Model T Jamboree drives into Marietta | News, Sports, Jobs

Jim and Sylvi Caporale, Marietta residents and business owners, stand with their restored 1923 Ford Model T. The couple will be participating in the 2022 All Ohio Model T Jamboree today through Sunday. (Photo by Ryan Holter)

Beginning today and running through the weekend, the streets of downtown Marietta may look like a scene from the past with the arrival of approximately 80 antique automobiles from the earliest years of the Ford Motor Co.

The 2022 All Ohio Model T Jamboree is a gathering of old cars touring the Mid-Ohio Valley for three days, and onlookers will observe an event in its 33rd year.

Along with a variety of visiting car owners, the event will also feature at least one local couple, Jim and Sylvi Caporale — longtime Marietta residents and shop owners on Front Street — who will see their own antique returned to life and driven after resting 10 years in their garage.

They have decided to unveil their gem as the event is underway because their own restoration story is a triumphant one with a myriad of underlying themes such as friendship building and the much-appreciated support from other local businesses and antique car enthusiasts – much like the car community that is gathering for this year’s Jamboree.

The Caporales, owners of American Flag & Pole at 276 Front St., were waiting to see if their fire engine-red 1923 Ford Model T would crank-over. The couple’s excitement was not radiating from their own garage, but from a garage down the street Cole’s Tire & Supply at 205 Greene St. The shop’s own mechanics have been instrumental in lending a helping hand, and they have done so with great enthusiasm, Sylvi said.

Sylvi Caporale gently slides the drivers seat into its proper resting place of the 1923 Ford Model T owned by herself and her husband, Jim. (Photo by Ryan Holter)

The Caporales spent their time prior to the start attempt analyzing the finer details — fluids, leaded gasoline and a little trouble-shooting. As a final touch, Sylvi mounted a shiny-metallic fire extinguisher on the passenger side of the Model T, although that was not a mandated safety precaution.

“We bought it 10 years ago just yesterday (Wednesday),” Jim said, referring to the extinguisher.

Sylvi added, “We bought it from the fire department down in Charlotte, N.C.”

Herb De la Porte and his wife Sheila, from Elyria, Ohio, were in Marietta on Thursday to participate in the Jamboree along with the Caporales, their friends since 2019.

“And that’s what (this annual event) does.” Sheila said of the way the Jamboree brings friends together. “It’s like these ripples go out. You don’t know where these ripples will go nor how they will return.”

Herb’s own pristine 1915 Model T was parked Thursday alongside the building of Cole’s Tire & Supply awaiting the Jamboree which will feature antique cars rolling throughout the Mid-Ohio Valley through Sunday. Model Ts were built between 1908 and 1927.

The love and attention given to Herb’s restoration is a level above his best mechanical advice, which he gives in jest: “If it moves, squirt it. And if the (car parts) should move, then squirt it. And if it shouldn’t move then put some duct tape on it.”

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