2006 New England GTO Meets
The '06 New England GTO meet took place on May 21, at Brenton State Park in Newport, Rhode Island. This event was conceived by Massachusetts State Trooper Michael Kleiner (aka TprGTO) on the Web site LS1/LS2GTO.com, of which all the attending GTO owners are members.
The '06 event was spectacular, with around 55 late-model ('04-'06) GTOs. There were also a couple of older GTOs, a few Corvettes, and even a hot Toyota Camry (because one member's GTO was in the body shop). Headcount was in excess of 100, with members making the trek from Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, and as far away as New Jersey. All had a good time and the attendance for this event was almost double that of last year's outing.
Late-model GTOs converged on the Rhode Island coastline, which provided spectacular views and weather-a welcome surprise after two weeks of nonstop rain. There were as many bone-stock GTOs as there were modified ones. Exterior mods included the factory-optional GTO Sport Appearance Package, Auto-X grilles, ram-air hoods, custom paint work, and wide 18- or 19-inch rims and tires. Power adders and drivetrain upgrades could be found in many of the GTOs as well, such as an STS turbo GTO, Magnacharged GTOs, camshaft swaps, CAIs, every bolt-on imaginable, and even a couple of GTOs with their engines on fire-fuel-rail covers painted true-flame by Stryker, one of the site members.
Owners parked in the single-row parking lot, with Goats as far as the eye could see in either direction up and down the coast. The group of GTOs sidetracked many state-park onlookers away from the usual breathtaking views of the ocean and the massive multi-colored kites that were flying overhead. In fact, there was as much color and glimmer on the ground as there was in the sky and on the water, with almost every stock GTO color represented.
Presentations were held during the cookout, including a raffle by a favorite Web-site sponsor, Tbyrne Motorsports, which provided generous gift certificates to lucky winners. The highlight of the meet, however, was a heartfelt presentation made to Ryan Angerami, a very special member of the New England Goat Herd. The LS1/LS2GTO.com Web site has been online since the new GTOs became available in late 2003, and Ryan (aka City Goat) has been a site member since Oct. 14, 2004, although he did not own a GTO. Unfortunately, his age, income (student), and insurance rates all prohibited him from acquiring his dream, but that didn't curtail him from being a fantastic contributing member of the group. Through every one of Ryan's unbelievable 4,000 posts on the forums, this affable young man always stayed positive and optimistic that one day he too would acquire his own Goat.
Just a few short weeks prior to this meet, Ryan graduated from school, got a good job, and finally realized that dream. He proudly appeared at the meet driving his very own pristine '04 YellowJacket GTO and wearing a smile from ear to ear. The members had to congratulate Ryan somehow, so they presented him with a T-shirt saying "4,000 posts on LS1GTO.com and all I got was this lousy GTO." Welcome to the herd, Ryan!
The meet concluded with almost all of the Goats taking a cruise along the breathtaking coast and the famous mansions in Newport. (The ballroom dance scene in Arnold Schwarzenegger's action movie True Lies was filmed at one of these mansions.) Our rumbling, muscular GTO conga line garnered a lot of the attention from mansion visitors.
But this was not the last late-model GTO event of 2006 for this group of diehards.
On Saturday, September 30, 2006, at the Moodus Sportsman's club in East Haddam, Connecticut, the New England Goat Herd came together again for its annual Fall meet. Planned by Nic Damuck (aka WEDJ), approximately 30 '04-'06 GTOs were present, and members came from Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, and Rhode Island. Attendees partook of steak and lobster, and participated in a raffle, horseshoes, a GTO cruise, a group photo, and a good time. The Pontiac Arrowhead shoot (lead photo) was a last-minute idea pulled together by the author with design of the final photo by Ryan Angerami.
If interested in attending future GTO meets or for more information on the '04-'06 GTO, visit the Web site at www.ls1gto.com.

Photo Gallery: 2006 New England GTO Meets - High Performance Pontiac Magazine

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