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Miniature gas station on display

October 10, 2013
A piece of Grosse Pointe Park’s history is on display in the municipal building.

Harper Woods resident Ron Konopka’s 1/24 inch to scale diorama of the old Standard Oil service station can be seen through October.

The 36-inch-by-24-inch balsa wood and foam board diorama was built in three months in 2012 at his winter home in Phoenix.

An avid bicycle rider, Konopka said he chose this building because it had been abandoned for years and he was afraid it would be torn down, However, it has been refurbished to a restaurant.

He chose the year 1959 to capture the gas station at the height of its business. The diorama has white walls to resemble bricks and added a red roof and blue accents. To simulate the activity of the station, Konopka has included a 1959 Chevrolet Impala, a 1949 Ford convertible and coupe and two females are sitting in a 1929 Mercedes waiting at the gas pumps. There are also an office, customers and attendants.

Konopka’s attention to detail is shown in the weathered cars in the display and the building’s octagonal tower and the original red lighting fixtures.

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