned wires, new starter, etc. Dunleavy's will also explore options to change the rear end gears to reduce highway RPMs.

Professional work like this doesn't come cheap, and the $7,600 estimate is more than what is available in the truck fund - which is also used to cover expenses for taking the HoF Mobile Museum to NEAR displays during the season. But NEAR members are rising to the occasion! Shortly after the vote at the April 21, 2015, NEAR meeting, JoJo Farone raised his hand and offered to donate $100 towards the cost of repairing the truck. His donation was followed by another. Then more members raised their hands. Before it was over at least 9 of the 27 or so members present had committed to donate directly to the truck fund.

NEAR President Paul Masse expressed his amazement and sincere appreciation to everyone who stepped up and donated.  He went on to say he hoped that when word gets around about the incredible show of solidarity, that even more members and supporters will commit to donating to the truck fund. Anyone who does wish to make a donation may send them to:

New England Antique Racers
PO Box 812
Meriden, CT 06450

Please enclose a note stating the donation is for the truck fund. Your support is greatly appreciated.

By Jim Williams
New England Antique Racers at Gathering of the Faithful
October 13, 2014

On October 18, 2014, the New England Antique Racers (NEAR) Mobile Hall of Fame Museum will be at  Plum Corner, Route 105  in Rochester, MA (GPS address: 565 Rounsville Road, Rochester, MA).

The members of NEAR who bring a car for display will be granted FREE admission with your current NEAR membership card.

In order to plan the space around the HoF, please contact Jack Wegman, (508) 888-3103, to let him know you are bringing a car. The event runs from 9am to 3pm for the public, so please be there by 8am to be set up in time for the opening.

The events include many displays, vending booths and instructional venues; of course there will be food...including ‘chowdah’...

This event is an excellent opportunity for our members in the Massachusetts, Cape Cod and Rhode Island area to enjoy a wonderful final outing before the cold weather and the yard work begins in earnest and the cars are stored till spring.

If you can’t bring your race car, bring your street car.

If the weather looks troubling call (508) 888-3103, Rain date is Sunday, October 19, 2014.

See you at the show and be sure to wear your NEAR gear!

By Bill Henry

New England Antique Racers
Mobile Hall of Fame Schedule
August 27, 2014

Many folks that visit the website are not members yet and would like to know where the truck will be because there are always good vibes when the truck is at the track or supporting a still show.

So August 30th, Saturday night at Seekonk Speedway on Rt 6 in Seekonk MA is a running show come out and see us run.

August 31st at The Riverside Reunion and NEAR picnic at the Polish Club of Agawam on 139 Southwick St Route 57 in Feeding Hills MA from 10am to 4pm. A great time, rain or shine, as we have food cover from the elements, contests, raffles, special T Shirts and many Hall of Famers saying they will be available for pictures and autographs.

On Sunday, September 21st, the Mobile Museum will be on the Boston Common, by invitation, to reveal the history of Automobile Racing in New England. There will be numerous cars of all makes. This is a free event and, if you are in the area, a guaranteed crowd pleaser for anyone who has a passion for the automobile.

Moving into October, the mobile truck will be at the Pines Reunion on Saturday, the fourth (4th), in Groveland, MA. The Plainville Reunion in Berlin, CT, at the Berlin Fairground on Saturday, October 11th and the Gathering of the Faithful in Rochester, MA, on October 18 -- with a rain date of October 19. To check the weather conditions and the status of the show go to Regional Weather.

Lastly, on November 16th, at the New England Auto Racers Hall of Fame Banquet at Maneeley’s -- located in South Windsor, CT.

Tickets to enjoy this event are available at the Picnic on August 31, in the newsletter now and online in the near future.

Hope to see you at one or all of these events.

By Bill Henry

Colchester on the Green
August 27, 2014

On August 20th, NEAR attended the car show at "Colchester on the Green" in CT. Representing NEAR were Jim Splettstoeszer with the #87, Ron Carlson with the #85, Scott Poirier with the #73, George Cleveland in the #5 and Gerry Blanchette in the #49. The NEAR Mobile Hall of Fame was there as well. Sponsored by the Good Times Motoring  Club of Colchester the Green was covered by many restorations, some wonderful original cars and trucks. Conversations with the owners provided a rich history of their cars and a passion for the automobile.  "Thank you" to Good Times Motoring Club for the nice trophy and the hard work by those who put the show together, especially NEAR member Ted Grey.

