There’s a new dance venue and a new live band at the Columbia Classics Autumn Show and Shine, but the 22nd annual event is holding on to its most important element: cars, and lots of them.
“There’s everything from early 1920s original style cars to brand new 2010-11 Camaros, and everything in between,” says valley car club president Vicki Roberts. “Last year our numbers were down a little bit, but usually there are between 900 and 1,000 cars from anywhere — down in the United States, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, all over.”
The event, runs all day Saturday at the Springs Golf Club, with spin-off activities at the Radium Ball Park, Seniors’ Hall and on the stretch of Highway 93/95 leading into Invermere (see full schedule on pages six and seven).
As in past years, the 2011 show promises to feature classic and newer cars in top condition, as well as those still getting spruced up.
“Everyone shows their vehicle for different reasons,” Roberts explains.
“Some people show them because they’re really nice, and some people show them because they’re proud of them. It doesn’t have to be a beautiful car for someone to think that it’s good. Lots of people have vehicles that they’re just working on and restoring and they bring those. They might have no paint on them, or they might be totally done.”
Throughout the Saturday show, participants can vote for their three favourite vehicles.
A participants’ top 10 is released at the end of the day, before a 1950s and 60s dance at the ball park.
For those without cars to show, Roberts has several tips for making the most of the weekend:
GET A PREVIEW
Early participants register their cars Friday evening, then often use the rest of the night to head out on a cruise.
“Go out for a walk and you might see the cars driving around or catch a glimpse of them downtown,” Roberts suggests.
CATCH THE PARADE
Cars are set up for exhibition at the Springs Golf Course from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., but if you happen to be in Invermere when the show wraps up, you can still catch the cars.
“At 4 p.m. we do an unsanctioned cruise, and anyone that wants to participate can go from Radium to Invermere. It’s kind of like a parade,” Roberts says.
“So if you were in Invermere and sitting along by Sobeys, you would see a lot of the cars then.”
DANCE ALL NIGHT
While show ‘n shine participants get first crack at tickets for the car club’s dance, locals can snag leftovers at the show Saturday morning for $25. This year will feature Calgary band Metrobeat and retro decor. Poodle skirts, saddle shoes and other ’50s and ’60s dress is a must.