Car owners show off the hydraulics on a 1985 Buick Regal at Gasoline Alley in Utica last year. This year’s Gasoline Alley car show, gas show and swap meet will take place Aug. 11.

Car owners show off the hydraulics on a 1985 Buick Regal at Gasoline Alley in Utica last year. This year’s Gasoline Alley car show, gas show and swap meet will take place Aug. 11.

File photo by Erin Sanchez


Gasoline Alley car show to return to Utica this Saturday

By: Kara Szymanski | Shelby - Utica News | Published August 6, 2018

UTICA — Fire up your engines for the Gasoline Alley car show this weekend.

The car show, hosted by the Utica Parks and Recreation Commission, will take place from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Aug. 11 along Auburn Road from the Utica Public Library to Cass Avenue.

In addition, a gas show and swap meet will be located in the Utica Fire Department parking lot. The event also will feature beer and wine, entertainment, food trucks and vendors.

The car show will have many different types of cars, including dragsters and hot rods.

“You name it, they come. Mustangs are my favorites, and you see them from the 1964s on. I believe the dragsters will be out again, and hopefully the lowrider cars (that have hydraulics and bounce up and down) come back. They are great to watch. They are having a hydroboat that will be on display,” said Utica Deputy Clerk Nancy Carter.

The gas show will include everything that has to do with vintage gas and oil memorabilia. The swap meet will feature various dealers selling gas pumps, car parts and auto-related memorabilia.

Meghan Michelon, a partner with her dad in running the event, said the event will feature all different types of car-related merchandise.

“The swap meet will have many vendors who sell antique automobile, gas, and oil goods. There will also be a few food vendors — ice cream, baked goods, one or two food trucks. We really limit the food vendors because we like to encourage our attendees to patronize our great local restaurants. A lot of them run specials on the day of the show, and some even offer carryout,” Michelon said in an email.

Her dad has run the car show for many years, and every year it has grown more and more, although he was not the one to start the event.

“My dad did not start the car show, but was given the opportunity to run the show by the previous mayor, (Jacqueline) Noonan. He enjoys cars and loves the community, so this is a great way to get involved and give back,” stated Michelon.

“It has gone from a super small local car show to a widespread event, which now includes a swap meet. The swap meet draws people from all over the state. There is also great attractions for all to see, including drag cars, funny cars, monster trucks, and much more,” she said.

There will be a variety of old cars to view, including original restorations spanning the 1930s through the 1990s.

There will also be vendors on-site selling car-related products, such as Big Cheese Productions, from Brighton. Terry Hubert, the owner, has been participating in the event for five years and will be at the car show this year selling his custom-made neon lights, gas pumps, Fiberglas statues, Coke machines and more.

“Rick Michelin reached out and asked us to become part of the car show, and of course we said yes, because who doesn’t like car shows?” said Hubert.

“It’s a great show and a great atmosphere. It’s family-oriented and there is always good food. Utica is a nice town too,” he said.

Mark Ricketts, a resident, firefighter of 30 years, car show attendee and volunteer, has been participating in the car show since the event started. He will be bringing three of his own cars to the event to show, including a 1933 Ford, a 1969 Plymouth Barracuda and a T-bucket.

As a volunteer at the car show, Ricketts shares duties of show parking and organizing. Ricketts said that a tower truck from the Fire Department will be in attendance at the event.

The firefighters will also 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 general well-being for burn-injured children.

Ricketts shared how he thinks the car show has evolved to what it is today.

“The show has evolved into a larger and much more different car show with less local cars and more expensive types of cars. I look forward to everyone coming out, seeing the cars, and sharing their car memories and stories,” said Ricketts in a phone call.

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

Participation in the car show as a car registrant costs $15. Participation as a swap meet vendor costs $25, and $20 for each additional spot. Setup for the event will be from 5 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 10. The car show benefits the American Cancer Society.

According to the city, there are 200-300 cars that are expected to participate, as long as the weather works out.

Local businesses will be open during the event. Some will even have specials.

There will be different types of food trucks, such as Imperial House and Dilla’s Delights. There will also be a DJ for music.

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.

For more information or to register for the car show, visit www.utciagasolinealley.com.