Qualicum couple has a passion for rebuilding cars

Ken and Linda Thomas are getting ready for the June 17 Show and Shine in Qualicum Beach

One of the classic vehicles on display at the Seaside Cruizer’s the Father’s Day Show ‘n Shine will be a 1967 raspberry red Beaumont lovingly polished by Ken Thomas of Parksville.

To say that Thomas is enthusiastic about collecting vintage cars is an understatement.  His wife Linda warned me before I started talking cars with him that it would be hard to get him to stop.

Boy, she was right.

Thomas has been car crazy for a long time.

“Ever since I was a wee tadpole,” he confessed.

Thomas grew up on a farm in Port Alberni where his dad encouraged him to tinker with the farm vehicles.

“With 240 acres you could drive wherever you wanted.  That’s how I learned how to drive … on a tractor.”

When he had an accident with his first car and went to the body shop, he started collecting car parts. That’s when his obsession with re-building cars began.

“Back then I had at least three vehicles on the go.  I was young and working at the pulp mill.  I started gathering toys and have been doing it ever since,” he said.

Thomas belongs to the Canadian Classic Chevelles & Beaumonts Club which is dedicated to supporting owners of the vintage vehicles.

The club is open to all Beaumonts from 1962 to 1969, Chevelles from 1964 to 1983 and El Caminos and GMC derivatives from 1959 to 1987.

Thomas and his wife will be bringing their two Beaumonts to the Father’s Day Show ‘n Shine in Qualicum Beach.

At a car show last year in Wenatchee Washington, their 1967 raspberry pearl metallic colored Beaumont won the award for favorite foreign car.

As most car collectors know, over the years Detroit built specific models for Canada.  They didn’t sell them in the U.S. so the Canuck-mobiles really get attention at shows south of the border.  The Pontiac Beaumont is a dead ringer for the Chevelle of the same era except for the trim.

Thomas can tell you the difference between each model from the placement of the tail lights, the difference between the dash boards and the grills.

He said although they won the trophy last summer, that’s not why he enters the car shows.

“It is a social event.  I do like dash plaques.  I have quite a collection.”

He added that walking around drooling over other people’s cars is also part of the attraction.

After all these years the avid car collector acknowledged there is always something to tinker with and he is still tweaking his 1966 Beaumont along with a few other roadsters he has in his collection.

As for selling his his nostalgic wheels, Thomas said he prefers to collect them.

“To me, sell is a four letter word … buy is much better,” he exclaimed.


Just Posted

The proposed running track upgrade at Ballenas Secondary is now on course. (PQB News file photo)
RDN: Parksville track upgrade project gains some traction

Staff recommends board approve $204,000 funding

The total earnings of Town of Qualicum Beach council and mayor amounted to $186,649 in 2020, including expenses. (Town of Qualicum Beach photo)
Nine Qualicum Beach town employees earned more than $100K in 2020

Mayor and council received earnings totalling $186,649

(PQB News file photo)
Fireworks report highlights enforcement challenges for Regional District of Nanaimo

Director: ‘I just think it’s wasting everybody’s time’

Terry Mazzei next to a truck after it was struck by lightning, with him inside, on Wednesday afternoon, June 9. He walked away from the incident without injury and the truck sustained only mild damage; a blown front tire and newly broken gas gauge. (Wendy Mazzei photo)
Nanoose Bay man walks away unscathed after lightning strike

VIDEO: ‘We like to think that his dad was watching over him’

Douglas Holmes, current Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District chief administrative officer, is set to take on that position at the Regional District of Nanaimo come late August. (Submitted photo)
Regional District of Nanaimo’s next CAO keen to work on building partnerships

Douglas Holmes to take over top administrator role with RDN this summer

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Premier John Horgan speaks as provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, right, and health minister Adrian Dix look on during a press conference to update on the province’s fall pandemic preparedness plan during a press conference from the press theatre at Legislature in Victoria, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. officials to provide details on Step 2 of COVID reopening plan Monday

Step 2 could allow for larger gatherings and a resumption of recreational travel

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Most Read