This weekend, hundreds of car enthusiasts will come together at Beech Bend Park to show off and race their Camaros.
CamaroFest is a yearly gathering that has been stationed in Bowling Green for several years, according to Joe Bella, one of the event’s organizers.
“We like to think that we’re the largest gathering of late model Camaros in the country,” he said.
Bella defined “late model Camaro” as any Camaro produced after Chevrolet put new Camaros back on the market in 2010 while also saying that older Camaros and other General Motors cars like Corvettes will be present as well.
“If you have anything General Motors that goes fast, we’re happy to have you,” he said.
Bella said CamaroFest is a car show mixed in with competitive motorsports.
“We like to think we’re a little different in that way,” he said. “These cars are really well tuned for performance. It’s a social gathering but the social aspect is around those races.”
CamaroFest runs from 8 a.m. to roughly 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Bella said.
Additionally, there will be a few other events connected with CamaroFest like the Parking Lot Party at Sloan Convention Center’s parking lot from 7 p.m. to midnight Friday and a cruise from the National Corvette Museum to Mammoth Cave National Park, which begins Sunday at 10:30 a.m.
A schedule of events is available on camarofest.org.
Admission is $20 at the gate for a one-day pass and $30 for a two-day pass, Bella said.
Additionally, people can register for drag racing and autocross events for $120 at the event, though a proper helmet is required, Bella said.
CamaroFest began as a gathering of Camaro enthusiasts in 2010, when Chevrolet put the Camaro back on the market eight years after halting production of the car, he said.
“The new car kind of reenergized the community,” he said.
The first CamaroFest was held in Valdosta, Ga., with the expectation that it would be a small event bringing together Camaro fans mainly from Georgia and Florida.
“Folks from all over, I’m talking California, Canada, were wanting to come,” he said.
For several years, CamaroFest moved around before finding Bowling Green, Bella said, adding that the event has been based in Bowling Green for the last few years because of the city’s central location, the facilities at Beech Bend Park and its automotive culture.
“We found it was a hard argument to move it again,” he said. “It was just that nice.”