On Friday, August 7 of this year’s La Feria de las Flores (Festival of Flowers) was the Classic Car Parade (Desfile de Autos Clasicos).
The theme for the car parade this year was “Heritage on Wheels.” The parade in one sense is like a traveling museum of old cars.
The parade is a very popular event every year and it is also family friendly so you will see many families with little kids.
Since the parade route is lengthy at about 22 kilometers you can walk along the route to find a less busy spot to get good views and enable taking better photos.
It is normally the busiest near the metro stations like the Poblado or Industriales.
I normally go to the Industriales station. This year, I walked from there and found a spot in front of the Bancolombia headquarters building under some trees that wasn’t very busy.
Plenty of vendors will be walking around selling cold beers, water, sodas, ice cream, empanadas and other snacks, plus hats and sunglasses, which aren’t a bad idea given the strength of the sun.
The vehicles in the Medellín car parade come from several cities in Colombia. Besides Medellín, I saw several from Bogotá, Cali, and Cartagena.
The parade this year limited the number of vehicles to 200 in the old and classic categories. There reportedly was at least 260 total vehicles participating in the parade the year before.
About 40 percent of the cars in this year’s parade were in the parade for the first time and had not been in a previous parade. Many of the drivers and passengers in the vehicles in the parade are also dressed in period costumes.
Estimates are that over 1 million people viewed the Classic Car Parade in Medellín this year.
The vehicles in the parade fall in several categories, including:
- Old vehicles – cars which are at least 35 years old and retain original specifications with the factory layout and operation.
- Classic vehicles – cars which are at least 50 years old and also retain their original features and specifications with factory layout and operation.
- Street rod vehicles – cars which are at least 35 years old and retain the completely original exterior and retain all its accessories, emblems, mirrors, bevels, Inside parts and mechanicals can change but these should not be noticeable from the outside.
- Hot rod vehicles – cars that were completely changed in the mechanics, suspension and body, especially finishes such as paint and upholstery are very different from the original There is a limit of 25 cars in this category that are selected by a committee.
- Vehicles produced, assembled or distributed in Colombia – cars included in this category must be at least 35 years old and at least 95 percent original in its mechanical and aesthetic parts (including painting).
There is also a special category for military Jeeps and Volkswagons.
For those interested in participating in the Classic Car Parade, a fee must be paid to the Museo del Transporte Fundación.
From April 1 to June 1 this year, the fee was 150,000 pesos ($50). This fee increased up to a maximum of 500,000 pesos ($170) if paid between July 2 to July 15.
The vehicle must also be accepted by a technical committee and a copy of the vehicle registration must be provided.
Some of the money collected for the parade was donated to the Santiago Children’s Heart Foundation.