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May 26, 2013

News & Features

Auto-show season gears up with annual classics, new events

Special to NWautos

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Visitors to the 2012 Greenwood Auto Show took in hundreds of classic autos. (Sara Kennedy / NWautos staff)


All winter, thousands of collector cars in the Seattle area have been hibernating in garages and under protective covers. But that's about to change.

Passionate car collectors — and those who appreciate and enjoy looking at their hard work — will fill auto shows this spring and summer. Here are some highlights.

Greenwood Car Show
June 29, 8 a.m.-4 p.m.

The biggest single car show in the state, the Greenwood Car Show is renowned for its diversity and number of exotic vehicles.

A 20-year neighborhood mainstay, the free show is a Seafair-sanctioned event that covers 1.5 miles of Greenwood Avenue North in Seattle, between North 67th and North 90th streets.

Last year's show had more than 40 award categories, including Best Pre-World War I Convertible, Best Rat Rod and Best Work in Progress. If you're a casual fan, you're bound to find something that grabs your attention. If you're a die-hard enthusiast, June 29 is your Christmas.

Triple XXX shows
Ongoing

For car shows with a family-run feel, check out the ones held at Triple XXX Rootbeer Drive-in. The 1950s-themed diner, just off Interstate 90 in Issaquah, has been hosting shows since the 1980s. Dozens are scheduled between now and the end of the year.

If you like oddballs, you'll love the Old Tractors, Trucks, Wagons and Buses show on June 30. Fans of American classics won't want to miss the Northwest Classic Chevy Club '55-'56-'57 Chevy Show on Aug. 18. Corvettes take center stage Aug. 25 at the All Corvette Car Show.

And while you're there, treat your belly to thick chocolate shakes and enormous burgers from the diner.

LeMay — America's Car Museum

Car shows are going to be big at the new LeMay auto museum this summer. With a 3.5-acre outdoor show field in the shadow of Mount Rainier, the Tacoma site was designed to host auto shows as well as museum exhibits. Shows are scheduled almost every week; while some are private, many are open to the public, including those listed below.

• Cruise In events take place select Thursdays through September (rain or shine), 5-8 p.m. Have a cool car you want to show off? Looking for an excuse to gawk at collectibles? These casual gatherings are for collectors and enthusiasts alike.

The requirements are loose — as in none at all — so every event is expected to be different, and you never know who is going to show up. You may find a BMW next to a hot rod next to an old classic, says Scot Keller, chief marketing communications officer for the museum.

• The MEET -- A Vintage Motorcycle Festival Weekend is scheduled for Aug. 24, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Old-school motorcycles have their own event at the LeMay, and it goes way beyond wandering past rows of bikes. The festival also features a swap meet, seminars and demonstrations.

Entertainment and food vendors will be on site throughout the day. Non-member festival admission ($19.75) includes entry to the museum. The following day, LeMay sponsors an 80-mile ride around Mount Rainier.

• The Kirkland Concours d'Elegance moves to its permanent home at the LeMay this year, taking place Sept. 8 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. (kirklandconcours.com). If you love vintage luxury cars and foreign exotics, there's no better show in the Northwest. It's recognized as one of the premier concours events, with participants selected from across the U.S. and Canada.

Autos are judged by a panel of international experts, as well as a group of sixth- through ninth-graders,known as the Junior Judges. Adult admission is $30 for non-members, which includes entry to the museum.

About that glaring disparity you'll have to draw your own conclusions.

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