Back to the Bricks®

April 2023 Newsletter

120 days until Main Event Saturday!

April 21st, 2023

Latest from the Chairman of the Board

Hello Back to the Bricks® Friends,

Wow, we have had quite a bunch of crazy weather lately. The big swings in temperatures are hard to adjust to but the good news is that it is SPRING so let us get those cars ready to roll because we have a full calendar of great shows coming this year.


Hopefully, you were able to catch the announcement on Thursday about TUNE UP PARTIES for this year. We have six great locations again and a new sponsor, Huntington Bank, for these events. I know our Tune Up Chairman Tony Bauer works tirelessly to bring us the best locations to cruise to and support those communities. Back to the Bricks® is lucky to have Tony leading the Tune Up team. What is nice about the six different locations is, we get to travel in all directions of the county. We are in the east in Davison, to the west in Flushing, to the south in Linden and Fenton, and north in Birch Run and Mt Morris. We hope you put them in on your calendar, and plan to attend them all. Registration will open June 1st, for all August festivities, which are FREE to attend, but only those that register can win the prizes and giveaways.


We are exactly one month away from our 3rd Annual Dust ‘em Off Car Show. It is going to be a fantastic event. We will have it all, great music, food trucks, swap meet, door prizes, and more. So, if you haven’t registered yet, do so today! Already over 900 car enthusiasts are signed up! It is just one of our “over the top” experiences this year, you will not want to miss.


See you soon!

Thank you, 

Al Jones

Chairman of the Board

Back to the Bricks®


LAST CALL for the Founders Promo Tour

The Back to the Bricks® Promo Tour Team is gearing up to take off!!! Only 49 days until we hit the road. The route maps have been created by our captains, the itineraries are set, the Promo Tour Booklet is about to go to the printers, the cities are excited, the museums await our arrivals, and we know we are ready!


There's still time to register and take part in this year's tour to Adrian Michigan, Auburn Indiana, South Bend Indiana, and then to Battle Creek Michigan to wrap up the tour. Registration will close on May 1st this year, so do not miss your chance to take off and explore. Even if you can only do 3 out of the 4 stops, JOIN US. Can’t stay overnight in one city? That’s okay, JOIN US.


With your registration comes two collectors T-shirts, Lanyards for you and your passenger, Promo Tour Booklet, Hotel list with discounts, and so much more! The value is there, the experience is amazing, the friendships you make are long lasting, and this is the tour to attend. The Back to the Bricks® Founders Tour 2023.

For more information click the link below. 

Founders Promo Tour

Upcoming Events - Mark your calendars

3rd Annual Dust 'em Off Car Show

May 21st, 2023

Public Car Show Hours: 10am - 3pm

Held at the Dort Financial Center

3501 Lapeer Rd. Flint MI 48503

Registration open NOW

Emails with QR Codes will go out to registered Participants soon

Swap Meet Space information on our website, Vendors - Email

Back to the Bricks Celebrates the 70th Anniversary of the Corvette

June 30th, 2023

Show Hours: 5pm - 9:30pm

Held at the former GM SPO

6200 Grand Pointe Dr. Grand Blanc Twp., MI 48439

Registration opens May 1st

Classic Car & Trucks, Show Cars welcome, gates open at 5pm. Special EARLY Entrance for Registered Corvettes 4pm.

Back to the Bricks Road Rally

1st one is July 15th, 2023

Starting line: 8:00am

Line up is at Shea Automotive

5135 Corunna Rd, Flint, MI 48532

Registration Opens in June

Tune Up Week

August 7th - 12th, 2023

Visiting six different cities

Sponsored by Huntington Bank

Visit Website for full details

Registration Opens June 1st, for ALL August events

Vice Chairman Talks Registration & QR Codes

Hey everyone,

We are sitting here just in shock, Dust em' Off is almost here and registration is filling up fast!

If you want to be eligible for prizes and an early parking spot, you must register. When you register you will receive a unique QR Code that will come via email. Make sure you bring your QR Code, either print it out, or show your email on your phone to the information booth when you arrive to check in. This enters you into the contest, so you will be eligible for amazing prizes. Emails containing these QR Codes will go out in an email the first week of May.


