Paradise Valley car show event celebrates Veterans Day for 13th year

(submitted photo)

As a collective salute to the men and women who have served the nation, the Town of Paradise Valley is hosting its 13th Annual Vintage Car Show on Saturday, Nov. 11, with all proceeds benefiting two Arizona veteran organizations.

The sold-out event, which fittingly falls on Veterans Day this year, begins at 8:30 a.m. in the Town Hall parking lot, 6401 E. Lincoln Drive. The annual automobile show draws a display of classic vehicles that pre-date 1975 sports, antique, special interest, race cars and motorcycles, according to a public posting.

Paradise Valley automobile aficionados look forward to meeting and greeting fellow car enthusiasts and citizens from all over the Valley, organizers of the event say. Following the car show, a short “Driving Tour” with the motorcade of model cars finishes at Paradise Valley’s El Chorro restaurant. In addition, refreshments will be served at the event on a donation basis to benefit veterans.

“This is the largest event that the town puts on,” former Paradise Valley mayor Ed Winkler said during an Oct. 23 phone interview.

He anticipates about 1,000 spectators or more, he says, to support the annual event that not only highlights the classic cars but the importance of supporting local veterans’ short-term and long-term needs. The event celebrates Veterans Day as all proceeds benefit two charities — Arizona Military Assistance Mission and Sentinels of Freedom.

“What’s kind of also interesting about this show is that it is a gross-equals-net show,” Mr. Winkler said, explaining that all the money goes towards various veterans’ initiatives. “Every dime of that goes to the vets.”

He spoke of some benefits that wounded veterans may need to assist them with years of rehabilitation or to help the families of wounded veterans who are hospitalized across the country, at places such as the Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Bethesda, Md.

“For Arizona families, money can be provided to fly them back east to spend time with their loved ones,” Mr. Winkler said of assistance Military Assistance Mission provides.

The show features classic vehicles with a mixed genre of pre- and post-war era European and American classics, and sports cars, hot rods, American muscle and many more.

“This year, the cut-off for cars is pre-1975,” Mr. Winkler said.

In 13 years the Veterans Day car show has continued to grow each year, Paradise Valley Mayor Michael Collins says.

“The annual car show is the gem of town-sponsored events. It’s one of the few opportunities for many Paradise Valley residents to mix and mingle with other town residents who share an appreciation for classic automobiles,” Mayor Collins said in a prepared statement provided on Oct. 24.

“I’m proud of the legacy that Mayor Winkler and Mayor Clarke started with this annual event and happy to see it become more and more popular each and every year.”

Patrons of the car show not only appreciate the small town feel, Mayor Collins says, but seeing old classic cars out-and-about in Paradise Valley is a unique opportunity.

“Doing this on town campus and in appreciation of the service of our veterans ties it all together in to a great town tradition with a heart-felt purpose,” he added, noting the significance of the event falling on Veterans Day this year. “It’s a great opportunity to pay tribute to all American veterans—living or dead—but, especially to give thanks to living veterans who served our country honorably during war or peacetime.”

Mayor Collins, a veteran who served in the Navy for six years, is not only proud to honor veterans through this event, but says he is proud of what the military taught him about how to be a leader, serving with honor and respect, he noted.

“It also gave me valuable experience finding workable solutions to difficult challenges in complex environments – the perfect training for a civilian politician,” Mayor Collins said.

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