What I’ll miss most about not being in Monterey this week

What I’ll miss most about not being in Monterey this week

Final 12 months Bentleys had been featured on the Pebble Seaside Concours d’Magnificence, however this 12 months it and different Monterey Automotive Week occasions have been canceled by the coronavirus pandemic | Pictures by Larry Edsall

Based on my calendar, I ought to be selecting Bob Golfen up this morning at Las Vegas’ McCarran Worldwide Airport after which driving to Salinas, California, to test right into a motel for the night time. Then, on Monday morning, we’d drive previous WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca on our solution to test in to our dwelling for the following week, that week being Monterey Automotive Week.

However the coronavirus pandemic has compelled cancelation of Monterey Car Week and our annual trek from the desert to Monterey Bay. Amongst different issues, that cancelation means no banter as we drive alongside; no arguing about radio stations; no fixing of the world’s issues; no tacos on the Twenty Mule Cafe in Boron, California; no drive by almond groves and vineyards; no mid-afternoon pit cease at Blackwells Nook, the place James Dean stopped to purchase cigarettes moments earlier than his deadly collision just some miles to the west that fateful day in September 1955.

And that record is simply what I’ll miss from the drive simply to get there. Listed below are among the issues I’ll miss about lacking Monterey Automotive Week for the primary time in latest reminiscence:

Traditional Motorsports Cruise-In in Pacific Grove (above and under)

The automotive exhibits in Pacific Grove — I’ve actually fallen for Pacific Grove, that pleasant however ignored neighborhood out of that tip of the peninsula, the place creator John Steinbeck had his residence. The city has a broad, boulevard-style predominant avenue, Lighthouse Avenue, lined with retailers and cafes and preferrred for strolling. On three events throughout the week, Lighthouse Avenue is closed to site visitors and serves as a venue for automotive exhibits. And never simply automotive exhibits however automotive exhibits you’ll be able to attend with out admission charges. And these exhibits — the Traditional Motorsports Cruise-In, the Little Automotive Present and the Kiwanis concours and rally — are price attending.

Driving — I keep away from Freeway 1 and its congestion each time attainable, however I’ve been going to Monterey lengthy sufficient to have discovered some native alternate options routs. I’ve additionally discovered the again method into Pebble Seaside (I’m not sharing, however I’ll recommend that you simply drive Carmel Valley Street and its tributaries east of the intersection with the Laureles Grade). Talking of The Laureles Grade, it’s a Grade A drive, offered you don’t get caught behind a motor dwelling or supply truck. Additionally, put the home windows or high down and take within the sights and sounds and ocean smells of 17 Miles Drive, and when you haven’t achieved it earlier than, you actually do have to drive the coast freeway to Huge Sur and again. And, OK, I’ll admit it, I additionally get pleasure from driving by the big-top tent within the Fisherman’s Wharf parking zone and listening to Drew Alcazar’s voice over the PA system shouting “Bought! Bought! Bought!” as a automotive clears the Russo and Steele public sale block.

Pebble Seaside Traditional Automotive Discussion board — Staged for the previous few years on the Inn at Spanish Bay, the Discussion board presents panel discussions and interviews with key figures and on well timed topics of curiosity within the automotive and collector automotive worlds.

Tour d’Magnificence places concours automobiles on common roads for anybody to understand | Tour images by Howard Koby

The Pebble Seaside Tour d’Magnificence — It is going to value you a pair hundred {dollars} to crowd your method onto the 18th fairway of the Pebble Seaside Golf Hyperlinks for the concours d’magnificence, however a couple of days earlier you’ll be able to plop your folding chair alongside the route for the tour d’magnificence and watch those self same automobiles drive by as they tour the peninsula. That’s proper, you’ll be able to see them in movement, not parked. Not solely is it free, nevertheless it’s the very best present of the whole week.

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