It's December, and while many folks are busy doing their holiday shopping and shipping, classic car collectors need to be planning their post-holiday travel schedules.
No, they're not going over the river and through the woods to visit Grandmother's house. They're booking trips to Florida, Nevada and Arizona to bid on collector vehicles.
Here's where the auction action is happening, so make your travel plans:
January 6-8 -- David Rupp's 18th annual The Original Ft. Lauderdale Beach classic vehicle auction, in the War Memorial Auditorium.
January 12-14 -- Auctions America by RM's inaugural Las Vegas Premier Vintage Motorcycle Auction, at the Rio casino/resort.
January 12-14 -- MidAmerica Auctions' 21st annual Las Vegas Auction, at South Point casino/exhibit hall.
January 13-15 -- GRG auction, at the Scottsdale International Auto Museum.
January 14-15 -- Motoexotica's second annual Phoenix Classic & Exotic car auction, at Dealers Auto Auction of the Southwest in Phoenix.
January 15-22 -- Barrett-Jackson Auction Company's 41st annual Scottsdale auction and automotive lifestyle extravaganza, at WestWorld.
January 18-22 -- Russo and Steele Collector Automobile Auction's annual Scottsdale auction, at the Loop 101 and Scottsdale Road.
January 19-20 -- RM Auctions annual Arizona auction, at the Biltmore resort in Phoenix.
January 20-21 -- Gooding & Company's Scottsdale Auction, at the Scottsdale Fashion Square.
January 20-21 -- Silver Auction's Fort McDowell Arizona Auction, at the Fort McDowell casino at Fountain Hills, Arizona.
January 24-29 -- Mecum Auctions launches its 25th anniversary celebration with its annual Kissimmee Auction, at Osceola Heritage Park.
A lump of Cole for Christmas?
In the spring of 2009, I wrote a feature story for the Detroit News' Joyrides website (www.detroitnews.com/joyrides) about a gathering of Cole cars at the Orphan car show in Ypsilanti, Michigan.
Between 1909 and 1925, Joseph Jarrett Cole produced some 40,000 cars. Of the 75 Coles known to remain, four were at that Orphan show.
Recently, I received an email from a couple in Australia who have found a Cole for sale Down Under in in Queensland.
"The ‘Cole' name was not familiar to me," my new Aussie friends wrote. "When I started researching the Cole name, I came across your article on Cole and I thought to myself that this car should be in a USA collection.
"I am retired and at 77 years old I have little to do these days but, after some consideration as to the time it takes to do a restoration [he included photos in the email of the 1923 Jewett he'd restored], it was then that I decided that this project would be more likely to be completed by someone more likely to live to see it completed. Even so, I may still be interested in buying the car, as an investment myself, if there is no U.S. response.
"I would be prepared to assist any prospective U.S. buyer in doing some groundwork in finding out more about crating and shipping etc, to the buyer's location. I have no connection to the seller and I would only accept, 'out of pocket traveling expenses etc', if the buyer wished me to act in this matter for them."
If anyone's interested, contact me and I'll put you in touch with the Aussies.
Ultimate Christmas presents at British auction
British auction house Coys stages its True Greats auction December 7 in London, where it will offer 36 cars, including an Aston Martin DB5 formerly owned by George Harrison, a Cord 810 Phaeton owned by Jimmy Page of the Yardbirds and Led Zeppelin and later by actor Duncan Bannatyyne, and a Mercedes Benz 300 SL Roadster stored in an Edinburgh garage for the last 23 years.
"There are some extremely interesting cars on offer which could be the ultimate Christmas present," said Coys managing director Chris Routledge.
Got an old car? Want $164?
Good friend and long-time publicist Doug Stokes sends word that a major motion picture studio is looking for 50 cars -- 1969 or older vehicles -- for a scene in a parking lot in San Pedro, California.
The feature film shoot takes place Saturday, December 10. If you have a 1969 or earlier car -- cars only, no trucks, and no black or white cars, for that matter -- would like to make $164 for the day for putting it on the big screen, email email@example.com and dqc (aka Dave Duganne) will supply the rest of specifics. You email probably should include the make, model and year of your vehicle.
Click here for event calendar.
Click here for more articles by Larry Edsall.