Since Dec. 1, Reilly Ouwerling has been cruising around South Surrey and White Rock with a Christmas tree – lights and all – strapped to the roof of his 1992 Buick Roadmaster Estate Wagon. (Contributed photo)

South Surrey teen spruces up vehicle for holiday season

Elgin Park Secondary’s Reilly Ouwerling has lit Christmas tree strapped to roof of his 1992 Buick

When most people want to show off their holiday spirit, they decorate their homes.

Elgin Park Secondary student Reilly Ouwerling decided to spruce up his car, instead.

Since Dec. 1, the 17-year-old has been catching more than a few looks from passersby, thanks to the fully-lit Christmas tree that he has strapped to the roof of his 1992 Buick Roadmaster Estate Wagon.

A car buff who is aiming for a career in the auto body field, Ouwerling already owned another Buick wagon – a white 1996 – and originally planned to use his wood-paneled ’92 as a parts car. But plans changed when he realized how much his new purchase resembled the family wagon driven by Chevy Chase in the National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation movie, and decided to rig up the lighting – through a power inverter plugged into the car’s cigarette lighter – in an homage to the popular holiday film.

“I’ve kind of fallen in love with this one, so I thought I would just do something kind of festive and cool with it for the winter,” he said.

“It gets lots of looks, lots of thumbs up. I was just dropping my friend off at the airport today and there was a guy in the truck next to me, hanging out the window giving me a thumbs up with a huge smile on his face.”

Fixing up vehicles is nothing new for the teen. Last year, he split his Grade 11 school year between Elgin Park Secondary and Vancouver City College, where he started an auto body apprenticeship. That same year, at the urging of one of his instructors, he entered the Skills BC competition, where he won gold for his auto body and paint work. From there, he moved on to the Skills Canada national event in Halifax, where he won bronze.

As for what might happen to his festive cruiser once the holidays are over, Ouwerling was non-committal, saying he’s “not 100 per cent sure yet,” if he’ll keep it or his other similar – but less merry and bright – set of wheels.



editorial@peacearchnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Cloverdale businessman funds wells in Cambodia

Revive Washing in Clayton Heights donates three per cent of profits to charity

Fraser Valley Regional Library branches offer curbside pick up

After two and a half months of being closed, people can once again check books out of the library

Surrey addictions officials say pandemic funding is wreaking havoc on those in recovery

Governments’ kindness taking its toll, recovery operators say

B.C. government releases designs for new Pattullo Bridge

Project expected to cost $1.377 billion, completed by end of 2023

11 new COVID-19 cases in B.C. as top doc urges caution amid ‘encouraging’ low rates

Dr. Bonnie Henry also announced that two care home outbreaks would be declared over

Dr. Bonnie Henry announces official ban on overnight kids’ camps this summer

New ban comes after talking with other provincial health officials across the country, Henry says

Senior man in hospital after unprovoked wolf attack near Prince Rupert

Conservation officers are on site looking for the wolf

VIDEO: NASA astronauts blast off into space on SpaceX rocket

Marks NASA’s first human spaceflight launched from U.S. soil in nearly a decade

Help the ‘Cloverdale Reporter’ continue its mission to provide trusted local news

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

‘I knew what he wanted’: Kootenay man spends hours in tree as black bear patrols below

Francis Levasseur is no stranger to the outdoors, but a recent run-in with a bear caused quite a scare

B.C.’s police watchdog probing death of Richmond man in alleged shoplifting incident

Independent Investigations Office of B.C. is asking any witnesses to come forward

PHOTOS: U.S. cities brace for increasing unrest over police killing of George Floyd

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz has fully mobilized the state’s National Guard

Aldergrove zoo to reopen with staff in masks, one-directional visitor experience to tackle COVID-19

Its June 1 reopening will be ushered in by words from Darryl Plecas, Legislative assembly Speaker

Most Read