By Bill Henry

Follow the New England Antique Racers Mobile Hall of Fame Museum to great racing in Connecticut
June 19, 2014

On Saturday June 21, 2014 the "Truck”, along with a couple of Vintage Modified race cars, will be at Waterford Speedbowl; located at 1080 Hartford Turnpike in Waterford, CT.  The event is the Whelan Modified North Tour; only appearance at the 'bowl this season. The Mr. Rotor 161 will feature many of the top contenders in the world of Modified racing. The grandstands open to the public at 1pm,  Modified time trials are at 5pm and the racing program commences at 6:30pm.

The truck will be there with NEAR gear and displays of the famous individuals who have been inducted in the Hall of Fame for their racing exploits as drivers and owners; as well as promoters who made this type of racing a New England haul mark event.  Look for fast cars and close wheel to wheel excitement.  

Be sure to stop by and say "hi" to R.A. and Ric and take the time to learn about the rich history around our section of the racing world. While there, be sure to learn about the benefits of NEAR membership as a new member or renew or extend your membership for uninterrupted information found only in the newsletter.

On Friday, June 27, the HOF truck and boys will be at Stafford Motor Speedway in support of our static display of famous and vintage racing cars. Provided for your viewing pleasure and photo opportunities by members of NEAR, these machines each has a special story to tell. So take a moment and speak with the present owner and learn more about our racing heritage. 

You never know which Hall of Fame member will be there to autograph a special item just for you.  The event is the SK Light Modified Xtra Mart D. There will be charity racing with karts and a fireworks show at the conclusion of all racing. The Speedway is located at 55 West Ave in Stafford Springs, CT. So come on down and celebrate the start of summer and the end of the school year at two of Connecticut’s great racing facilities known for family fun.

By Bill Henry

NEAR Mobile Hall Of Fame Museum
On Display At
Norwood Reunion
June 1, 2014

On Sunday, the first of June, the New England Antique Racers appeared at Bezema Motors on Route 1 in Norwood, MA; just a hop skip and a jump from where the former racing facility stood. Now just a memory as progress claimed this legendary site for yet another shopping mall.

Seen in the viewing area on this beautiful Sunday were Hall of Fame drivers who raced at Norwood, Carl "Bugs" Stevens a two (2) time track Champion, Leo "the Lion" Cleary with one (1) track championship to his credit and Pete Hamilton who started in the street division in 1962 and went on the win the Daytona 500 during the July race at Daytona as well as two races at Talladega in 1970 driving for Richard Petty in the ‘Superbirds.

Hall of Famer Val LeSieur, who is presently a member of the board of directors, was also seen on the paddock.

The NEAR Hall of Fame Mobile Museum was present stocked with a supply of NEAR related items.  Jim Torok brought the Lou Funk 009 from the Danbury Racearena with the famous Buick straight 8 motor. Also appearing with Jim was a potential new member for the club, his granddaughter Callen, who had her own number 13 mini car. The vehicle was prepared by Jim and sponsored by her dad’s father, Big Jack, who already had his sponsorship lettered on the car.

On behalf of all the folks who came to the show, NEAR would like to thank Bezema Motors for making their space available and for the light lunch they provided.

By Jim Torok

NEAR Mobile Hall Of Fame Museum
On Display At
Frank Maratta Auto Show And Race-A-Rama
March 1, 2014

The New England Auto Racers' Hall of Fame Mobile Museum will roll onto the floor this weekend, March 1, 2014, at the Frank Maratta Auto And Race-A-Rama Show.

The show takes place Saturday (10 a.m. – 9 p.m.) and Sunday (10 a.m. – 5 p.m.) at the Better Living Center at the Eastern States Exposition grounds in West Springfield.

The mobile museum features a visual history of the New England Auto Racers Hall of Fame.

Instituted in 1998 and administered by the New England Antique Racers, the Hall of Fame boasts 185 inductees including notable names such as Richie Evans, Ron Bouchard, Bugs Stevens, Rene Charland, Pete Hamilton, Fred DeSarro, Ed Flemke, Sr. and Bill Slater.

Also featured within the museum are several rare memorabilia items representing decades of auto racing history throughout the region.

Voting ballots for the 2014 Hall of Fame Inductions will also be available at the museum display through the weekend.

NEAR will also award its longest running award over the weekend, the Frank Maratta Award, which has been presented annually since 1981. This year’s recipient is 1999 Hall of Fame inductee Billy Greco for his unwavering support of NEAR.