We get a lot of questions about the QR Codes, so I thought I would share a little information about what they are, what they contain regarding captured information and how we use them. Here’s the great news about your QR Codes, they are unique for you, and you alone. Each one of your unique QR Codes once scanned in, shows your name, phone number and your vehicle information so we can contact you if you win a prize. Only our scanner chairman can see this information, and our policy is we do not ever share your information with anyone. Our QR Codes are created and works only with our programming, no one else’s. We use the data on cars for our future events, marketing, and planning.

Please start looking for your QR Code starting May 1st and hope to see you at the show.

Thank you!

Ralph Messer

Vice Chairman

Back to the Bricks®

Back to the Bricks® Scholarship Program

Back to the Bricks® deadline is fastly approaching!!!!

PLEASE share with anyone you know who will be pursuing post-secondary study/training at a college or technical school in auto-body repair/painting, automotive design, auto mechanics, electrical/manufacturing/mechanical engineering, robotics, sales and marketing, software development for automotive applications, welding, or a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) related program.

Application deadline is Friday, May 5th 2023

See our WEBSITE for full details

McFarlan Park Honors Veterans in Downtown Flint

McFarlan Park is the City of Flint’s first park, purchased in 1875. The park is named after Alexander McFarlan who was a Michigan politician and a prominent Flint lumberman and businessman. What makes this small park so unique from the other parks in the area, is that the park also has the designation as Genesee County’s official war memorial, dedicated on May 30, 1951.

Listed on the park’s memorial columns are the names of Genesee County veterans who gave up their lives in defense of our county from all wars, battles and conflicts dating back to the Civil War to the present day. In 2012, the City of Flint entered into an agreement with the Friends of McFarlan Park, Inc., whereby the city authorized FOMP to oversee park renovation, maintenance, and programming. Soon after entering into the agreement, FOMP began developing a master plan to address the physical deterioration of the park.

Over the past year, thanks to the tireless efforts and financial support from Sharp Funeral Home, Signs by Crannie, Goyette Mechanical, Curbco Inc., Home Depot, UAW Local 598, Genesee County Department of Veteran Services, Keep Genesee County Beautiful and scores of individual volunteers, the park has received new concrete, landscaping, electrical, replacement of the panels containing the names of the veterans, and the addition of six new flag poles and military service flags. And they are not done yet!

Friends of McFarlan Park, Inc., are excited to announce they are far enough along to now plan, and look forward to, a formal park rededication ceremony. Back to the Bricks® is proud to support their efforts and will support this rededication, so stay tuned for a fun cruise evening in July of 2023.

Visit their website below to learn more

Friends of McFarlan Park Flint

Genesee County Historical Society

"The Museum Moment"

By: Gary Fisher

President - Genesee County Historical Society

We took my Pops to The Henry Ford Museum a while back. My mom had just passed, and we were hoping for a distraction. Hard to be so happy in times like that, but we loved history, and cars, so it seemed a logical choice to try. As we walked around admiring the different classic and historic automobiles, we came upon a sleek and gorgeous 1963 Buick Riviera. Dad and I were the only people admiring it except for one other woman who was studying it.

Pops and I started talking about the car and dad began to tell me what it was like building the Riviera’s. He had spent all of his 30-year career as a Utility and Repairman at Buick. His first job was in 1962 when Buick had started to manufacture the ‘Rivvy’s’ as many called them. He told me all about the various intricacies of the car, including unique tiny details about things that only a guy who had to fix them as they rolled down the line would know and remember.

The woman standing next to us was clearly leaning in and eavesdropping on our conversation. She became positively electrified as she listened to my dad’s stories. “You actually built the Buick Riviera?” she said. “Well, I do not know if I built this one here specifically, but yes, I helped build the 63 Buick Riviera." At this point she identified herself, said she was Chinese American, and was escorting a group of Chinese nationals and automobile tourists that day. I told her I didn’t know that there was such a thing as an “automobile tourist.” “Oh yes,” she exclaimed with delight. “It’s a real thing.”

As it happened, her group of Chinese automobile tourists were in the cafeteria having lunch. “You know they absolutely revere the Buick in China,” she informed us. “The Chinese Emperors all drove Buicks.” Can you hold on a second?” she inquired. “Sure,” we said, exchanging quizzical looks.

