South to Alberta (a.k.a. Sid’s trip down memory lane)

Fun fact: Elvis Presley drove a 1958 red MGA, just like this one, in Blue Hawaii.

During Sid’s trip down memory lane in Lethbridge, Alberta, he also visited the small community of Warner, Alberta. Warner was once a place Sid had called home (for nearly 15 years). Sid had moved with his family to Warner: “to work for the County of Warner, and then I owned the pool hall, grocery station and the Texaco gas station,” he reminisces.

Sid became known throughout those parts as a resourceful man, as well as one of the most talented restoration mechanics in southern Alberta. This past fall, Sid stayed with his family at a friend’s home in the quaint town. The house was built in the 1800s and was fully restored. We arrived at night and could see only stars for miles across the snow-covered farmlands.

Although they had not seen me since I was a child, Van and Debi welcomed us with open arms. I asked Sid how he first met Van. “Years ago, when I first moved there, I saw a guy in a Ford ’57 Ranchero and caught up with him and had a chat. It was because of the cars.

“He had a bunch of old cars and I had a bunch of old cars.” That evening the long-time friends spoke about their recent projects and past finds. Van invited the guys—and me—to his garage, only to discover a treasure trove inside.

The walls and ceilings of the barn-shaped garage were lined with car memorabilia, as well as movie posters and ’80s beach-babe calendars. There was a large Yukon flag at the far back, “I gave him that flag when we moved back to Yukon,” Sid reflects with joy. My eyes instantly drew up to the massive collection of tiled shiny chrome hubcaps. “I gave him my collection of hubcaps when we moved back to Yukon, too. There’s hundreds of them, never did count them.”

Distracted by hubcaps, I found the five men crouched, ducked under and kneeling down to look at every aspect of Van’s numerous vehicles. And boy, did he have lots! There was a cream-coloured ’36 Ford, a blue ’34 Ford Coupe with it’s curvy fenders, a ’72 Chevy truck and a 1940s travel trailer.

Sid caught the shopping bug, while we visited Van and the Lethbridge Swap Meet, and decided he could not leave Alberta without a vehicle. “I’ve always wanted an MGA for many, many years because they’re hard to find. We found the ‘58 online at a shop in Grande Prairie and I had it shipped to Yukon. It was fully restored and at a decent price.”

I asked Sid what “MGA” stood for. “‘A’ is the model and ‘MG’ stands for Morris Group … it’s British. They made lots of models; this one is an Indie English sports car, two-door convertible. Tourists love to take photos with it.” Visit Sid and his little red MGA in Beaver Creek this summer!

Leave a Comment

Scroll to Top