Meet Us in Dubuque

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North American MGA Register GT-44

We at the Minnesota MG Vintage Racers (MMGVR) have been working with the NAMGAR board and the City of Dubuque to bring you a GT you will long remember. While we don’t have everything nailed down yet, we do have some exciting news to share as our plans begin to take shape.

 The featured car next year is going to be the MG race car.  It has never been featured at a GT; but considering how many MGAs have been circling race tracks and taking home trophies over the years, it is time.  We want to send a special invitation to all current and former MG race drivers to join us in Dubuque. Keeping with the race theme, our guest for the week will be David Hobbs.  Hobbs had a distinguished three plus decade driving career in everything from sports cars to NASCAR to Formula 1. He has also spent many years as a race commentator for NBC. We will have a special tie-in to the Vintage Race Festival at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin the following week, but more on that later.

We chose Dubuque for its beautiful sports car roads that wind along the bluffs astride the Mississippi River, its rich history, the wonderfully preserved homes and businesses. It’s a little off the beaten path but easily accessible to most major metropolitan areas in the Midwest. You can choose to arrive by car or plane, or with Dubuque’s location on the Mississippi, you can choose to arrive by boat as well. There are slips available for rent within walking distance of the hotel and convenient to downtown.  This could be your unique opportunity to play Tom Sawyer and navigate your way to join us for GT-44. 

Speaking of the hotel, our base of operations will be the historic Hotel Julien in downtown Dubuque. I encourage you to take a look at the recently restored historic property at The Julien has great spaces for our banquet, vendors, and tech sessions as well as common space to meet old friends and make new ones.  We have dedicated parking for our MGs at the hotel and nearby parking for trailers and tow vehicles. We even have a special covered parking if you bring a vintage race car and stay at the nearby Holiday Inn.

A short drive from Dubuque is Galena, Illinois. It is a small, historic, and beautifully preserved town that boasts many fine restaurants and unique shops. It is also the home of Ulysses Grant, and his home and other mid-19thcentury mansions are available to tour and enjoy. Another short drive takes you to Dyersville, home of Ertl and SpecCast, and to the Field of Dreams. If you are over 40, you probably remember the Kevin Costner movie set deep in an Iowa corn field.  The corn and baseball fields are still there and is available to tour. It has been a popular destination for over thirty years.

We have several drives planned to take you along the Mississippi bluffs, through tree lined valleys with stops along the way at some secluded wineries and breweries.  One destination is the Potosi brewery and National Beer Museum. The Petosi Brewery is the oldest brewery in Wisconsin (and that’s saying something), and the National Beer Museum contains a full research library. You can do both liquid and literary research at this place.

I still haven’t mentioned the Arboretum, the tea room, the spas, the world’s shortest and most vertical railroad, the antique mall or the diecast model outlet. There so many things to do that you may want to book an extra day.  To that end, if you choose to stay longer, the Hotel Julien has agreed to extend our special rate for Sunday.

You may consider extending your stay even longer because of the special tie-in with Road America that I mentioned earlier. Each year Road America hosts a Vintage Race Festival and has several featured types of race cars. We worked with the planners, and they agree to make one of the featured cars MGs. That means that starting Tuesday after GT-44 in Dubuque there will be a host of special events for MGs and MG race cars just three hours away at Road America.  Here is what Road America says about the event.

     Road America announced that the feature of the 2019 WeatherTech International Challenge with Brian Redman presented by HAWK will be a special MG "Focus Event". Widely known as one of the largest vintage racecar gatherings in the United States, featuring several classes of cars racing in multiple groups, the WeatherTech International Challenge with Brian Redman presented by HAWK will return on July 18-21, 2019.

The mid-summer classic will include everything from a special concourse on Friday and Saturday along the streets of Elkhart Lake, to a Historic CAN-AM race, plus All-MG Races and a special scenic drive for any non-racing MG's on Tuesday of race week, making the 2019 event a can't miss spectacle for any racing and MG enthusiast.

"This event has become an annual tradition for hundreds of racers, enthusiasts and thousands of fans every year," said George Bruggenthies, president and general manager of Road America. "We are extremely proud to announce that the event will pay tribute to the MG with an MG "Focus Event" as the MG celebrates its 60th anniversary. Road America is poised to usher in the celebration with a racer's reunion, races for club and pro series- vintage, historic and contemporary racers, a scenic drive for non-racing MG's; a concours with expert and people's choice awards, track touring, parade laps and a vendor marketplace making the 2019 WeatherTech International Challenge with Brian Redman presented by HAWK an event that everyone of all ages can enjoy."

More details for 2019 WeatherTech International Challenge with Brian Redman presented by HAWK including entry information, qualifying procedures, concourse information and tickets are expected in the coming months. 

This will be a unique opportunity to extend your vacation and take part in a premier vintage event on the shores of Elkhart Lake. Registration is still a couple of months away, but with all the expanded possibilities for next summer, we wanted to give you time to consider joining us in Dubuque AND Elkhart Lake. We will be sure to update you as more information becomes available. Check the NAMGAR website for more information about GT-44 in Dubuque and the Vintage Festival. Safety Fast!

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This recently renovated historic property boast guests from Abraham Lincoln to Al Capone, to Sylvester Stallone, and is the perfect backdrop for a Get Together of historic and renovated MGs.