Within a few minutes, she returned beaming with the entire group in tow. Pops was quickly surrounded by two dozen Chinese automobile tourists with cell phones turned to camera mode. “They can’t wait to meet you!” the tour guide exclaimed. The ‘Rivvy’, especially this first model was a very special vehicle indeed, particularly in China where we learned the Buick reigns supreme. “To meet a man who actually helped build them. Incredible!” she exalted. The tourists quickly circled around dad.

When they found out he built them in Flint, the ancestral home of The Buick*, their excitement ramped up. Only few spoke some English, and the tour guide filled in the blanks for the others as Pops waxed poetic about his days crafting iterations of the gleaming silver beauty in front of us.

The rest of the time was filled with hugs, autographs, and photos. Dad was a genuine celebrity! He was beaming, and so was I. Our first smiles since we lost Ma really. My wife and mother -in -law soon joined us in front of the display. When the last Buick fan left us, we turned to head home. After all, nothing could top what just happened. Dad was over the moon.

All the way home, he talked excitedly about the experience. “Can you actually believe it?” he asked. “Me a celebrity”? “Yea Pops I can. I saw it. That was impressive!” It was “one for the record books” Pops said, a day to remember.

My dad would always tell me how proud he was of me. “You went to college and started a business son. I just worked in the shop.” Of course, he and my mom were the reason I did any of that. It was their sacrifice and support that facilitated it all. So, it always bothered me that he didn’t think what he did was all that big of a deal. Well now he had been validated in a dramatic fashion. Not only did his work matter, but it also mattered all over the world, and through the decades.

So now he knew what I always wanted him to know. He, and all the other men and women who toiled on the line to build the gleaming American Dreams that rolled out of the factories did important work. World changing work. Most would not have the good fortune to meet a fan club from China, but I am so extremely glad Pops did. It made a sad time a lot happier, and it became a memory we spoke of often. I can hardly tell the story now without getting emotional, and that is a good thing. Because we only get emotional about things that matter. Pops work mattered.

Ultimately, I believe it is a collective saga with a unique individual story embedded for all who contributed at any level. It’s the softer side of the cold steel, rubber, and glass that make up the American automotive story. But perhaps it is the one we ought to remember most.

Our Pops, Gary G. “Big Gary” Fisher passed away unexpectedly on February 19, 2023. His toughness, belief in hard work, and pride in doing the job right every time is a legacy, we hold dear and aspire to emulate. He loved his family, his Buick stories, Flint history, and his “East Side Gang.” We miss him dearly.

*The company started in Detroit with founder David Buick but didn’t go into actual production until moving to Flint.

Gary L. Fisher


Genesee County Historical Society

Big Gary building Buick Rivieras in 1962

Big Gary outside of the old Buick Factory before it was torn down

Big Gary and Little Gary

Big Gary at Back to the Bricks Main Event

To learn more about the Genesee County Historical Society Click HERE

Al's Garage

Al’s Garage

Vol. 4, Issue #4

"Traveling the backroads of America"

The title of this month’s issue of ‘Al’s Garage’ should serve as a hint what this month’s issue is about. My wife suggested ‘why not take US-41 back home instead of taking I-75’. In the past we have traveled I-75 to Florida more times than I have fingers and toes. My reply was ‘why not’!

Gathering up road maps for the state of Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, and Indiana, we highlighted US-41 with a yellow marker. Having driven ‘41’ in Florida many times, we drove I-75 up to Lake City, Florida which is about fifty-miles south of the state line with Georgia. Once we exited the freeway onto ‘41’ we were greeted by a highway that was not traveled much and in terrific condition. Passing through small towns and a lot of rural countryside, the drive was relaxing. The speed limit, for the most part, was 55 MPH via the entire route. The only times we made an exception to not follow ‘41’ was in Atlanta and Indianapolis. As for Chattanooga and Nashville, we followed ‘41’ straight thru the heart of the cities. You might be asking yourself how long is US-41? The highway runs from Copper Harbor, Michigan all the way to Miami, Florida. In its heyday, it was the major highway between the Midwest and the deep south. I-75 construction bypassed most of the small towns that ‘41’ went through. We found in Georgia and Tennessee ‘75’ and ‘41’ run parallel to each other, and if a decision to get back on I-75 were made, one could do so with relative ease.

