Community building creates perfect Kirkland Classic Car Show

The Kirkland Classic Car Show returned to the Kirkland downtown core for a two-day automotive extravaganza. In its 15th year, this annual tradition brought close to 300 cars to show with hundreds more wandering the streets in automotive awe.

“I’m in the show every year and I love all the different car here,” said Dave Despard, Kirkland resident and owner of a red 1978 TVR. “In Kirkland, this is our living room. And events like this are the neighbors and being out in the neighborhood. I stand here with my car and I’ve probably seen every neighbor I’ve had for 20 years; it’s not about cars it’s about community.”

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And for between the 20,000 and 30,000 (estimated) attendees, it was more than just a car show, but a way to get to know one another.

“The sunshine, car show, and it’s a local [car show] to my area. This is my only car show and I love Kirkland, we spend a lot of time here,” said Brad Sutton, Sammamish resident and owner 1968 Dodge Charger R/T. “My daughter is swimming while I’m here at the car show. This is a perfect venue for a car show.”

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While some came for the cars, others came for the sunshine, music and in-street line-dancing, or food; of which there were many food trucks and pop-up tents service all sorts of tantalizing treats.

“I think [my favorite part is] all the different cars coming from different times and there’s ones that date back from a long time ago and then ones that are new. I also like the paint colors… I just like everything, its amazing,” said young Tyler Been, who was there with his mother, sister, and grandparents from Florida. “I love the ice cream here, too.”

And there was quite a variety of cars, from old McLaren race cars to new FIAT 124 Spider convertibles, Flintstone’s foot car replicas to rat rods, and more. The Best of Show award went to a 1936 Auburn Boat-tail while another 37-percent of entrants took home a trophy.

“Next year will be bigger and better, now that everyone knows about it,” said Terri Fletcher, one of the organizers.

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According to Fletcher, long-time volunteer of the all-volunteer car show, the hardest parts of the car show are finding volunteers for the show and fundraising for the event’s needs (such as trophies, city permits, and more).

The Kirkland Classic Car Show has been a staple of the downtown corridor for 15 years and, historically, hosted by the Legends Car Club. However, a change in hosts and organizers brought out the best in the local automotive community, both in show and volunteering.

“Larry Hanson and his crew did a phenomenal job,” Fletcher said of those who took on the major organization efforts. “The last Sunday in July 2017 we’ll be back.”

This article was originally published on KirklandReporter.com, where Deanna is a syndicated columnist. Photographic Credit: Robert Isaacs

 

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