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                            History of the Ark-La-Tex Packard Club
Ark-La-Tex
Ark-La-Tex
One evening in June of 1998, while at the National Packard meet in League City,
Texas, Wendall Spreadbury and William Villyard discussed the possibility of a
new regional Packard Club. Wendall, who had founded two regional vintage car
clubs (AACA and Hudson/Essex/Terraplane) and had become president of both,
did not think there were enough old Packards or people interested in Packards
in East Texas  to form a viable club. As such, he knew of the difficulties
presented by a low population density area in forming even a multi-marque club,
much less a single marque organization. However, William was so convincing the
two decided to work on the project despite the odds against success. On
December 5,1998, together with several very enthusiastic and vastly
experienced Packardphiles, they met at the Spreadbury home in Nacogdoches.
By the time of that meeting, Wendall had drafted a set of bylaws; had carried on
a series of telephone  and written communications with William H. Weltyk, VP of
regions of PAC; had obtained the necessary documents for a regional
application; had established a name for a proposed Packard region; and
gleaned blessings from Jim Hollingsworth of North Texas Packards, together with
those of Dan Woesner from Indian Territory Packards, and Wendell Hawkins
(the youngest ever and now oldest owner of a Packard Dealership) of Pelican
Packards for establishing a new Region within and near their boundaries. During
this first meeting, club officers were elected; all of the above documents were
approved for submission to PAC and the new region name, "Ark-La-Tex
Packards," was accepted. In quick succession thereafter, club member, Billy
Vaticalos, recommended the name, "Packard Power," for the club newsletter; a
new club membership application form with dues was adopted; a petition
for a regional charter and a PAC policy agreement with the region was signed
and sent to the PAC Headquarters. With the untiring efforts of founding
members like Gene Brewer and Nelson Bates, and later members like the
Bazzells, the McKnights, and the Van Osses, the Ark-La-Tex Packard Region
has developed into, and continues, as a small but vibrant organization for the
preservation of the great motor cars of the Packard Motor Car Company.
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