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Auto Fest organizers ready to welcome back its show
The Frankenmuth Auto Fest is back for 2021, one year after being interrupted by COVID-19.
The 30th annual celebration of automobiles will take place Friday through Sunday, September 10-12, with all activities originating in Heritage Park. Saturday, September 11, also is the 20th anniversary of the events of September 11, 2001.
Some 540 persons volunteer for the Auto Fest, which has raised over $1.8 million over the past 12 years. Show participants come from all over, including a dozen states, plus all of Michigan and parts of Canada.
Friday, September 10 kicks off the three-day festival with registration at Schaefer & Bierlein Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram, at the corner of Weiss Street and Curtis Road beginning at 8am. In addition to registration, Heritage Park will open with spectators entering at the main gate only. The Frankenmuth Lions Club will also have a pancake breakfast in the Lion Haus in the park.
Food and vehicle vendors will also be open all day in the park, and an arts and crafts show will take place behind the Frankenmuth Historical Museum.
Friday also marks one of the festival’s most popular events, the Big Block Party on South Main Street. Main Street closes at 4pm from Genesee Street to Jefferson Street, with over 2,000 vintage and classic cars and trucks parked on the street from 5-10pm.
Car owners may park their vehicles on the side streets along Main Street starting Friday afternoon. The Frankenmuth Police, along with the festival’s “Street Corner Buddies” will assist in getting the vehicles parked in an orderly fashion and the vehicles must vacate Main Street starting at 10pm.
Music, entertainment, and other vendors will set up to accommodate the masses, who venture up and down Main Street to view the cars.
For local sports fans, the Frankenmuth varsity football team will travel to Birch Run for a 7pm contest. Be ready to make plans to avoid Main Street when heading south to Birch Run.
While Friday returns back to normal, Saturday’s agenda will be altered due to COVID-19.
“Our committee has made the decision to continue the planning of the 2021 Frankenmuth Auto Fest. We have made the difficult decision to no longer have the Music Pavilion on Saturday night; however, as of right now, all other parts of our show will operate like previous years,” Auto Fest spokesman Tony D'Anna said.
Action switches to Heritage Park Saturday with registration resuming at Schaefer & Bierlein, the park opening at all gates and the Lions Club pancake breakfast, all starting at 8am. There will be children’s activities from noon until 2pm.
The day is capped off with a fireworks display at 9:45pm, sponsored by Frankenmuth Insurance.
All three days, a $50 Kroger gas card giveaway every 15 minutes. Friday’s giveaways will take place 9am to 3pm, Saturday 9am to 4pm and Sunday, 9am until 1pm, the card value jumps to $100.
Super Sunday 2021 will welcome all ages of show cars from 1988 to 2021. Registration, the park and the pancake breakfast will all begin at 8am. Super Sunday vehicles are only eligible on Sunday.
Cruisers for Christ will host a non-denominational church service beginning at 9am in the Jaycee Pavilion of Heritage Park.
The Awards Ceremony is set for 1pm with some patriotic and military ties. Over 60 authentic German steins will be awarded, by category, from fellow car enthusiasts. Car jackets are given to the top 25 choices. These vehicles are not judged.
Dash plaques will be handed out to the first 2,000 entries. Pre-registration is $25 per vehicle until Tuesday, August 31. The cost at the gate Friday through Sunday is $30. There is a value package for $40, which includes a t-shirt. The costs include two weekend wristbands, a window cling and a goodie bag.
Spectator admission is $10 for a one-day pass or $20 for a three-day pass. Children ages 12 and under are admitted free. Sunday only is $5 per person. Shuttle busses to the park will be available 8am until 6pm on Saturday.
The 2021 Auto Fest sponsors include Auto Value Bumper to Bumper Auto Parts and Service, McDonald’s of Frankenmuth, Frankenmuth Insurance, Covenant HealthCare, Horizon Bank, Wolgast Corporation, Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland, Schaefer & Bierlein, Tri-Star Bank, Star of the West Milling Company, Kroger Store, ABC TV-12, Frankenmuth Rotary Club, Mike Young Buick GMC, Eastern Asphalt and Custom Personalized Lawn Care.
All profits go to local charities. Auto Fest is the largest fundraiser for the Frankenmuth Noon Rotary Club, Lions Club, Frankenmuth Legion Post #150, Frankenmuth VFW Post #2729 and Michigan Heroes Museum. Other area-based charities who have benefited include the Frankenmuth Athletic Association, Saginaw County Toys for Tots, Frankenmuth High School Band, Frankenmuth Police and Fire Departments, Birch Run Rotary Club, Blessed Trinity Catholic Church, Immanuel Lutheran Church, Frankentrost and FHS Scholarship Fund.
In Saginaw, Covenant Healthcare pediatrics unit and McNally House have been given donations as well as Ronald McDonald House of Grand Rapids.
For more information, visit www.frankenmuthautofest.net or call 989-652-6964.