It may still be more than two years down the road, but Indiana’s “City of Firsts” will put its automotive heritage on display during a week-long celebration held in conjunction with the state’s Bicentennial in 2016.
The Kokomo Automotive Museum has been endorsed by the Indiana Bicentennial Commission to host a weeklong celebration. The celebration, which has not yet been pinned down for a specific date, will likely be either the second or final week in September.
It will conclude with three days of special events in the city, from Friday through Sunday, highlighting Kokomo’s automotive heritage with three special car shows featuring many automobiles manufactured in Indiana.
Kokomo Automotive Museum Director of Development Jeffrey Shively said the museum and city will not receive funding from the state for the event, but will instead be a part of a statewide celebration during the Bicentennial that highlights each of the state’s 92 counties with special events.
“Car buffs are going to want to come to this show,” Shively said. “We’d like to be able to show people that this is the place to come for a big car show.”
Shively stressed the museum is only in the planning stages for the event, but said the celebration will likely begin with a three-day statewide driving tour featuring as many unique automobiles as possible to create a caravan traveling to different parts of the state with automotive history.
After the driving tour concludes, Shively said, there are plans for three events including “The Haynes-Apperson Reunion,” which will aim to attract owners of Haynes-Apperson automobiles to meet and greet in Kokomo.
“There are around 150 Haynes-Apperson automobiles left in the world,” Shively said. “We want to bring as many [cars] as we can back and have the owners meet each other. It will be a chance for a lot of people to hear what a 110 (to) 120-year-old car sounds like running.”