There will be a lot more than just minivans, pickups and sedans driving through Montesano this weekend. The 11th Annual Historic Montesano Car Show will start on July 19 and bring cars from all over.
Dave Foss, who coordinates much of this event, said any special interest car is welcome to the show. Since participants register the day of the show, organizers never quite know what is going to show up.
“We’ve seen everything from muscle, to stock, to Japanese tuners, to brand new custom cars,” he said. “If you think your car is cool, then most likely other people are going to agree and want to see it, too.”
Although around half of the cars entered are from Grays Harbor, many come from the Shelton, Olympia and Centrailia areas.
“We’ve had a few people from even farther out. One guy ferried his ‘57 Chevy all the way down from Alaska,” he said. “We usually see a few from Oregon and California as well.”
All of the proceeds from this event go to local charities, including the Montesano Food Bank, the local senior center, Chehalis Valley Historical Museum, Children’s Advocacy Center of Grays Harbor and Montesano Police Department’s bike helmet charity.
Car show participants will need to give $15 or $10 plus a food bank donation to enter.
The food donations are loaded into the back of a pickup truck for the Montesano Food Bank. Last year, they filled the bed and were able to be a big help, Foss said.
There are more than 40 awards to win. Local businesses, such as Pick Rite Thriftway, pitch in money that goes to charity and to buy a plaque to pick their favorite car at the show. The crowd, participants, the mayor, the Lake Sylvia park ranger as well as the fire and police chiefs all choose their favorites as well. These are handed out on Saturday afternoon, Foss said.
The number of total cars at the show correlates with what the weather is like.
“Last year, it drizzled on Friday but was great weather on Saturday and we had 220 cars enter,” he said. “If we keep having nice days, we can usually expect to have around 300.”
The events begin on Friday with a poker run, which costs $1 per car to enter. Particpants drive around to five locations, that are disclosed that day, to pick up a poker card from each. The trail ends at Fosses Hot Rods and Cool Cars for a rootbeer float social and to detemine which driver picked the best hand. The run ends at the Aberdeen Elks Club, where drinks and burgers will be available for purchase.
The car show volunteers are not the only ones helping. The Chehalis Chamber of Commerce plans to provide kids games in Fleet Park on Saturday.
“This event is always a lot of work and coordination,” Foss said. “We have a fantastic team of volunteers and a lot of community support from many businesses. Grays Harbor County has also been great for giving us a parking lot and opening up the 1911 County Courthouse for tours. That’s been very popular and we appreciate it.”
After the cars have been judged, the prizes given out and the participants and passerby fed, there will be a drive from Lake Sylvia State Park, past Montesano Health and Rehab and through the center of town. Many set up lawn chairs around the route to watch the parade, Foss said.
The Montesano Historic Car Show began in 2002 as part of the Festival of People. Although the Chamber of Commerce decided they weren’t getting enough volunteers to continue putting on the festival, the car show enthusiasists and local businesses rallied together to continue the show.
For more information, contact Dave Foss at email@example.com or (360) 580-7941.
The Historic Montesano Car Show can also be found on Facebook or at www.montesano.us/Calendar.aspx?EID=470.
Starts Friday, July 19
Root beer float social and poker run starts at Fosses Hot Rods & Cool Cars at 3 p.m.
Poker run ends at Aberdeen Elks Club
Saturday, July 20
Registration starts at 8 a.m.
$15 or $10 food bank donation