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Friday, May 6, 2016

Car club revved up over shows

Friday, May 11, 2012

The Antique Automobile Club of America Grand National show -- and the Southeastern Special Fall Meet, which will be held the same weekend -- are a little more than a month away.

Officials of the Celebration City Region Car Club Inc., which will host the event, say that the numbers are looking good.

"We're still getting registrations every day," said club president Jerry Clanton, whose wife Phyllis is registration chair for the show.

Many entries

About 700 registrations have been received so far, and national AACA officials have advised the club to expect a rush of registrations later this month during the last 10 days before the deadline.

Clanton said that exhibitors from 35 different states had registered as of last week.

Calvin Kincaid serves as chairman for the dual meet.

The unusual but not unheard-of double event will be held June 14-16 on the Celebration grounds.

Event schedule

Preliminary events for AACA members will be held on Thursday. The Grand National show, with stricter entry requirements, will take place on Friday, and the Southeastern Special meet will be held on Saturday.

During the day on both Friday and Saturday, spectators will be welcome to come out and view the lovingly-preserved and carefully-restored vehicles on display, from every part of the U.S. There's no admission charge for spectators.

Vendors will be open from 7:30 a.m. until 3 p.m. on both days.

Award winners

Jerry Clanton said there will be more than 150 AACA judges attending the show.

Exhibitor Roger Reitano will drive eight days from Alaska to show his 1931 Chevrolet, which has brought home awards every time it's been entered in an AACA show. The extremely-rare model is a five-passenger coupe which had its top cut off to become a convertible. Roll-up windows, still uncommon in 1931, were installed as a necessity.

The Celebration City club had hosted the Southeastern regional AACA event in 1994. Club members applied four years ago to host both the Grand National and the Southeastern Special Fall Meet in Shelbyville this year.

Support impresses

Intense planning has been underway for the past two years. AACA officials who visited Shelbyville in 2010 were amazed at the level of community support, and delighted with the Celebration facility.

During the day on Thursday, there will be time for visiting AACA members to explore the community. An organized bus trip will be held to the Jack Daniel Distillery in Lynchburg, and the brochure for the double event also directs visitors to Bell Buckle and to Stones River National Battlefield in Murfreesboro as nearby tourist attractions.

Clanton said that sign-ups for tours and banquets are going well.

Clubs

AACA has members in all 50 states and 50 foreign countries. Last year's Grand National was held in Santa Rosa, Calif.; the event moves each year from one side of the Mississippi to the other.

The Celebration City Region Car Club meets at 7 p.m. on the first Thursday of each month at 50's and Fiddles on Depot Street, just off the square. For more information about the AACA dual meet, or the club's other local activities year-round, go to www.celebrationcitycarclub.com.

For more information about the parent organization, go to www.aaca.org. Local club members stress that membership is open to anyone who appreciates antique cars, whether or not they actually own or exhibit them. Youth memberships are also welcome.