Just because summer is downshifting its gears to a fast-approaching fall equinox, the thrill of attending a Corvette-only event doesn't have to be put off until next spring. September and October are great months for communing with fellow Corvette cognoscenti, as evidenced by Mid America Motorworks' Corvette Funfest, held each September in Effingham, Illinois. (This year's 'fest will take place September 16-18.) Funfest always ranks among the year's largest events, with 10,000-plus Corvettes in attendance.
Regional Corvette clubs across the country are counting the days until their post-Labor Day get-togethers, too. As we mentioned last month, when we introduced you to four regional Vette shows east of the Mississippi, these grassroots clubs deserve some national recognition for the outstanding work they do supporting the hobby.
With that in mind, we've picked four more Corvette-only events, this time west of the Mississippi, that you still have time to register for and attend in 2011. Among them, you'll find many of the Corvette activities you've been yearning for: traditional car shows, drives to scenic locales, autocrossing, superspeedway laps, and rallies. We've also included a popular, but recently held, Texas-based event you'll want to check out in 2012.
Historic Prescott All Corvette Car Show: Prescott, Arizona
Dates September 23-25
Location Courthouse Plaza; Prescott, Arizona
Registration Fee $30 (after August 24: $35) The event is limited to the first 250 Corvettes registered, and pre-registration is highly recommended.
The fifth annual Historic Prescott All Corvette Car Show offers a unique setting: one mile above sea level in the northern Arizona mountain community, which was the first territorial capital of the 48th state. It draws participants from all over Arizona, along with attendees from California, Oregon, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, and New Mexico. The three-day event includes a Friday-night dinner party at the show site; an all-day show on Saturday, with judging in all six generations of Corvettes; and drive-outs on Sunday to northern Arizona destinations such as Sedona and the mining community of Bagdad. "The Saturday car show really sets our event apart from other Corvette gatherings," event coordinator Dennis Stringer says. "We line Corvettes up on both sides of a three-block area of downtown Prescott, which includes historic Whisky Row, and give out trophies at the adjacent courthouse plaza, which dates back to the 1880s. It attracts over 6,000 visitors to the historic location, where there are a variety of restaurants, gift shops, antique stores, and art galleries."
Proceeds from the event benefit Prescott Firefighters Charities, the show's sponsor.
Tahoe Tour: Lake Tahoe, Nevada
Dates September 9-11
Location Lake Tahoe, Nevada
Entry Fee $165 per couple
Founding members of Corvettes of Fresno began the tradition of putting Corvette owners on a road trip from Fresno, California, to Lake Tahoe, Nevada, in 1963. They made the event official in 1969, and it's now in its 43rd consecutive year.
The three-day event includes the rally, a show-and-shine car show, BBQ lunches, poker runs around Lake Tahoe, and a Corvette run to Virginia City, Nevada. It concludes with a banquet dinner, dance, and awards.
"It's a great location with a lot of extracurricular activities available within driving distance," event chairman Nick DiLido says. "The event has grown 20-fold since it started over four decades ago. No matter where you are in the United States or Canada, if you have a Corvette, you're invited to our event."
All profits are donated to several charities chosen by the club members prior to each year's event. This year's recipients are Nancy Hinds Hospice, Majorie Mason Center, and the Make a Wish Foundation, all in Fresno.
Corvette Roulette: North Las Vegas, Nevada
Dates October 7-9
Location Aliante Hotel; North Las Vegas, Nevada
Entry Fee $75 per driver/passenger (special activities require a separate entry fee)
Now in its sixth year, Las Vegas Corvettes Association's Corvette Roulette bills itself as the West's premier Corvette-event value. The three-day soiree is held at the new Aliante Hotel in North Las Vegas, Nevada, and includes a welcome party with hors d'oeuvres, music, and dancing; a concours-judged car show; a poker and gimmick rally; low-speed and MTT autocross activities at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway; and an award banquet with a fabulous buffet, music, and dancing.
Participants come from Nevada, California, Arizona, New Mexico, Idaho, and Utah. Proceeds benefit the YMCA of Southern Nevada.
According to event coordinator Pat Russell, "It's lots of fun for Corvette owners from all over."
Great Pumpkin Chase: Omaha, Nebraska
Date October 15
Location Life Gate Church; Omaha, Nebraska
Registration Fee $15
Website www.midwestearlycorvette club.com
When Harley Earl designed the original Corvette, he probably didn't put the curious pastime of pumpkin chasing on his short list of fun things to do in Chevrolet's new two-seat sports car. But that hasn't prevented The Midwest Early Corvette Club from hosting the Great Pumpkin Chase for the past 34 years.
Unlike a traditional car show, this creative Corvette event begins with a rally, which sends drivers in search of clues such as street signs, business signs, and slogans over a 50-mile course along city streets, country roads, and tree-covered lanes. The clues must be completed with accuracy, both in artwork and signage, and each error means a reduction in score. The driver with the highest score plus the closest-to-official time and mileage is declared the winner in each class. A dance and costume party follow the rally.
Attendees have come from as far as Minnesota and Florida. Proceeds go to Nebraska Kidney Foundation, the American Cancer Society, and the American Heart Society.
The following Corvette show has already come and gone for 2011, but it'll be back in 2012. Be sure to mark it on your calendars.
Lone Star Corvette Club Classic 2012: Fort Worth, Texas
Dates May 18-20, 2012
Location Texas Motor Speedway; Fort Worth, Texas
Entry Fee Event activities are priced individually, or "menu style." Please see the website beginning in March 2012 for details.
The premier Corvettes-only event in Texas will celebrate its 23rd anniversary at the Texas Motor Speedway (TMS) on May 18-20, 2012. Hosted by the Lone Star Corvette Club, the "Classic" attracts 400 to 500 Corvettes and members of many Corvette clubs from across the United States and Canada. Activities include judged and "show 'n' shine" indoor car shows, an autocross, a treasure run, live and silent auctions, a variety of automotive vendors, and exciting track events held on the TMS oval and road course. Saturday's cars shows are open to the public, with free admission and parking
The Classic is the sole fundraiser for the club's three charities: NASCAR's Speedway Children's Charities, the National Corvette Museum, and a rotating charity that is chosen each year. Last year it was the Wounded Warriors Project.
"The car shows are really four shows in one," Bob Young, the event's public relations spokesperson, says. "The show 'n' shine is divided into member and non-member groups, with each group voting on the other's Corvettes. Sixteen First Place awards are presented in each group. Likewise, the judged show is divided into member/non-member groups, with judges scoring the cars, and 15 awards given to both First and Second Place finishers in each group. There are individual awards, too, including Best of Show. All of the cars are displayed together under the grandstands of Texas Motor Speedway, assuring perfect weather no matter what conditions are like outside."