Location: Dakota County Fairgrounds 4008 220th Street, Farmington, MN
Event Details: Jump-start your summer family-fun events and plan to attend the largest ALL MOPAR car show in the upper Midwest. The 25th Annual Midwest Mopars in the Park National Car Show & Swap Meet will be held on Saturday, May 30 and 31, 2009. This year’s car show is being held at its new location at the Dakota County Fairgrounds in Farmington, Minn. This great location offers a much larger show field, a larger swap area and a huge FREE spectator parking area with free trolley rides to all areas of the fairgrounds.
The two-day car show and swap meet will feature something for every member of the family including a first ever arts and craft show, children’s activities, music, non-stop entertainment, and a full line-up of vendors and special events. Notably Terri Traen from KQRS radio, Mr. Norm and his famous Dodge Darts, and a host of private collector cars will be on hand.
Don’t miss your chance to see hundreds of pristine Mopar show cars of every year make and model that are expected for this two-day car show vying for 33 class awards. Plus you will enjoy seeing several new classifications have been added to the show bill including a new rubber wheel military vehicles (Willys, Chrysler and Dodge) classification.
Special Guests: Diane Sox, the widow of Ronnie Sox, will be attending our 25th Anniversary Midwest Mopars in the Park National Car Show & Swap Meet on May 30 and May 31, 2009 at the Dakota County Fairgrounds in Farmington, MN as a featured guest for our Mopar Tribute along with a host of other Mopar Race History making personalities and many of their cars. Diane will be at the show along with two of Ronnie’s race cars owned and displayed by Clark Rand. Since Ronnie’s untimely passing Diane has worked tirelessly for the Ronnie Sox Foundation raising money to increase awareness and early detection for prostate cancer.
Show Location: The Dakota County Fairgrounds is located in Farmington, MN. Please watch for signage to the fairgrounds as you enter the City of Farmington.
Driving Directions: From the West – I35: Take I35 to CR 70. Take CR 70 4 miles East to Cedar Ave. Turn left (North) approx ¼ mile to Hwy 50 turn right (East) approx 3 miles to Denmark Ave. Turn right on Denmark Ave. approx 3/4 mile (South) to 220th Street. Take 220th Street (left) to fairgrounds.
From the East: Take Hwy 52 to Hwy 50. Take Hwy 50 West approx 8 miles to Hwy 3. Cross Hwy 3 approx ½ mile to fairgrounds.
From the North or South: Take Hwy 3 to Farmington. Take 220th Street (West) ½ mile to fairgrounds.
From the Mall of America (494 & Cedar): Take Cedar (Hwy 77) South to Hwy 50 turn left (East) to Denmark Ave. Turn right on Denmark Ave. approx 3/4 mile (South) to 220th Street. Take 220th Street (left) to fairgrounds.
The Spectator Gate opens at 8 am on Saturday and Sunday
(The Spectator Gate is the first gate from the East across the front of the fairgrounds.)
FREE parking on grounds – please do not park on city streets.
Show Hours: Saturday, May 30 8 am – 1 pm: Car Show Registration 8 am – 6 pm: Car Show, Swap Meet, Craft Show & Show Events
Sunday, May 31 8 am – 10 am: Registration 8 am – 4 pm: Car Show & Events 8 am – 5 pm: Craft Show 8 am – 5 pm: Swap Meet 4 pm: Award Ceremony
Entry Fees: Daily spectator admission is just $10.00 per person at the gate and children under 12 are admitted free. FREE parking is available on the fairgrounds. Parking on city streets is discouraged.
Please use the Spectator Entrance (first entrance East of the Swapper Entrance) when you arrive.
Spectator (Per Day) $10.00 Children under 12 FREE Non-Judged Display $15.00 Pre-Registration $15.00 Registration at Show $25.00 Swap Space (20×20) $80.00 Additional Swap Space (10×20) $30.00 Single Only Swap Space (10×20) $30.00 Car Corral $25.00 Indoor Craft Show Booth (10×20) $20.00
Note: Show and swap entry fees include two admissions for both Saturday and Sunday!
