By Lauren Wong
This story was original posted on Escape With Vagary.
I’m not sure what I was expecting when I purchased tickets for “the World’s Greatest Collector Car Auction,” but I was blown away. My dad, with his love for old cars, flew in from Chicago to join me as I attended the first day of the Auction. For as long as I can remember he’s had a 1970s MG convertible sitting in the garage of my childhood home. I’d know we were nearing the end of winter when I’d hear him starting up the engine of his little green car, making the whole garage and street smell like gasoline.
We’d take it to our town’s car show every summer. He always had a mini replica of his car model displayed on the dashboard as locals walked the streets of downtown checking out all the cars. I’ve never been big into cars, but some of my favorite childhood memories are riding around town, the top down as I try to control my blowing hair, while he’d beep his horn and rev the engine as we passed by our neighbors.
I think my favorite part of the event was seeing how excited he got. So many luxury and antique cars, every color of the rainbow, glistening, begging to catch your eye. It’s like when you walk into a huge mall and there’s so much to look at you get overwhelmed, but in an exciting way. We spent hours there and still I felt like we barely made a dent in seeing all they had to offer.
The Scottsdale 2022 event took place Jan. 22 – 30. The second you pass security and walk in you’re hit with rows upon rows of every type of car that you can think of. Some, I’ve never even heard of. Everything from old classics to the newest models all slick and polished on display.
It wasn’t just cars, there were planes, dozens of food vendors, and pop up stands everywhere you looked. From painters to people selling home goods, jewelry, and stadium replicas of all your favorite sports teams. You could buy antique neon signs, a swinging chair for your backyard, self-heating hand warmers; literally everything you can think of and then some.
Once he landed back home, my dad was sending pictures in our family group chat everyday as he watched, from Illinois, the live stream of the rest of the auction. Every single call I answered from him for the whole next week was him just spitting out numbers as fast as he could, pretending to be the auctioneer.
Even if you’re not a huge fan of cars I would 100% recommend checking it out. Tickets aren’t expensive to get in and you’ll truly be amazed at how well put together the event is and just how many different types of cars exist.
This year marked the company’s 50th anniversary celebration and the Barrett-Jackson Auction helped raise more than $8.8 million dollars for charity. If you want to find more information about the make and models of the cars that were showcased and how much they went for, check out their website.
If you missed out on this year’s event, there’s always next year (I know my dad’s already counting down the days.)