Thousands of hot rods will roll in for show
Car enthusiasts' fingers will point every which way this weekend as thousands of vintage stock cars, muscle cars and hot rods motor into central Ohio from across the country.
The Goodguys 15th PPG National Car Show will be held Friday through Sunday, July 6-8, at the Ohio Expo Center, 717 E. 17th Ave.
"If you love cars, this is the place to be," said Betsy Bennett, public relations coordinator for the show, one of 20 being held at various U.S. cities this year. The Columbus show is the ninth of 20 shows this season.
The Goodguys Rod & Custom Association, headquartered in the northern California city of Pleasanton, sponsors the show.
In addition to showcasing thousands of hot rods, the event features vendor exhibits, a used auto parts swap, seminars, a model car show and live entertainment.
The show opens at 8 a.m. July 6 at the Ohio Expo Center, but some activities are off-site at National Trail Raceway in Hebron, where drag-racing competitions are held.
Gates at the raceway open at 2 p.m. July 6. Time trials commence at 4 p.m., followed at 7 p.m. by eliminations in a variety of classes. Tickets for the races at National Trail Raceway are sold separately at the track for $20.
The drag-racing event will feature an exhibition featuring "Bullet Bob's" 1977 Trans-Am and Mike McIntire's "Mac Attack."
The Ohio Expo Center will host the Goodguys AutoCross course. The course is approximately 1,000 feet in length, electronically timed, and features tight turns requiring rapid acceleration and deceleration.
The Goodguys PPG National Car Show features numerous specialty divisions, with none including cars made after 1972. But new to the show this year is a specialty section that will showcase later-model American-built or -powered cars.
The overall show is limited in eligibility to cars manufactured no later than 1972. Organizers did so because in 1973 automotive manufacturers began cutting horsepower in response to a nationwide oil crisis, ending the era of the true muscle car.
"The event provides something for everyone in the family to enjoy," Bennett said.
The show includes several specialty parking areas, open from 7 a.m. to noon Saturday, July 7, including a "Ya Gotta Drive 'Em" area reserved for vehicles whose owners drove the vehicle, rather than transporting it by trailer, at least 300 miles to the show; "Mighty Muscle," an exhibit for cars built from 1955-72; "Homebuilt Heaven," featuring kit cars; and "Trick Truck Corral" for pick-up trucks; and new this year, "Good Wood," a showcase of "woodies" of all makes and models.
July 8, the final day of the show, will feature a new event, "Super-Sunday Get Together," providing an opportunity for owners of the American-made or -powered vehicles manufactured after 1972 to show off their cars.
"We have drivers coming from 37 different states and Canada," Bennett said.
The show also features vendors selling or swapping auto parts and accessories.
The Goodguys PPG Nationals culminates July 8 with an awards ceremony beginning at 2:22 p.m.
The odd starting time began as a lark in 2002. In response to concerns from contestants that the 3 p.m. ceremony was too late, as some were driving several hours to get home, promoters moved up the time.
Even though it was only 38 minutes earlier, Bennett said the quirky time stuck, and organizers stayed with it.
Awards include "Low Lid," for the ride with the lowest roof; "Homebuilt Heaven," handed out to the best car completely fabricated in the enthusiast's own garage; and "Builder's Choice" selections.
The Ring Brothers and the Roadster Shop will name the Builder's Choice awards, honoring the top 10 overall vehicles.
Dozens of other specialty awards will be presented.
The 15th Goodguys PPG Nationals will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. July 6-7 and from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. July 8. General admission is $18 for adults, $6 for children ages 7-12. Children ages 6 and younger are admitted free.
Parking is $6 per vehicle, a fee of the Ohio Expo Center.
For further information about the show, including particular times for various events, call the Ohio Expo Center at 614-644-4000 or visit the websites good-guys.com or ohioexpocenter.com.