I've been to the past 3 events (canton, austin, asheville) and they are a blast!
Daily cruises on amazing roads, great people to meet and make friends, lots of good food.. etc
This year in ashville not only did we have several great runs planned but we also participated in a haunted pub crawl, a drive in movie, a carnival day, a car show.. etc you can also plan things on your own in the evenings or with friends you will meet at the event.
It's a load of fun and I'm really sad I might miss the event in Flagstaff this year.
In addition to what others have said, there are many really interesting things to do and see in the area - e.g., Grand Canyon, Sedona and Oak Creek Canyon, the meteor crater, the twistys on Hwy 191, Jerome, etc.
I think the best part of a Nationals event is meeting a LOT of great, friendly people that all share a common interest, and spending several days having all kinds of fun with our cars. We went to our first event in Austin, and are still in touch with quite a few of the people we met there-Can't wait for June to get here!!!
A great motorsports and automobile enthusiasts tradition, "Bench Racing" is the art of storytelling at its best. Although sometimes less than 100% factual, the stories are always entertaining. We've assembled a collection here and encourage any and all contributions. The truth is optional.
We went on our first run with the PNW Roadsters to Clarkston Washington last summer. We had an absolutely fantastic time and in fact are still talking about it. We can hardly wait for Flagstaff. Hope to see you there.
Any room for a couple youngsters?? Id sure like to come the next time its eastern US!! Im sure I can talk her into coming (im 25, shes 24) ...would love to meet all the people I have been frustrating with questions this whole year (almost) of ownership
Little late to the comments party but I'd like to add if they are anything like the Fiero events I used to attend I think the words to remember is; low-key. Even boring if you tend to be the type of person who enjoys being on the go all the time. They aren't like national multi-brand, or the more popular make type of car shows. It's more about sitting and relaxing, or really taking the time to look at mods, and allowing yourself to enjoy how one car can bring so many people from so many walks of life together. Along with knowing you share a common interest in these days where it sometime feels like no one seems to have (or enjoy) the same interest in life as you do.
Also, because these types of events tend to be very laid-back (except for the organizers or volunteers) owners have more time to talk and explain the modifications they've made to their cars without being distracted by the craziness of a large event where it seems like everyone is trying to do and see as much as they can in as little time as they can.
However, I think the best part of going to these types of shows is seeing how much some folks are constantly making improvements to the platform over the years. Whether it be hardware or cosmetics related, it really makes you wonder...if only. If only the platform would have survived, if only the models were still in production, if only someone within GM was around to see all the improvements being done by enthusiasts and realize that the platform's that had been so easily thrown away was a major marketing mistake and the ideas and enthusiasm being seen could be used to influenced the next generation of platforms, along with establishing a long-term customer base (Think;Miata's upcoming 25th silver anniversary in 2014).
That's the real fun, understanding you know there is a lot of potential in a platform that others didn't or don't realize.
If you have the chance to attend, you should go. This year or any year!
For those who like to :driving: get out and hit the pavement, the Nationals offer the chance to get with other enthusiasts and experience some nice country roads. Often there are a number of run options each day. Back in 2011 at the event here in Texas we had them scheduled Tuesday through Friday. As a run leader I had groups of between 10 & 20 cars going out on 5-hour tours of spirited driving each day. Suffice it to say that there is always something for everybody, be that slamming through the gears, chatting with fellow travellers about our cars, and even bench racing & fish stories.