Keith’s Blog: Stay Home and Plan

We are in uncharted waters. No one can predict what the next weeks or month will bring. It’s a time of uncertainty for all of us.

I suggest we all use this quiet time to chart out the next decade with our cars.

Look at all the activities you are interested in — and decide which ones you want to attend.

Also, think about which events would be fun to attend with your children and/or grandchildren. You’ve got plenty of cars, so loan them one and have the family time of your life.

For example, if you’ve decided it’s time to go on some high-line vintage tours, pick the ones you are most interested in. These included the fabled Colorado Grand, the Copperstate 1000 and our own SCM 1000.

Pick out the ones you want to attend and put them into your 10-year grid. Splurge and sign up for two entries for you and your family.  You will never regret it, and the cost will be miniscule compared to the memories you will create.

Then there are the concours. Starting with Pebble and working through Amelia, Hilton Head and more. If you’ve never been to any of these events you should start your planning now.

I reserve the condo I stay in at Pebble a year in advance.  You should be doing the same with major events.

Add in the museums you should visit, including the Petersen and the America’s Car Museum, the LeMay.

Find out when and where the national conventions of the marques you favor are held — and start planning. For instance, the national convention of the Volvo Club of America is being held here in Portland, OR, this July (I am one of the speakers), so I have marked that on my calendar.

Planning to attend a national convention gives you one more reason to exercise your classic and meet those who share your addiction to these wonderful old cars.

Join and participate in your local club events. The Alfa Romeo Owners of Oregon meet monthly, with a guest speaker. They also host low-key rallies and tours. Bradley has been going on them since he was a toddler.

Make your own trips with some buddies. Google “Scenic Byways of Oregon” (or any state) and see what comes up.  Pick out a fun three- or four day-route, enlist some like-minded car friends and head out.

The routes of large touring events are often restricted, as they need hotels with the necessary 50 – 100 rooms and restaurant facilities. If you only need three or four rooms — or seats at dinner — your options increase dramatically.

There’s no getting around the self-quarantine necessary today, as the world wrestles with the Coronavirus.

Take this time to make up your own 10-year bucket list for the things you plan to do with your cars and the people closest to you. Then when things settle down, put the plan into action.

Keith Martin

Keith Martin has been involved with the collector car hobby for more than 30 years. As a writer, publisher, television commentator and enthusiast, he is constantly on the go, meeting collectors and getting involved in their activities throughout the world. He is the founder and publisher of the monthly Sports Car Market and bi-monthly American Car Collector magazines, has written for the New York Times, Automobile, AutoWeek, Road & Track and other publications, is an emcee for numerous concours, and has his own show, “What’s My Car Worth,” shown on Velocity.

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