Bradenton car show raises $2,000 to help technical institute students

skennedy@bradenton.comFebruary 10, 2014 

BRADENTON -- After days of cloudy skies and rain, the sun came out spectacularly Sunday to grace the second annual Manatee Technical Institute Car Show.

The show attracted more than 80 exhibitors, accompanied by a bevy of wheeled beauties.

Students and faculty from MTI's automotive service technology and auto collision and repair programs teamed with local businesses to host the benefit.

The event raised $2,000 to help send students to the Skills USA National Championships, said school instructor Jose Cestero.

An estimated 1,000 attendees admired the shiny, glistening cars, trucks and motorcycles parked everywhere on the campus lot at 6305 State Road 70.

With music wafting over the relaxed crowd and the scent of hot dogs sizzling on the grill, it was a laid-

back affair.

"I'm taking a trip down memory lane," said Ed Van Stedum, 64, of Bradenton, who was checking out a lovely red 2013 Corvette owned by Brad Gray, 60, also of Bradenton.

"I'm a Corvette fan," added Van Stedum. "I lust in my heart for one, but I've never had one."

Members of the Gulf Coast Corvette Club turned out in force for the event, entering six cars in the show, Gray said.

Buck Spicer, 63, of Bradenton, another entrant, brought his 1971 Mustang Mach 1, painted "Grabber Yellow."

"When I came out of the Army, this was the hot one to have," said Spicer, who came home from the Vietnam War in 1971 and fell in love with the car.

However, he only recently actually bought one, paying about $3,987, he said. He has spent much time and money on restoration, he added.

Decked out in a sunny yellow T-shirt, he was hard to miss, wearing the sartorial equivalent of the car's screaming yellow color.

Another standout was a lush blue, 1937 DeSoto Beauchamp with an original purchase price of $770 and a six-cylinder engine.

Its glam interior included a soda cup holder and original styling that still seems modern today.

Sara Kennedy, Herald reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7031. Follow her on Twitter @sarawrites.

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