The Utica car show Gasoline Alley will feature many different types of cars, including dragsters, hot rods and emergency vehicles.

The Utica car show Gasoline Alley will feature many different types of cars, including dragsters, hot rods and emergency vehicles.

Photo provided by Gus Calandrino

Gasoline Alley car show to return to downtown Utica

By: Kara Szymanski | Shelby - Utica News | Published July 28, 2021


UTICA — Utica’s annual Gasoline Alley car show has returned once again after a one-year break due to the coronavirus pandemic.

From 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Aug. 14, classic cars will take over downtown Utica along Auburn Road from the Utica Public Library to Cass Avenue.

The car show, hosted by the Utica Parks and Recreation Commission, will feature many different types of cars, including dragsters, hot rods and emergency vehicles.

Meghan Michelon, one of the owners of USA Tire in Utica and the organizer of the event as part of the Parks and Recreation Commission, said Gasoline Alley is a fun time out for car enthusiasts while also benefiting a good cause.

“Cars will be parked on a first-come, first-served basis all along Auburn Road in downtown Utica. We would also like to highlight that this is a city of Utica Parks and Recs event, and it also benefits the American Cancer Society,” she said via email.

In addition, a gas show and swap meet will be located in the Utica Fire Department parking lot, 7609 Auburn Road. Guests are encouraged to patronize the local bars/restaurants.

At the swap meet, people can buy and sell various automotive and “petroliana” goods, which are collectibles related to gas stations and the petroleum industry.

The gas show will include everything that has to do with vintage gas and oil memorabilia.

USA Tire will also be open during the event with even more fun items to see.

There will be a variety of old cars to view from the 1930s through the 1990s.

Admission to the car show, swap meet and gas show is free.

Firefighters will have a fire boot out at the event to collect any donations to support the Great Lakes Burn Camp. The camp promotes healing, self-esteem, confidence and the general well-being of burn-injured children.

For those interested in participating in the car show as a car registrant, entry costs $20. Participation as a swap meet vendor costs $25, and it costs $20 for each additional spot. There is no registration required this year.

Setup for the event will be held from 5 to 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 13.

The number of vehicles on display will depend on the weather. About 300 vehicles participated in 2019.

Local businesses will be open during the event, and some will even have specials. There will also be a DJ for music.

Utica Mayor Gus Calandrino said that many residents have been asking about when the car show would return.

“We are very pleased to be able to have the Utica Gasoline Alley car show this year after having to cancel it last year due to COVID-19. This is one of the most popular events in the city, and many residents have contacted me, hoping it would return this year,” he said in an email.

He said he would like to thank all those who make the event possible.

“I’d like to thank Rick and Meghan from USA Tire, Utica Parks and Rec, and all the volunteers who help make this event a great success. Before the pandemic, the attendance for this show was steadily growing every year. We’re anticipating a huge crowd, as people are returning to normal and looking for fun, family-friendly events to enjoy this summer,” Calandrino said.

The car show event will require road closures affecting a portion of Auburn Road going into downtown Utica. Parking will be available across from Jimmy John’s Field and in the parking lot off McClellan Street.