The Tin Militia Car Club out of the Northern Chicago area had a great idea a few years ago, which was to road trip to Kentucky to see all the different distilleries that were located in the Louisville, Kentucky area. They kicked around the idea for a couple of years, but after talking with the crew that run Beatersville, they figured out a way to combine the two passions the Tin Militia is known for, which is whiskey and driving their cars.
The first year of organizing the Bourbon Blitzkrieg Run was a bit of a logistical headache. Mitch Huffington spent hours lining up all the details for exclusive access to historic distilleries.
All the hard work paid off and the initial run was very popular with those that were in attendance. The word about the good times, great scenery, and camaraderie permeated throughout several Midwest hot rod enthusiasts and just this past year, the event grew to over 100 participants in 60 vintage rides, a total that was almost double from the previous year!
The Bourbon Blitzkrieg Run (BBR) is definitely an event designed to drive your prized ride. The average person on the run drives 1,100 miles round trip to be a part of the Blitzkrieg! Keep in mind that the average price for a gallon of gas is $3.70. So it’s easy to see that the participants are dedicated to this run.
This year the following states were represented on the Bourbon Blitzkrieg Run: Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, and Kentucky. In attempts to change the route and locations, the Tin Militia decided to try the western region. The distilleries included on this run are the Limestone Branch Distillery, Willett Distillery, Makers Mark, Barton Distillery, and Jim Beam.
Not only did each distillery give each person on the tour some cool memorabilia, but they also awarded a distillery pick for one of the lucky BBR members. The main aspect of this run is to drive the vehicles through the back roads of Kentucky. This does not come without some drama and since these are old cars, there are always some issues with keeping the cars rolling down the road.
This year, there were some issues which included two fuel pumps (replaced with electric pumps for a 50s Caddy and Ford Flathead), two starters, a battery, a blown air bag, a coil, an alternator, and two busted alternator brackets that needed to be welded up during the run. Luckily, one of the participants brought his shop truck and was able to do this on the fly.
This group of gear heads don’t mind the temporary setbacks because more often than not, this is the opportunity to get acquainted with a fellow gear head.
The 2014 BBR saw representatives from the following car clubs be part of the BBR: Tin Militia CC, Piston Jammers, Bourbon Trail Bombers, The Metal Mafia, Ace’s Car Club Milwaukee, Summer Knights, Strombergs CC, Romin’ Chariots, Romin’ Chariettes, Speedshifters, Wheels of Time, White Knuckles, The Instigators, The Burnouts, VooDoo Kings, Road Kings, and the Retarded Sparks.
Overall, it was a great time and there are already plans to make it happen again next year. If you are curious to learn more about the Bourbon Blitzkrieg Run, visit their website here.
Written By: John Wells
Photography: Alfonso Monroy and Zak Jokela