“One Big Motor Loving Family” | Adirondack Nationals 2019

“One Big Motor Loving Family” | Adirondack Nationals 2019

(Submitted By: C.J. McCann)

I could barely pick my jaw up off the concrete sidewalk before focusing and snapping this picture. What came out of my mouth was nothing I ever imagined I would exclaim to a stranger:

“That red is hot!” 

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A 1950 Pontiac Chieftain. Restored to perfection from what it looked like. It was making a first debut to the 31st Adirondack Nationals Car ShowThe expression of the driver that followed from me essentially cat-calling their car? Brighter than the car itself.

My mother always told me she wanted a “candy apple red” car. I guess the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree anymore, especially after seeing such a well done paint job. I was moved. The Adirondack Nationals Car Show ran for it is 31st year in Lake George, NY. The circular stickers are references that many collectors, mechanics, and gear-heads display with pride. It shows the years they have taken a particular car to the show.

People from all over the country drive and tow their automobiles to admire, and be admired. Antiques, hotrods, rat-rods, and customs can be found all over Canada Street. Lake George considers this event to be an end to the Summer season. The show features awards, vendors, and nightly parades.


Someone’s pride and joy is constantly being validated. Head turns, nods of approval, smiles, and exclamations fill streets. Something else that fills the streets is the sweet excitement of burning rubber.  Around 4:30 PM on Friday, “Burnout Hill” earned it’s nickname. Located in front of DJ’s Nightclub and new restaurant Gaslight, crowds formed as the rubber burned. A residual blanket of smoke surrounded the bustling businesses. It was the time and place to be at this car show!

To perform a burnout, the driver skillfully holds the car in place. Simultaneously working the gas pedal and brake pad to spin the back tires on the pavement. This friction literally burns rubber – the bigger and louder your engine and burnout, the better. Lake George Village doesn’t share the same passion for tire marks as it’s event goers, and the burnout session ended around 6:00 PM when local law enforcement arrived at the scene. Sorry Mayor Blaise!

I asked around and found that many attendees want the event to feature a drag racing strip. They explained how a drag strip would allow the burnouts and races to be done in a safer, more controlled environment. Unfortunately, there seems to be no sign of the town making moves in that direction. Petition, anyone? One of the largest defining factors of the show is how friendly the participants, attendees, and vendors are. A true sense of companionship takes over, as gear-heads from all over the country meet in the little lake town. You are guaranteed one similarity when attending such an event: a passion for cars.  I sat down for breakfast at The Breakfast Spot, a popular 1940’s themed breakfast joint and it didn’t take long before conversations with a stranger ensued. 

“I love this car show because I’m in the most beautiful place I’ve ever been, with some of the most beautiful cars I’ve ever seen. Events like car shows make you feel like you are apart of one big motor loving family” were the words of the woman at the table next to me. While this car show weekend has come to a conclusion, the love these people carry for the craft is constant all year round. We’ll see you on the strip in 2020!



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