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Ford to sponsor 4-day car show

Organizers of a new car-truck-motorcycle event in Wichita this summer announced Thursday that Ford Motor Co. will be the main sponsor.

Ford will show off and demonstrate some of its high-performance vehicles at the four-day event, called BlackTop Nationals.

Organizers say they hope it will draw 100,000 people this year and become an annual event in Wichita that draws national attention and spending to the city.

"It's much more than just a car show," said event spokesman Jesse Powell during a news conference with city officials and supporters at Century II.

"There's just a lot of things happening in four days," from Aug. 26 through Aug. 29, Powell said.

Plans call for activities including a show with roughly 1,000 vehicles of all ages and types, a "historic cruise" along Douglas, a classic-car auction, driving and riding events, and food vendors.

Most of the events will occur in and around downtown Wichita: from roughly the Delano district east to Main and from Waterman north past Douglas. Some events will take place in Park City.

The event is designed to be family friendly, organizers say. A one-time $2 admission fee and wristband will allow children and adults to attend almost all of the events.

The activities also will "showcase Wichita nationally," said BlackTop Nationals president Rick Nuckolls, partly through magazines that focus on auto-related events.

There will be some special cars on display, some worth around $1 million each, Nuckolls said.

Some event proceeds will be donated to the Kansas Aviation Museum, the McPherson College auto restoration program and Wichita Children's Home.

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