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Toyota, Chevrolet up front for Denver Auto Show opening

Up front at the Colorado Convention Center for the opening of the 2024 Denver Auto Show will be large new-car displays from Toyota and Chevrolet, with smaller space taken by Subaru at one end of the main showroom hall and a ride course for electric vehicles at the other end.

The show will open at noon Thursday and continue to 5 p.m. It will be Senior’s Day, and admission will be half-price for those 65 and older. Regular ticket prices are $16 for adults 13 and older, $8 for children 6-12 and free admission for kids 5 and younger.

The car show will continue from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. both Friday and Saturday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, April 7.

An opening-day highlight will continue Thursday with the annual Colorado Automotive Hall of Fame dinner and Denver Auto Show Opening Gala. The Fame dinner is at 5 p.m., with gala opening on the showroom floor at 7 p.m.

The names of six automotive stalwarts, one dating back to the turn of the 20th century, will be added to the Colorado Automotive Hall of Fame, selections of the Colorado Automobile Dealers Association. They’ll be honored, two of them posthumously, at the Thursday night dinner.

They are John Bowell, an owner of Shortline Automotive; Ed Bozarth, longtime Chevrolet dealer; Steve Taylor, who heads Peak Automotive Group; Mike Feeley, attorney, CADA’s lobbyist for nearly two decades.
Honored posthumously will be Art Stapp, who with his father, Robert, founded in 1973 Longmont Toyota, now known as Stapp Interstate Toyota at Frederick, and Thomas Botterill, who sold cars in Denver beginning in 1901, was first president of the Denver Automobile Dealers Assocition and a leading Hudson dealer.

Interestingly, at the first Denver auto show, way back in 1902, among 18 makes were steam-powered, electric-driven and internal-combustion, gasoline-powered automobiles.

Today, more than 120 years later, only the “steamers” are missing; sharing space on the showroom floor are the best-looking of long-favored internal-combustion-engined cars and trucks, dozens of new electric models, an assortment of plug-in hybrids and the simpler gas-electric hybrids.

In 1901, a year before Denver’s first car show, William B. Felker and Charles Yont drove a Locomobile Steamer to the summit of Pikes Peak. Of the ‘drive’ back down, Felker said, “Sometimes the machine would spin around on two wheels, sometimes we would lurch threateningly, but we always righted ourselves.”

“I am sure no one will ever do that again,” said Anna Felker, William’s wife. Little did she know that driving Pikes Peak would over the years become a challenge for motorists and race drivers from around the world.

Resultant publicity from that climb fueled impetus for Denver’s display in 1902, which is considered the third oldest car show in the country.

Happy Easter, my friends.
Contact Bud Wells at
budwellscars@comcast.net

The news and editorial staffs of The Denver Post had no role in this post’s preparation.

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