The four previous garden parties held to show off Jim Ratsoy’s classic car collection have raised more than $1 million for seniors care through the Rosewood Manor Care Foundation.
When Jim Ratsoy holds a garden party at his south Richmond home, it represents a trip back in time like no other for those attending.
The classic cars and trucks from two huge buildings on his property are displayed on the lawns with visitors mingling amongst the fully restored vehicles of the past from what may be Canada’s largest private collection.
There will be approximately 125 vehicles on display along with the classic cars that are driven to the event parked in rows by valet attendants. The hundreds of people expected to attend on Sunday will sit down to a gourmet meal at an afternoon and evening of live music and entertainment among the cars and an amazing collection of jukeboxes and priceless music machines dating from the early part of the last century. These include player pianos and an automated orchestra from 1931 that once played in a Belgian dance hall.
The four previous garden party events have raised more than a million dollars for seniors care in Richmond through the Rosewood Manor Care Foundation. Last year, entry ticket sales and the auction sale of hundreds of dollars of merchandise, gifts and professional services donated by local businesses sold through a live auction brought in $625,000 for the foundation.
Jim and Marcia Ratsoy had built their home and buildings on Gilbert road to house the amazing collection of vehicles and musical memorabilia from the past. Over the years, hundreds of people including classic car club members have been hosted by the Ratsoys. The Rosewood Manor Garden Party Extravaganza is an extension of that hospitality with the public invited to attend by purchasing tickets and donating money to local seniors, Alzheimer’s and dementia care a worthwhile cause that many may need some day.
Those attending will experience an amazing event showcasing some of the rarest classic cars in existence. Among the vehicles to be displayed is a Cadillac convertible with a V12 engine that was built on January 15, 1931 for a new car show in a Chicago hotel. Jim Ratsoy bought the car along with a rare 1948 wood-bodied Chrysler Town and Country convertible from a St. Louis shoe manufacturer who had been forced to liquidate his assets by a strike..
Another rare car to be displayed is a 1932 Ford Phaeton convertible that was part of the collection owned by a man who died in an airplane crash. Ratsoy purchased an equally rare 1934 Plymouth coupe convertible at an auction in Las Vegas. It had been perfectly restored.
Jim Ratsoy has his own restoration facilities and has restored many cars. An example is the top of the line 1960 Buick Electra 225 convertible with a stunning red leather interior. After looking for years for an Austin pickup truck, Ratsoy tracked one of these rare trucks down in Oregon. “It was out in the bush and the roof was all caved in,” Ratsoy recalls. “We had to replace the aluminum box that had turned into powder and that required building a whole new one.”
His collection includes Ford convertibles from almost every year through the 1930s, 1940s and into the early 1950s.
A feature is a red 1951 Ford convertible which is the same as the first new car Jim Ratsoy owned.
Tickets for the 5th annual Rosewood Manor Garden Party are $250 each and can be purchased by calling Rosewood Manor at 604 271-3590, extension 123