Corvette Festival is this weekend

May 17, 2023 at 05:47 pm by Observer-Review

WATKINS GLEN--The village of Watkins Glen is sponsoring the inaugural Watkins Glen Corvette Festival May 20 and May 21, recognizing that the Corvette got its start in Watkins Glen.
This year marks the 70th anniversary of the Corvette – originally designed and engineered by Harley Earl who was inspired by attending races in 1951 at the Glen. In 1953 the first Corvette appeared at the races in Watkins Glen and subsequently became known as the “American Sportscar.”
On Saturday, nearly 200 Corvettes will line the 5-foot Trailway surrounding the Seneca Lake Events Center. Corvette enthusiasts are invited to check out the Corvettes and visit with owners from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Visitors will be charged to park at Clute Park and will be able to walk through all the cars on display. Food trucks and other Corvette-themed vendors will be located throughout the Park.
Later that evening, at 6 p.m., Richard Earl will present a keynote address at the Events Center that explores the history and legacy of his grandfather Harley Earl. The one-hour presentation will be a seated and videoed event around the original inspiration, development, and anniversary of the first Corvette, with emphasis on General Motors Corvette engineer Richard Earl. Historic images and video will be presented to attendees at this catered event, for which tickets are still available.
On Sunday, 150 car owners will drive the Historic Glen Circuit. First, though, Corvettes will line Franklin Street, providing a second opportunity to get an up-close view. In preparation for this event, traffic will be diverted from Franklin Street beginning at approximately 11 a.m. until 2:30 p.m.  Shortly before 2 p.m., Corvettes will roar off for a ceremonial lap around the original course, led by Tony Vickio under the supervision of the Schuyler County Sheriff’s Office.
“It truly took a village to bring this festival to Watkins Glen, honoring the legacy of Harley J. Earl and to showcase how the ‘story of the Corvette’ begins at Watkins Glen,” said Craig Bond, parks and recreation superintendent. “Beyond the volunteer committee, I must give a special thank you to the Watkins Montour Rotary Club, the Glen Beacon Theatre, and Watkins Glen Promotions!”
BY Stephanie Specchio
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