DEFEND YOUR RIDE: Murray At Oakdale Theater

September 4, 2012 5:00 AM

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“My association with Oakdale, via my wife, is extremely unique.”

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“She owns the car, but I have a right to ride in it.”

The Ride
The Driver: Murray
Car in Question: 2011 Chrysler 200
Spotted at: Oakdale Theater, 95 South Turnpike Road, Wallingford, CT 06492
Odometer: 160

THE DEFENSE

Q: Hi Murray! Great car. When did you buy it?

A: We got this new car just two months ago. I restricted the cars to only American cars. I didn’t want any imports because I felt that our corporate entities could benefit from the profit staying in America. The only car I would have made an exception for was Italy for a Ferrari.

Q: Who’s the “we” you mentioned?

A: My wife and I. It was a corporate thing. She owns the car, but I have a right to ride in it. <laughing> She fell in love with the color the minute she saw it in the light blue. It’s sort of stimulating.

Q: Where do you most often find yourself driving the car?

A: We have four cars. We have three cars in Connecticut, one of which is 65 years old. Then we have a station wagon in Florida. So the use of a car, when you spread it over that many cars, is not very extensive.

Q: Wow, you have a 65-year-old car? Tell us about that one.

A: I have a car that I bought the first week I came out of the army, which was a ’55 Ford Touring car. It was in perfect shape and it cost me $100. The car now has somewhat deteriorated and needs some work on it, but it’s still quite valuable. I’d say it’s worth about $30,000, no problem at all. It’s all original.

Q: Would you ever consider selling it as an antique?

A: I couldn’t because I’ve already consigned it to my son. I had a ’48 Studebaker that I sold. That was another collector’s before this. Jointly, I had two old cars at one time.

Q: We’re here right now at Oakdale. What is its significance to you?

A: My association with Oakdale, via my wife, is probably extremely unique. My wife was an owner of the original Oakdale arrangement with her cousin Ben Segal, the producer, the promoter and the creator of Oakdale Theater. We had an enviable relationship, which meant that we met the stars and entertained the stars. We had them at our home for parties. Many times we would go to a sold out show and not only have access to the show, but have access to special seating. Those are things that made the arrangement that we had with Ben Segal and the theater just incredibly luxurious and rewarding. It lasted for probably 20-someodd years of Oakdale’s early existence.

Q: What happened after that?

A: Ben’s son took over and there wasn’t that kind of rapport between Louise, my wife and Ben’s son. There was a change in the management, a change in the conditions, a change in the ingredient and then there came this enormous effort to enlarge and add to the prestige of the theater. It became a five thousand-seat, instead of a two thousand-seat theater.

Photos and interview by Benjamin Shanbrom

View previous Defend Your Ride features as well as other great stories for people who love cars at CBSConnecticut.com/Autos

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