Cruise In 2016
AUGUST “CRUISE IN” CARSHOW A COMPLETE WASHOUT
For the past 12 summers, the Historical Society has sponsored a car show in Middletown. The first few events took place on the downtown business streets, drawing 50 to 70 entries. The fourth year drew so many entries that we were filling business parking lots and lawns until we finally spilled into Dietrich Park. There were nearly 150 beautiful cars parked everywhere. We were pleasantly overwhelmed. Since then we have moved the event to Dietrich Park where there is room to spread out.
We have consistently drawn 85 to 100 cars each show. It’s has become a well-attended and festive day with live entertainment and craft and food vendors.
In the 12 years of presenting the show, we had never had to cancel for any reason……. until 2016. On the 2nd Saturday in August, the set date for each show, it rained….a lot. Now, if you own a show car that you have spent years lovingly restoring and polishing, you probably do not want to take it out in bad weather. We cancelled and immediately made the following Saturday the “rain date.” We scrambled to do damage control; rescheduling entertainers and vendors, sending post cards to our regular exhibitors and placing news items in local papers.
Unfortunately, on the third Saturday in August, it rained. We jointly threw in the wet towel, packed the trophies off to the maker to have the date changed from 2016 to 2017. Perhaps Mother Nature will smile on the 2nd Saturday in August, 2017.
The car show takes several months of preparation; mailings to exhibitors, public relations, booking entertainment and vendors and finding qualified folks to judge the cars. We’ve done all this for so many years and we each have our designated tasks; it has become second nature to us. But it was a disappointment to go through all the prep and then have to cancel.
Additionally, the car show is the only major fund raising event we do each year. We depend upon the income from the event to keep the lights on at the Society. There has been considerable belt tightening.