Francis Hetherington - Owner - Sunshine Auto Garage
Photo of Herbie taken 6/5/2015 by Sarasota Herald-Tribune.
Camera shy Norman enjoys surfing and VW's, but not necessarily in that order. He loves talking VW's when you visit the shop & will also give you a tour. If you ask, he might just take a photo of you with one of the many VW's here. Maybe you can sneak him in a photo too! His friendly & super-posivie attitude helps make Sunshine Auto Garage a FUN place to visit & work!
Enjoy the music jukebox on each page while you check out the SUNSHINE website!
We're often told the shop has never looked better and some of those old VW's from years past still remain
here at the shop, along with many new arrivals. These days they're given much more love and attention than ever before, and most are used for storage rather than being stripped down for parts so perhaps they can someday be saved, restored and put back on the road...
"No VW should ever die"!
Jeff's positive attitude, enthusiasm, and attention to detail - along with extensive experience in a variety of automotive work - means you're ride is in good hands here at Sunshine Auto Garage! When he's not hiding inside - or under a VW - he'll always find time to chat with you about all things VW.... And he's even been known to play shop tour guide for our local & out of town visitors!
Say HELLO to our Repair & Restoration man, Jeff Harthoorn!
Sunshine Auto Garage started when I walked away from my secure Management position of 8-years at a Corporate owned, local mega-plex 20-screen movie theater to buy Rick's VW Repair as Rick was retiring. Rick's original location was located on US-41 behind Sound-Waves Car Audio, my old stereo shop, and knowing Rick personally made the purchase of Rick's VW Repair feel right. The shop was pretty much an automotive junk yard by 2004 when I purchased it, but my vision to bring it back to life had begun.
The shop reminded me of a scene from the movie "Herbie Fully Loaded" where poor Herbie was dropped off
at a "Crazy Dave's" junk yard and left for scrap. Talk about a VW with a fun-filled past feeling under appreciated!
But don't worry!
Those days of "junk yard" atmosphere here at the shop are gone and #53 Herbie is back here and doing just fine! Stop by and see him anytime, he's usually parked out front & he loves the attention!
There were over 150-VW's with trees and weeds growing out of them, fire ant hills 3-feet high, and many stripped cars - abandoned and left for dead - in a true automotive junk yard. It was a depressing sight for any classic VW or auto enthusiast.
Norman the multi-tasker keeps Sunshine Auto Garage looking great!
It was a long road from Rick's VW Repair to Sunshine Auto Garage.
VW parts, service & restoration
Cleaning up the yard and distressed shop was a serious challenge!