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Car collection goes on the auction block

LAKEFIELD -- A treasure trove disguised as chrome and rust awaits the antique car collector at Mike Handzus' auction starting at 10 a.m. Saturday. Handzus is selling about 140 vehicles and parts at his home in rural Lakefield, including a Model-A...

LAKEFIELD -- A treasure trove disguised as chrome and rust awaits the antique car collector at Mike Handzus' auction starting at 10 a.m. Saturday.

Handzus is selling about 140 vehicles and parts at his home in rural Lakefield, including a Model-A and some Dodge Brothers pieces dating from 1918 to the 1930s.

"He has a street rodders' paradise out there," said auctioneer Yvette VanDerBrink. "They're all projects. None of them are running, but a lot of them are complete and would be good for restoration."

Handzus realized he had too many projects and not enough room in his sheds or time to finish them all, prompting him to contact VanDerBrink Auctions and organize a sale.

Dodge Brothers, Dodge and Chrysler cars make up the largest part of the Handzus collection, but there are also some Ford Model As and Model Ts, Chevrolets, Packards and even a few antique tractors from John Deere and McCormick.

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"He's got one vehicle in particular that we believe to be from 1927 that's a screen-side canopy truck," VanDerBrink said. "We can still read Luverne on the door,and it was a grocery store delivery truck. It's really unusual."

Handzus has been interested in cars and parts since he was a kid, when he helped make a dune buggy out of a 1948 Plymouth.

"I just kind of enjoyed working on them, and it kind of evolved from that," Handzus said.

Later he learned to drive in a Dodge.

"I thought they were pretty unique vehicles, they had a lot of neat features and unique design back then, and I kind of went with those," Handzus said.

VanDerBrink Auctions has been promoting the sale nationally since June. So far, potential buyers from England, Arkansas, Mississippi, Texas, Minnesota, Iowa and Illinois have expressed interest in the sale. The car portion of the auction will be broadcast on E-Bay.

"I invite everybody out. Coffee's on the house," Handzus said. "Come on over."

Handzus' farm, where the auction will take place, is located at 73833 Minnesota 86 in rural Lakefield.

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