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story.lead_photo.caption Robert Bush wipes down his 1994 Corvette on Tuesday at the Arkansas Welcome Center near Mandeville, Ark., before leaving for Little Rock. Hundreds of Corvette enthusiasts will converge on the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Ky., to celebrate the museum's 25th anniversary. Photo by Hunt Mercier / Texarkana Gazette.

Eastbound drivers on I-30 heading in the direction of the Arkansas Welcome Center on Tuesday afternoon found they were surrounded by Corvettes.

A caravan of Corvette enthusiasts heading to a rendezvous at the welcome center, a stopping point for the Southern Texas Corvette Caravan. Hundreds of Corvettes, all traveling in the same direction, were on the road.

"This is 80% of registered members of Texas club Corvette enthusiasts," said Rick Creekmore, club captain. "There are more coming from the Central Texas Corvettes Club, but they will be traveling along a different route."

Corvette fans and owners from all over the country are converging upon The National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky. The members of the National Museum Corvette Caravan number about 7,000.

"The reason for this event is to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the NCM," Creekmore said. "This is the largest nonprofit car museum organization in the world, we believe."

The NCM, based purely around the Corvette, is about celebrating Chevrolet's classic car that originated in 1953 and is still produced today.

"Most Corvette fans prefer vintage," Creekmore said. "I do own a modern one, but I also own a '64."

Creekmore said the two most famous and desired eras for the Corvette are C1, which is from 1953 to 1962, and C2, which is from 1962 to 1967.

"Come together for the cars, stay for the people," said Caravan member Leah Wyckoff, whose husband is a driver and owner of Corvettes.

Wyckoff mingled with the gathered Corvette fans, who continued arriving at the travel center Tuesday afternoon.

"My husband has been a Corvette owner and fan for 10 years, but truth is, I like them as well," she said. "It is a driver's car, not complicated, and drives really smooth."

"We are one of the major donors for St. Jude's Ranch for Children," Caravan member Kay Weber said.

St Jude's Ranch for Children is a San Antonio shelter for neglected and abused children.

"We've been supporting St. Jude's for 20 years," Caravan member Lyn Blum said. "We love it that we can help, do events for the children."

The major fundraising event for St. Jude's is the Texas Corvette Association Open Car Show in Boerne, Texas, in April, during Fiesta, an event in San Antonio.

"We are the only event associated with the Fiesta that doesn't take place in San Antonio, the only non-San Antonio event sanction for the festival held outside," Blum said.

The event at the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green will be all about Corvettes.

"Vette culture, lectures, activities, seminars, shows, displays, even laps around a track, all that and more will be going on," Blum said.

Though the 441 drivers and passengers milled about their 230 Corvettes in conviviality, there was a restlessness. They had an urge to be on the road again, continuing east to Little Rock, which would be their last stop before Kentucky.

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