Culture

12 Can't Miss Events For Auto Enthusiasts

Car culture is a big part of who we are as a country. So if you want to truly experience America, you have to start with four wheels. Check out some of these top events —all of them are road-trip worthy.

01. January – Hot Import Nights

Photo Credit: hotimportnights.com

This touring event—the largest consumer car show in the world—features plenty of imports and compact cars on display, along with tuner competitions and live performances from DJs and hip-hop artists. And if you can’t make it in January, they’ll be trekking across the country all year. Year Round 

02. February – Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum

Photo Credit: Wes Frazer Photography 

It’s cold, so you get a pass to head indoors. Visit the largest collections of motorcycles and Lotus race cars in the world at Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum (add link to our Barber photo gallery). You’ll see more than 650 motorcycles on any given day, including vintage models that date back to 1904. Don’t leave without checking out the racetrack, home to the IndyCar Grand Prix of Alabama held each April. Year Round

Check out our gallery from the World's Largest Motorcycle Collection at Barber's

03. March – Daytona Bike Week

One of the biggest, most popular biker rallies in the country will be celebrating its 75th Anniversary this year. If you’re looking for more than just warm weather this spring break, you’ll find motorcycle races, contests, live music, parties, and plenty of beach time in the sun—all in the company of half a million new friends. March 4-13

04. April – The Barrett-Jackson Auction

Photo Credit: barretjackson.com 

This quarterly event is one of the biggest collector car auctions in the world, and with television coverage and a multitude of celebrities like Sharon Stone, Bubba Watson, and Alice Cooper known to frequent the events, it’s become quite a show. Many of the pricier models sell for millions, but hey, we all need something to aspire to, right? April 8-10

05. May – The NASCAR All-Star Race

Photo Credit: Hendrick Motorsports 

If you’re a hardcore NASCAR fan, there’s nothing more thrilling than witnessing the best drivers in the sport as they’re pitted against each other in Charlotte. If you’re a NASCAR fan in the making, there’s no better time for your formal introduction. May 21

06. June – Desert Valley Auto Parts

Photo Credit: dvap.com 

There’s just something awesome about a junkyard, isn’t there? The world-famous Desert Valley Auto Parts (as seen on The Discovery Channel’s Desert Car Kings) spans 40 acres near Phoenix, AZ and features a wealth of vintage parts for every type of vehicle.  Year Round

07. July – International Monster Truck Museum

Photo Credit: monstermuseum.org 

The biggest, baddest vehicles on the planet converge in one museum. Famed trucks like King Kong, Goliath, and the Nitecrawler Tank are on display, plus lots of great historical exhibits documenting some of the wildest rides in the sport.  Year Round

08. August – The Woodward Dream Cruise

Photo Credit: wikipedia.org

How do you put together the world’s largest one-day auto event? You gather 40,000 classic cars from around the globe, parade them down Woodward Avenue (America’s first highway), and wait for 1.5 million people to show up. There’s a reason why they call it the Motor City, after all. August 20

09. September – Canfield Fair Demolition Derby

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com 

There’s no automotive spectacle quite like a demolition derby. And if you’re looking for a big one, try the world’s largest at the Canfield Fair in Mahoning County, OH, featuring over 100 racers looking to grind their gears on the battlefield. August 31 through September 5

10. October – The Race of Gentlemen

Photo Credit: Petrolicious

This is no ordinary drag race. With a strict commitment to hot rods, all competing cars must be made before 1934 (or 1947 for motorcycles). Best of all, the races all take place on the beaches of New Jersey. They don’t race ‘em like this anymore—and if you need further convincing, check out filmmaker Adam Reynolds’ footage of the 2014 eventOctober 2-4

11. November – SEMA Show

Photo Credit: semashow.com 

If you’re a hardcore gearhead, you’ll find the latest and greatest in car tech at one of the automotive industry’s biggest trade events. And if you’re a gearhead in training, there are tons of product demos and educational seminars on everything from technology and industry trends to basic business practices. November 1-4

12. December – NASCAR Champions Week

Photo Credit: Hendrick Motorsports 

When the NASCAR season comes to a close, the last big event of the year is one of the most enjoyable. Some of the sport’s best drivers will be on hand in the heart of Las Vegas, and you’ll witness fan-tastic activities like the Jeopardy-inspired FanFest, the live-action Victory Lap, and the interactive Fan Photo ChallengeDecember 7-9 (NOTE: 2016 Dates have not been finalized as of publication)


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