SST CAR SHOW HOST RICK WALKER
INTERVIEWS PETE VICARI OF VICARI AUCTIONS
In the small town of Nocona Texas they're gearing up for their biggest event of the year...an even that has in fact saved this town from near extinction....the "CRUISN NOCONA CAR SHOW"....May 4th to 6th.
Just a few years ago Nocoa, was on the ropes. The towns economy was on its last legs, after its main employers had laid off workers....a sign of the times.
Not all was lost though, because community spirit and a community love of classic automobiles prevailed. Community leaders got together and organized the Nocona Car Show - Cruisin Nocona. The story was inspiring so the SST Car Show Crew took to the highway and came to experience some Nocona hospitality first hand.
BURNOUT CONTEST AT
"CRUISIN NOCONA CAR SHOW"
It seemed a natural fit for this small town, because one of its foremost citizen's Peter Horton was a classic car collector. Mr. Horton is a successful business person, who has made quite a fortune in the oil industry and just a few short years ago he began buying cars with Vicari Auctions. Today he has two 50's era buildings - old car dealerships - filled with 120 of the nicest and rarest classic cars you'll find anywhere.
Mr. Horton has become one of Vicari auction's most important customers, and when the call was made, Pete Vicari accepted an invitation to bring an auction to Nocona and make it a big part of the car show weekend.
"It is very important to the community. Their biggest industry here was sent to Mexico and they all lost their jobs here," said Pete Vicari. "I mean six years ago you could have bought this whole town for about 100-thousand dollars".
VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS NOCOA TEXAS ATTRACTIONS
That is not the case today. The car show combined with the Horton Classic Car Musuem, and the Vicari Classic Car Auction have turned Nocona into the "Classic Car Captial of Texas". Nocona is located about an hour Northwest of Dallas.
"I'm from the south and they have some amazing southern hospitality here," said Pete Vicari. "It's just got a whole new life to the town. People come from all over, and we even have a car club coming in from Dallas, and that will bring 300 people alone."
The 2017 edition of Cruisin Nocona is just around the corner. The three day event will consist of a Classic Car Poker Cruise...daily car show, and two full days of classic car auctions. It all start May 4th with Mayor Robert Fenoglio hosting the "starting of the engines". That will be followed by a "Parade of Classic Cars".
This will be the fifth year for Vicari Auctions in Nocona and Pete Vicari says it's a huge event that fills up hotels not only in Nocona but in nearby towns too.
The car show has transformed Nocona from a struggling community, into a vibrant new tourist destination. New hotels, and restaurants have opened and the main street welcomes visitors through the day with activities and in the evening with cafes and twinkling lights that line the main drag.
The Nocona event is held the first week of May, and that means it's an event that comes before outdoor car shows really kick off in northern states and in Canada where the weather is colder. Community leaders in Nocona believe that leaves a lot of room for growth, because many believe they will be able to attract growing numbers of car enthusiasts from colder states and Canada with their event, which is seen by some as a prelude to car show season. The auction also gives northern car hunters an opportunity to bid on rust free southern U.S. cars.
SST CAR SHOW EPISODE
WITH 2016 NOCONA TEXAS CAR SHOW HIGHLIGHTS
The SST Car Show crew was excited to be part of the 2016 Nocona Car Show and the crew is pumped to return to the event in 2017. The SST Car Show Crew also stopped by during the Nocona Mari Gras to take in their parade which featured some area clubs including one of the biggest Corvette Clubs in the U.S. The Mardi Gras event is another attraction that was created following the success of the Cruisin Nocona event, and that growth is still evident in rising real estate prices and investment in the community. Nocona was also voted the "Most Fun Small Town In America".
"These cars are totally rust free," said Pete Vicari. "We always have a great selection of vehicles, including some rare cars here in Nocona. They really understand tourism here, and they know how to welcome people. I talk to people and when they come to Nocona they say they love the place, because it's so friendly and they can park their car and really it's a small town so they can walk anywhere they want to go."