Who wants to park in front of a TV set this weekend when there is great collector car action going on right here in Wichita?
The Starbird-Devlin Rod & Customs Charities Car Show opens Friday and runs through the Sunday afternoon awards ceremony at Century II Convention Center, 225 W. Douglas.
More than 300 cars including perfectly restored classics, full-on customs and performance-enhanced hot rods will be on display in the various exhibition halls. Youngsters will be able to enjoy face painting, magic shows, a scavenger hunt and building their own model car kits to take home with them.
“The Kids Zone will be bigger and better than last year. Revell has donated the make and take models and everything is free in the Kids Zone,” said Carl Fry, one of the board members of Cars for Charities.
“We have cars coming from all over the country,” he said. “We’ve got a cross section of cars. You just name it, you will be impressed with the quality of cars.”
Sixty-two cars invited by show promoters will be vying for the Magnificent 7 awards, a total of $11,500 to be split up among the top entries. To qualify for Magnificent 7 judging, a car must not have been formally shown in public in Wichita before, Fry explained.
Among the contenders will be Lawrence Smith’s 1932 Delage d8N, a French-built classic, along with Mike Cozad’s “bone stock” 1940 Chevy coupe, both locally-owned cars.
“We have some really nice lead sleds, too, like Al Enfields’ chopped ’50 Merc from North Bend, Nebr. It’s painted a Razzleberry color,” Fry said. “We also will have Dick Stevens’ black ’56 Chevy convertible from Isola, Miss. It has one of the very few Chevy small block dual overhead cam engines in it.”
The Magnificent 7 contenders are selected by an eight-judge panel at a Saturday morning breakfast and the cars will be easily spotted by signs and a tower of balloons located at each display.
“We have really good club participation this year,” Fry said, noting several chapters bringing multiple car entries. “And this will be the River City Car Club’s last show. They are disbanding and chose our show to be their last hurrah.”
Musical entertainment will be provided by the group “On Call” and by “Across the Pond,” a British Invasion-themed band. Besides the automotive displays, there will be plenty of vendors on hand, selling T-shirts or full restoration and customizing services.
Show proceeds go to support three local charities: The Arc of Sedgwick County, Starkey Inc. and Big Brothers Big Sisters.