The City of White Rock is eyeing the visitor appeal of vintage and classic cars and hot rods.
If Semiahmoo First Nation doesn’t want to host it at Semiahmoo Park in future, the city would be more than happy to have the annual West Coasters Car Show as a public-drawing attraction for the uptown area.
That’s the conclusion of a staff report received for information by White Rock council on May 30.
In his report, recreation and culture director Eric Stepura suggested the event – which usually attracts some 500 antique and classic cars and hot rods – would be a good fit with the White Rock Farmers Market, The White Rock Blues and Jazz Festival, the White Rock Arts Festival, the Pride Family Day Festival and other events aimed at increasing “the uptown area’s reputation as an attractive and vibrant area to shop and visit.”
The summer event is just restarting for 2022 after being cancelled for two years due to COVID-19 measures, Stepura said, and the West Coasters club had contacted the city in early April, when SFN had not yet confirmed the usual Semiahmoo Park site would be available.
That confirmation has since been received, so the show is going ahead as usual at Semiahmoo Park on July 31.
The city had a provisional plan to accommodate the show on the streets around White Rock Elementary (the same area usually utilized during the Tour de White Rock) on July 31, followed by a potential parade on Marine Drive to coincide with the Sea Festival and Semiahmoo Days festivities the same day.
But Stepura’s report suggest the city might entertain inviting the West Coasters Car Show to be a ‘class B’ (city supported) event in 2023, which would require budgeting up to $15,000 in the 2023 or future financial plan to cover such items such as traffic control, road closures and marketing.
“We all knew, I think, that it would be a ‘Hail Mary’ (pass) to try to pull it off this year,” Coun. David Chesney commented. “But I’m happy that this is now on the books, and certainly a class B event in the coming year would be appropriate.”
Chesney noted that Langley’s Custom Car and Hot Rod Show, now relocated to Aldergrove, “draws upwards of 100,000 people to the single-day event.”
“I think it would be a tremendous event for the City of White Rock and one that is relatively easy to adopt by using the same footprint as the Tour de White Rock,” he said.