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Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Day at a Car Show

The morning sun has just started to tip the edge of the horizon, spilling over candy-coated paint jobs and gleaming chrome as their owners line them up to compete in exhibition arena. As they finish buffing fenders until they don’t have a spot on them, and a few other last touches, other car show aficionados and venders arrive and set up. Then the music is turned on, and suddenly, the calm morning bursts into a shower of activity. Fans peruse tables of aftermarket accessories, add-ons, and car kits. Competitors compare notes and talk shop. Judges prepare to pick out their favorite cars from among some of the best automobiles in the nation. And you are going to be right in the middle of it. Here are a few suggestions on how to make your car show experience as enjoyable as possible:

Bring Sunscreen

If you happen to be fair skinned, as I am, then you know that not much can take the joy of a lovely sunny day more than an itching, and painful, sunburn. Make sure to bring along a sunscreen that has the right level of SPF protection for your complexion and skin type. Also, some brands tend to sting like the devil if they get in your eyes, so try to get a brand that is tear free, that way you can be sure to keep your view of the cars unobstructed by unwanted tears. Unless, of course, you need an excuse to cry over your dream car, in which case, it might be good to have something to blame the water works on...

Photo Emphasis

You’ll want to be sure not to forget to bring a camera, and batteries, for those special moments (and cars) that you want to remember.

To Bring Food or Not

Each show is has different rules about what is allowed to be brought into exhibition areas, so if you are planning to bring snacks, you might want to make sure it is allowed before you decide to bring them.


Nothing beats some good ole’ H2O when it comes to combating the heat stroke and exhaustion that so many car show attendees suffer from each year. Be sure to bring some with you, or buy it at a concession stand, and you won’t have to be worried about the muscle cramps, headaches, nausea, and loss of energy that are often associated with heat stroke.

Wear the Right Shoes

Walking all day (and possibly several in a row depending on the show) puts some serious stress on the feet, and can have your feet crying to go home long before you are ready to. Many find sandals, or Mary-Jane styled shoes, to be very comfortable for all day wear.

Be Familiar with Car Culture and Etiquette

The last thing you want to do is anger a man who has spent months, maybe even years, of his life building, painting, waxing, and washing his prized automobile. “Look, but don’t touch” is generally a good rule to follow, which includes accidental run-ins of your clothes, bags, and cameras. If you find yourself so touched by a particular cars beauty that you are moved to shed the before mentioned tears, just make sure they don’t hit the car.

With these preparations taken care of, and out of the way, you will be ready to get a bright and early start on enjoying your day at one of the many fabulous car shows that America has to offer. It’s time to have some fun!