Contacts: This event is hosted by the Midwest Mopars car club. If you have any questions, please call the Show Chairman Gary Richgruber, 952-884-9804 or Advertising Chairman, Marigale Prokop, 651-260-5261.
For Day of Show questions, please call 612-462-0455.
EVENT RECAP: If you’re a Mopar fanatic then you’ve heard of Midwest Mopars in the Park. This year was our 25th anniversary and we pulled out all the stops. You probably know someone that attended the event this year. With over 1000 cars on the show fields and 10,000 people on site this show surpassed most if not all other national Mopar events in size. To help us celebrate our 25th year were “Akron” Arlen Vanke with his 1968 Nationals winning Super Stock 1968 Barracuda as well as Don and Joan Grotheer with their 1968 Super Stock Barracuda – Don’s original is long gone but he was able to assemble this exact duplicate out of spare parts! Diane Sox (drag racing legend Ronnie Sox’s widow) was on hand with two of Ronnie’s cars now owned by Clark and Collene Rand of Springfield, MO. Some may tell you the highlight of the show was seeing Judy Lilly be reunited with her very first Mopar race car, a 1967 Plymouth Belvedere 426 HEMI 4-speed that she won the CDR High Altitude Nationals Super/Stock Eliminator title with in 1967. The car, owned by Jim Drain for the last 19 years and recently (as in right up to the Wednesday before the show when he had not yet fired the Dick Landy built 426 Hemi) and painstakingly restored to the condition she last saw it in some 41 years ago. I can tell that there were many people overcome with emotion including the author.
Some will tell you the swap meet was their highlight and it was the biggest ever – over 300 swap spaces filled. They’ll talk about how friendly the vendors were, that they were knowledgeable and nice to talk to. You’ll hear about the Winged Warriors and Willy’s club filling up the show field. The pig roast Friday night put on by board member Al Meehan at his immaculate airplane hangar before the show as a meet and greet for the Friday volunteers and the racer guests. Others will talk about the Saturday night car cruise with over 40 pristine Mopars that cruised to the after party at the Mopar Ponderosa owned by premier Mopar broker Greg Nelsen. Or the 30+ new Challengers parked together in one row that seemed to go on forever. Or maybe it was the parade of Vipers that arrived as a group and drove through the fairgrounds to their special parking area. And some may say their favorite was the sea of 100+ Mopars in the car corral. There was so much going on it was hard to take it all in!
More highlights from the show -
“I have been reading about Arlen Vanke all my life in magazines. To see him sitting there, I didn’t know what to say. Then to hear his Cuda start up inside the building and drive 30 feet. That was the highlight of the show for me.”
- Scott Bickler
“The highlight for me was getting a call to take some photos. Terry picks me up in the golf cart and we make a short cruise to one of the booths. I’m green when it comes to all things Mopar but I recognize the face as soon as a see him. It’s Norm Kraus from Mr. Norm’s Grand Spaulding Dodge in Chicago. Norm jumps into the back and were off to present the “Mr. Norms Pic” to a husband and wife team that own two really nice, super clean SRT/10 Pickups. As they make the announcement over the PA for the owners to go to their cars, I see the wife running across the show field to greet us and within seconds she’s hugging Norm. My photo wasn’t the best but just being there to witness this couple get the win made my weekend.”
- Steve Benson
“This is the best show we’re been to. The people that are working this show are the nicest we’ve met at any show. They were smiling every time you saw them. We’ll be back.”
- "Akron" Arlen Vanke, Miss Mighty Mopar Judy Lilly, Don Grotheer, and Diane Sox.
“First class event, great new friends…thanks for the opportunity to attend. Please relate to your club members how much we enjoyed your 2009 event!”
- Clark and Collene Rand
The list of highlights is long. I personally spent 10 hours straight taking photos on Saturday and only touched the surface of what was to be seen at the show. We are proud of the show and thankful to the participants, swappers, vendors, spectators and sponsors that help make it all happen