Once we arrived in Evansville, Indiana, we made the decision to take I-69 the rest of the way home. Our reasoning was ‘41’ traveled north along the Indiana and Illinois state line and into Wisconsin and then into the upper peninsula of Michigan. All and all, it was a relaxing drive home and the two of us saw a lot of rural countryside. Stopping at a few antique shops along the way and having dinner at small town diners made the trip back home more enjoyable. Making that decision to take ‘41’ back home, we did a lot more travel time as we anticipated slower speed limits. Good roads with lower speed limits allowed the two of us to see just a little bit more of America and the memories are now etched into our minds forever.

Why do I want to relate this to you? The 13th Annual Back to the Bricks® Promo Tour is coming up fast. Traveling with likeminded collector car enthusiasts is a wonderful way to travel and, even more important, is experiencing great fellowship, rural routes, small towns, and fantastic collection of collector cars. There is still time to register for the tour as May 1st is the cut-off date for registration. Even if you only register for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, you will get a feel for the importance of touring the backroads of America.

We are not getting any younger, and I am not of the mindset of saving my car for the next owner to enjoy. Keeping our cars in good driving condition is most likely the thing that holds back owners from taking their prized possession on long tours, not to mention concerns about stone chips and breakdowns. That is a story for another day! Hoping to see you down the road.

Keep on Rollin'

Al Hatch

Founder of the Back to the Bricks® 

Chairman Emeritus

Remember me???

Hey everyone,


It has been a few months since I contributed to the newsletter, not because I didn't have anything to say, but it seems each month we have more and more to share. So, I don't want to bore you with my stories or "Don't forget to register" topics. HOWEVER, if I went one more month without writing I think they would send out an SOS. I absolutely giggle when my email notification goes off, "Where are you?" "Why am I not seeing your article," or even better, "What have you done with Peyton?" This truly gives me joy and makes me feel loved and supported, thank you.

So, here's my update. I am still here. HA! Working behind the scenes at times, trying my best to support the various committees, tend to the marketing needs, events planning, Board of Directors, work hard on networking more about us in our community, doing various presentations, building stronger relationships with our partners and sponsors, making BIG PLANS for this year and next year, and most of all, just enjoying my life and job every day. I am honored to be in this position, and any of my friends will testify to you, I eat, sleep and breathe this job.

Although my biggest joy and blessing is of course my mini me Peyton. She is signed up for…hold your hats here people…DRIVERS TRAINING!!! Watch out everyone, she will be driving Big Red before we all know it. She is getting ready for her end of the year, and just informed me last night, “So did you know I am still going to miss my last day of 9th grade?” I of course said, “And you are SOOO upset about that right?” She smiled and said, “No way!” I am fairly sure my daughter loves my job as much as I do, and to me that’s a WIN. How fun is it that she gets to learn from all of you? She listens and looks up things that you tell her. She absolutely loves history and is reading college level history books, for fun! If you ever want to get her going, talk to her about any of the wars our country has been in, planes and of course talk about the inventions that changed the world. She is a google expert and loves to tell me things I have never even thought about. She for sure is a hard working volunteer. Probably because I volun-TELL her to work. But I know she gets more out of each experience than she initially thought she would going into it.

With Dust ‘em Off coming up, I can’t begin to tell you, my excitement. Already over 900 cars registered! Yahoo! The upcoming Promo Tour has been pretty busy with book work, and marketing, but it’s all coming together nicely. The 70th Anniversary party, June 30th celebrating the Corvette is going to be an awesome event. Just this week we sat with one of our Sponsors, Scooters Bar & Grill, and we made some fun plans for that day to include a Lunch Buffet Cruise-In from 12pm – 3pm. Then off to a Ribbon Cutting, additional stops to other sponsors, then at 5pm cruise into the event for a Car Show, Special Display, Music, Vendors, Food Trucks, Concert and More! Stay tuned, more details will be announced soon!

Well, that’s all for now. I am always here for you. Let me know if you need anything, and I hope you are registered for the Promo Tour, we can’t WAIT to hit the road June 9th

Amber Lynn Taylor, CTA

Executive Director

Back to the Bricks®


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