The Do’s and Don’ts of Classic Car Cruises & Show Etiquette
One of the best things about warm weather is seeing all the antique cars escaping from their winter slumber and travelling to local car cruise-ins. For those who are beginners in the local car show circuit, we’ve already discussed what items you should bring. Since a person’s behavior can ruin or improve an event, here are some do’s and don’ts of car show attendance.
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Involve Your Children
Unattended youngsters can quickly become troublemakers at events showcasing rare, pristine items. If you bring your kids, keep them close the whole time, making sure they’re not touching things or going places they shouldn’t. It’s your responsibility to make sure your child is acting appropriately in a situation and learns respect for other people’s stuff.
However, that doesn’t mean you should keep them locked in the car, removed for the whole day. Make the car show a memorable experience for everyone by showing them the cars on display, pointing out fun aspects, letting them take pictures on their phones (if allowed), and sharing your personal stories. You can instill them with a shared appreciation for cars that way.
Control Your Pets
Similar to children (I know, it’s a terrible comparison to make), it’s you’re responsibility to make sure your furry companions are not getting into trouble. Don’t allow Spot to hop in someone’s ’57 Chevy or take a leak on the tire. And if the car owner doesn’t like animals, keep it away; this isn’t the time to change someone’s mind. And by all means, don’t let it off the leash! Check on the event website or call beforehand to make sure that pets are even allowed at the car show.
Be Polite and Helpful
If you’re asked questions, or don’t get a nice answer when you ask a question, remain respectful and patient. Don’t get into a war of egos to make a point. If you see unacceptable behavior, report it or tell the person calmly; they might not realize what they’re doing is inappropriate. Basically, treat others with the same respect you’d wish to receive.
In case you were never told this growing up–don’t take things that aren’t yours! There’s no good reason to take other people’s stuff out of their cars. If you see someone doing it, or their children, report them to event directors.
Don’t Be a Negative Nancy
There’s going to be a lot of impressive vehicles at car cruise-ins…and not-so-impressive ones. If a car isn’t up to your standards, or if you’re just not a fan of the model, don’t mock it. And don’t be a jerk by harping on the flaws of a perfectly good car that someone put love and effort into. You never know if someone walking nearby is the owner of it.
Respect Surrounding Businesses
Don’t just show up, walk around, and leave if local businesses are hosting the event. They didn’t have to sponsor or organize the event, so give them your time, attention, and business in return. Go to their booths, buy some of their food, and at least treat nearby non-participating businesses with respect. Don’t make this event the last one.
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Aaron is unashamed to be a native Clevelander and the proud driver of a Hyundai Veloster Turbo (which recently replaced his 1995 Saturn SC-2). He gleefully utilizes his background in theater, literature, and communication to dramatically recite his own articles to nearby youth. Mr. Widmar happily resides in Dayton, Ohio with his magnificent wife, Vicki, but is often on the road with her exploring new destinations. Aaron has high aspirations for his writing career but often gets distracted pondering the profound nature of the human condition and forgets what he was writing… See more articles by Aaron.