CHESAPEAKE CITY — Vehicle enthusiasts can expect to see cars of all ages, makes, model at the Chesapeake City Lions Club Car Show on Saturday, according to Bob Kidner, chairman of the event.
“It is a wide variety,” he said. “Anywhere from a 1923 T Bucket all the way up to a 2017 Corvette. Everything is there. But the majority is from the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s.”
Show cars can begin arriving at 6:30 a.m. and the show will start at 8 a.m. in South Chesapeake City.
Parking in town will be dedicated to the car show. But spectators can park at the Little League ball field on Basil Avenue and catch a ride on a special shuttle bus to the event. The bus will run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Kidner said.
The annual car show is in its ninth year, it has grown with each passing year, according to Kidner.
“We fill up every street,” he said. “In fact, we’ve expanded into the elementary school parking lot and ball field.”
Last year’s event brought in 605 show cars, but Kidner hopes to do even better this year.
“[We’re expecting] 625 cars, give or take,” he said.
Of the cars that come to the show, Kidner said typically 300 to 325 are pre-registered while the remaining vehicles come in early that morning and register the day of the show.
The pre-registration deadline has passed, but motorists can still register their vehicle for $20 at the gate.
All fees will benefit the charities that the Chesapeake City Lions Club supports, according to Kidner.
“All the money that we raise from this car show, 100% goes back out into the community … This is our biggest fundraising event,” he said. “Each year we’re able to put out typically right around $21,000 back into the community.”
Funds raised by the car show contribute to causes such as scholarships for high school seniors, assistance for the Chesapeake City Fire Company, and worldwide aid through Lions Club International.
When former Mayor Frank Hill started the car show in 2001, the Lions Club was on hand to help with traffic control. The club took over the show in its third year and has been running it ever since, according to Kidner.
Although he has been the chairman of the show for the past six years, Kidner credits his wife, Shirley, for helping him arrange the logistics of the annual event.
“My wife is my biggest supporter ... I couldn’t do this without all her support,” he said.
Kidner said the Chesapeake City Lions Club’s president, Donna Shelton, has provided great guidance going into her second year as president.
“She’s an excellent leader,” he said.
Kidner thanked the many businesses and organizations that sponsor the show, including prizes from Ron Francis Wiring, Schaefer’s Canal House, Bayard House, Chesapeake Inn, Prime 225, and others.
Kidner also said that the Lions Club would not be able to do the show without the Delaware Street Rod Car Club, which provides guidance for parking the show cars as they come in and provides two experienced judges for the event.
At 2 p.m., the Lions Club will award a framed photograph of the Chesapeake City Bridge to the Top 40 cars. There will also be a parade at Pell Gardens for the Top 40 winners, Kidner said.
This year, the event will feature a new award: the Lady’s Choice Award.
The show will also present awards for titles such as “Largest Caravan of Cars,” “Longest Distance for Historic Cars,” and “Longest Distance Period.”
“A lot of these cars are old, so it’s really neat when you have somebody that comes 225 miles and so forth,” Kidner said, adding that the longest distance traveled for the show in the past was four couples in four Corvettes coming from Michigan.
There will also be an honorable mention called the On The Spot award, which will be given to a car that did not make it into the Top 40 — and therefore will not be featured in the parade — but still deserved recognition, according to Kidner.
In addition to the car show, Kidner said people will be able to enjoy food from several vendors, including crab cakes and fish sandwiches from Bethel AME Church and a shaved ice station with 45 different flavors.
Kidner said the town has been very supportive of the car show over the years.
“The town of Chesapeake City and the residents of Chesapeake City are just so wonderful with their support for our show,” he said. “We do kind of take over the town for the day and it can be overwhelming. They can’t park in front of their houses. But we’ve always had positive feedback.”
Whether a vehicle aficionado or a casual car fan, Kidner encouraged one and all to come out and enjoy the family-oriented event.
“It’s a day when everybody can meet up with friends, rendezvous, catch up on news, get some food and just have some fun during the day,” he said.