Just about anyone over the age of 30 probably knows what Texas had “the best li’l one” of, but here is a chance to be a part of the biggest little car show and auction in the Northeast. G. Potter King Company has organized the Atlantic City Classic car show and Auction for more than 20 years. It is the largest event in the Northeast of its kind — by far.
With more than 1,500 cars on display for a four-day period each February, The Atlantic City Classic Car Show and Auction has virtually something for everyone with cars of every era represented. It also offers something that most car shows don’t: the opportunity to own one or more of the great classics on display. One of the most exciting parts of the show is the ongoing auction that runs all four days of the event. Admission to the show also gives visitors access to watch the auction (bidders register in a separate process).
The show is not just about classic iron, however. The show also offers a giant flea market-style assortment of vendors. As it is an entirely heated indoor event, unlike outdoor flea markets, one never has to worry about the rain or cold while hunting the aisles for the oh-so-scarce Packard part or that original Chrysler “Letter Car” brochure! Other features of the show are the car corral, where individual owners can sell their cars without feeling like they have crossed a line … event organizers encourage negotiations.
The show for 2009 kicks off on Thursday, Feb. 26, at the Atlantic City Convention Center offering a room the size of many football fields and chock full of cars and parts of every ilk. General admission is a very reasonable $20 per head with generous group discounts available. Likewise, the auction kicks off that day as well, offering an unheard-of 2 percent buyers premium on Thursday only, so get there early if you are planning to bid.
In case that is not enough, for some additional excitement, G. Potter King also runs the Classics at the Borgata where it offers, as its sales tag line states, “The Best of the Best.” This event runs Thursday evening, and just as in past years, some very high-end cars are offered at this auction as well.
The auction picks up more steam on Friday with more than 100 cars on offer through each of the remaining three days of the auction. Many are offered without reserve, so there are some great values to be found.
Event organizer John Chiara has been a car nut for decades and understands that, in spite of the fact that 50,000 people attend each year, there is a need to keep the show small and friendly to each person who is there. Chiara spends virtually every moment of the show on the floor greeting customers and shaking hands, much like a local mayor would. Indeed, his mayoral-style duties don’t stop there as he personally handles each consignment for the sale — that is more than 500 cars for the convention center show and another 50 for the Borgata auction.
His efforts pay off with a very high-quality and extremely diverse selection of cars.
“Keeping a ‘small’ feeling to the show has been a major part of my recipe for success” says Chiara. “Too many companies grow and become impersonal. I care about my customers’ experience … everything else seems to work out when they have a good time before, during and after the show. Me and my staff work very hard for months on end to make sure the customer experience is a great one!”
The event is set for February 26, 27 and 28, as well as March 1. More information can be found at www.acclassiccars.com
Old Cars Weekly will have a booth there. Come on by and pick up your free copy of OCW and become a subscriber as well.