Summer is here and no amount of meddling from that dirty tart La Nina is going to put a stopper on the season of cars and car-related attractions. Grab the keys from the davenport, gas up the Packard and leave the motoring scarf next to your work boots – there’s automotive fun just around the bend.
Kirkland Classic Car Show (July 31st)
Like church and American football, the annual Kirkland Classic Car Show is held on Sunday. Each year the waterfront streets of beautiful downtown Kirkland close and convert to parking spaces for hundreds of classic, custom and hotrod cars and trucks.
Sponsored by Legends Car Club, the event impresses not only with a seriously eclectic grouping of automobiles, but also a number of their owners to match, most of which will be sitting in lawn chairs behind their pride and joy, willing to mix, mingle and shoot the Lake Washington breeze with passersby so long as the conversation doesn't stray too far from their vehicle.
Kirkland Concours d’ Elegance (September 11)
If the Kirkland Classic Car Show doesn’t live up to your ritzy standards, wait a few months and travel down Lakeview Drive to the city’s swankiest waterfront location at Carillon Point for the 9th annual Concours d’ Elegance.
Over the better portion of a decade, the family oriented gathering has established itself as one of the premier concours events in the country with vehicles selected from across the United States and Canada. This year’s categories include:
1. Aston Martin
2. Brass Antiques
3. Pierce Arrows
4. Blackhawk Beauties
5. Working Girls - Imported from Aurora Avenue via Metro Bus.
(Light-Duty trucks produced between 1925 and 1950 - the first time Kirkland Concours has featured a commercial class. The new category will “Provide a colorful counterpoint to the elegance and style of the other classes.”
6. Collectors Class
7. Special Display
8. Straight Axle Corvettes (1953-1962)
9. Preservation Class
10. CCCA Early / CCCA Late
11. Vintage Wooden Boats – Classic Runabouts
12. Vintage Motorcycles – American Racers
All profits from the event benefit uncompensated children's care at Seattle Children's Hospital and Evergreen Hospital Medical Center.
Greenwood Car Show (June 25th)
In terms of sheer size, car shows don’t get any bigger in Washington State than the Greenwood car show. Rolling strong into its 19th year, the Seafair Sanctioned Community Event is expected to set more records with over a mile and a half long stretch of Greenwood Avenue packed to the gills with over 700 cars.
Last year’s extravaganza drew over 200,000 people, this year is expected to lure even more. Attractions include:
Hydroplanes, live music, food, vintage fire engine displays and a kid’s zone, not to mention the various shops, bars and restaurants already lining the strip.
Leashes for dogs and children are advised.
The Evergreen State’s mecca for auto racing and its many forms is nestled in the bosom of Monroe. Along with a wide array of motorsport entertainment designed for spectating, the speedway does its best to cultivate a motorsport community.
Weekend warriors need only make a few modifications to their vehicles (or none at all) to find themselves competing in a an event.
On the speedway website, a few simple clicks and a glance into the “Schedule” tab reveals a bountiful list of titillating activity:
-NASCAR sanctioned races
-Beacon Plumbing weekly racing series
-Evergreen Street Drags
-WWRA (Western Washington Racing Association) Races
-Various school bus competitions
-Stunt & Daredevil shows
If you can only make it to one event at the Evergreen Speedway this summer, ring in the fourth of July at the Speedway’s “Les Schwab USA Birthday Bash”. The celebration promises “Stinger 8, Hornets, V8 xTreme, Demo Derby, Roll Over, Bus and Boat, Mr. Dizzy and the Biggest Fireworks Display in Evergreen Speedway History.”
To find out what all of that means and get directions, visit www.evergreenspeedway.com.
For those readers hailing from the inland portions of Washington State, the allure of these events and attractions might pale to the hue of a cruel tease in the wake of rising summertime fuel prices, an inflated Fourth of July fireworks budget exacerbated by the execution of Osama Bin Laden, and a fear of exiting a Starbucks to find yet another Starbucks.
For these “rural” auto enthusiasts, please take a look at:
Here you’ll find a comprehensive list of car shows, festivals parades and the like that reach out beyond the bustling metropolis’ of Western Washington into small towns and lesser populated areas of the state, some of which stretch all the way to the eastern and southern borders.
Gas up the Packard, the Datsun, whichever is clever and enjoy the car lover’s season.