Members of the Lone Star Packard Club visited Rosenberg on Saturday, and they drove their vintage automobiles.
The club, which comprises members who drive restored Packard automobiles, visits Rosenberg about once a year for lunch get-togethers.
A retired anesthesiologist, Jim Tagliabue, helped establish the club in 1964. The club is the third oldest region among Packard Clubs worldwide. There are about 60 Packard regions across the country plus another dozen or so internationally.
“Today, our membership is made up of a variety of folks,” said club member Ben Carter. “We have a doctor, a banker, a developer, several mechanics, executive assistant, church music minister, and about half a dozen retired public school teachers, someone from NASA, two retired police officers, and more. All kinds of people love Packards.”
The club has 57 pre-war Packards from 1909 to 1942 and 46 postwar Packards from 1947-1958.
“When we began, we were the only Packard group in Texas so we had members from all over the state and we called ourselves the Lone Star Region,” Carter recalled. “We have kept the name even though there are now three other Packard Club regions in Texas.”
Most of the Lone Star Packard Club’s members live in the greater Houston-Gulf Coast area.
“We try to move the monthly meetings around our membership area so the same people don’t have to drive a long distance each month. Carter, who lives in Richmond, is glad of that. His Packard struggled to make the 10-mile journey to Rosenberg,” he recalled with a chuckle. “It kept dying every time I stopped at a stop sign or red light. Fortunately, I had a good battery and was able to make it to the meetings and back home.”
The Baccaros and the Jordans have been in the club the longest.
The Baccaros joined in 1976. The Jordans were already members and Ron was the director at the time. Tommy Baccaro is presently president of the Lone Star Club. The club presently boasts about 55 families and well over 100 members. Altogether, club members have more than 113 Packards, either running or in various stages of restoration.
The club performs two public service events each year. One of them is the annual Keels and Wheels show in Seabrook, benefiting Today’s Harbor for Children, formally the Boys Harbor.
The club also shows its vehicles at nursing homes and puts on a show for the Marines’ Toys for Tots program in which admission to the car show is an unwrapped gift. The club also has shown its vehicles at Moody Gardens in Galveston to benefit local scouts and other groups.
The Lone Star Packard Club has hosted two national meetings. The first was in 1984 and it was held at the Shamrock Hilton Hotel in Houston.
“At that meeting, we were fortunate enough to have James J. Nance as our guest speaker,” Carter recalled. “Mr. Nance was the last president of the Packard Motor Car Co. and he unfortunately died two weeks after the meet. The second national meet we hosted was in 1998 and we used the South Shore Harbor Resort for our headquarters.”
The Lone Star Packard Club is co-founder of the annual Texas Packard Meet, held in Salado.
“People from not just Texas but all over the country come to this meet,” Carter said.
The 43rd annual Texas Packard Meet will be held in Salado from March 31-April 3, 2022.
The Lone Star Region will be the host region. For more information on the Packard clubs, or to see photos, go online to www.lonestarpackard. com