A migration of cars will make their way to Radium Hot Springs this weekend for the 29th annual Radium Show & Shine. Perched along the grassy stage, hundreds of vehicles will preen in the sun, at the ready for a gaggle of gawkers to swoop and swoon over the classic, cute, and cool cars.
Coming from as near as up the street and as far as the southern U.S. and into eastern Canada, cars flock to The Springs Golf Course for the crown event of the fall in the Columbia Valley. Rows upon rows of chrome rims, souped up undersides and shined up topsides nest for the crowds. Organizers estimate as many as 1,000 vehicles could land in the Valley for the full weekend of activities, drawing anywhere from 2,000 to 8,000 visitors.
Vicki Roberts, Columbia Valley Classics president, says plans are coming along well for the event, which launches Friday, September 14th with Market & Music on Main at the Radium Hot Springs Visitor Centre from 4-8 p.m.
Ms. Roberts says one big change this year is registration at the newly opened Radium Hot Springs Centre. While registration doesn’t open until Friday, Ms. Roberts says in years past they’ve had cars come from all over North America and visitors from around the world.
“It’s a good atmosphere,” Ms. Roberts describes. “People like to come out and see what other people take pride in.”
The timing seems to work well for car owners and tourists to converge, and the weather usually cooperates for the outdoor event, she continues.
Be sure to take in the pancake breakfast Saturday morning, from 7-10:30 a.m. Radium Hot Springs firefighters will be on hand flipping pancakes for the meal, which raises funds for fire department equipment. For $7, you get pancakes, sausages, coffee, and water or juice. Breakfast will be served at the new Radium Hot Springs Centre.
Christy Aerosmith oversees the vendor coordinating for the car show. She assures that after breakfast, there will be plenty of food options for hungry crowds throughout the day, including traditional fair food like hot dogs and fries, corn dogs, mini donuts, and cotton candy, to crepes, Italian, perogies, even bannock. There’s also plenty of shopping on-site to complement the many Radium stores open for business, selling car collectibles, insurance, nostalgic items, fancy light-up signs and more.
Kara Cassidy, marketing administrator for Tourism Radium Hot Springs, says it is always a fun weekend to come to Radium.
“You’ve got the people lined up on the street in lawn-chairs watching the cars drive by, they do their little laps through town … the whole atmosphere of the community changes,” says Ms. Cassidy. “It adds to the vibrancy of the community.”
So gather your brood, spread your wings and fly to the Columbia Valley Classics Car Show this weekend.