HOT AUGUST NIGHTS 2017 – DAY 1: THE PEPPERMILL
We drove in from NorCal on Tuesday, having taken “the long way”, at around 4:00 pm. We checked into the Peppermill Resort & Casino, settled in, got a bite, then hit the car show and cruise out in their parking lot. By this time, it was dusk, it was still nice and warm with a slight breeze, so very comfortable to enjoy the 200-or-so cars on display. Some were cruising through the parking lot, out onto the street, them back into the parking lot in a loop that they call “The Mill Mile”. Lots of engine revving for good effect. I took tons of pictures of American muscle cars for this site, that came out surprisingly well considering the low light. And I got plenty of video of all the action, and posted it on our YouTube Channel, on our Facebook Page, and on our own Car Videos-page. Check them out here also:
HOT AUGUST NIGHTS 2017 – DAY 2: THE PEPPERMILL
There were so many gorgeous cars at the Peppermill’s car show that I had to come back and shoot again in the morning light. I got out there before the crowds started which allowed me to get some great shots of the cars, just the way I wanted them. Don’t get me wrong, I like the folks who come to car shows, but crowds of people can make it very difficult to get good pictures of cars. I got out there early and so had the place pretty much to myself, me and all those gorgeous cars. By the time lots of people showed up a few hours later, I was just finishing up, and just as it was warming up considerably. I left and got some lunch. Good thing I got in there early, because within an hour it clouded over, then started to sprinkle, then started to all-out rain, then started to hail! In the Nevada desert in August! I can only imagine what some of those convertible owners were doing right about then. I had been waiting for a family member to show up, and that arrived in the late afternoon in the middle of the rain, thunder and hail storm. It soon cleared, however most of the cars had been either put away or buttoned up. It was certainly the same way at the other venues, so we rested up that evening for what was sure to be a hectic week at Hot August Nights 2017. Below are 2 versions of the video we did on the Peppermill’s Car Show from Day 2:
HOT AUGUST NIGHTS 2017 – DAY 3: THE ATLANTIS
It’s now Thursday, and several more parties have shown up to join us at Hot August Nights 2017. I plan a full day of car stuff. We start out just a short drive from the Peppermill at the Atlantis Resort & Casino where they’re hosting a huge car show & cruise of their own. I tour the cars, take tons of pictures of some amazing American muscle cars, and I make a video of all the action. Check them out:
HOT AUGUST NIGHTS 2017 – DAY 3: THE GRAND SIERRA
Next up was the Grand Sierra, formerly the MGM Grand. They have the biggest car show in all of Hot August Nights (if you don’t count the auction). 100s & 100s of incredible muscle cars and I took pictures of all the good ones, at least those whose hoods were down (and some where they weren’t). It was hot, but it was worth it. Check out the video:
HOT AUGUST NIGHTS 2017 – DAY 3: JOHNNY RIVERS LIVE
After hours in the hot sun at the Grand Sierra, Johnny Rivers was set to play on the outdoor stage at 8:15 pm. He had a string of hits in the1960s including “Secret Agent Man” and “Poor Side of Town”. He put on a great show to an adoring crowd, mostly aging baby boomers like myself. It was a good concert, a little slow at times as John did a few acoustic numbers and some copy tunes. But he covered all his bases and it was a great concert overall. Below is a video a made of a couple of my favorite songs, “Poor Side of Town” and “Summer Rain”. Hope you like it:
HOT AUGUST NIGHTS 2017 – DAY 4: MAG AUCTION
In the past, Barrett-jackson has conducted the classic car auctions at Hot August Nights, always held at the Reno/Sparks Convention Center. But for the past two years MAG Auctions (Motorsports Auction Group) has been putting on the show and doing a bang-up job of it. My Day 4 is Friday, August 11 and I spend my morning at the MAG Auction at the convention center. Of course it’s a huge, well-lit building, and its chock full of cars. Hundreds and hundreds of them in neat rows. Unfortunately, most have their hoods open, which means that other than a few interior shots and possibly some engine shots, assuming the engine and engine bay are stock, I can’t use any exterior shots if the hood is up. Do I ever make exceptions? Yes, you’ll see them on my site from time to time, only because I was so desperate for a set of photos of a car I didn’t have otherwise. But there are still a few hundred cars with hoods that are closed, and I go systematically through the multitude of gorgeous classic cars, smiling the whole way. All these car pictures by the way, these and the others taken at different venues, are what I am using to build out my online index of American muscle cars, which is our corporate mission. So you’ll be seeing lots of new car pics in the very near future throughout my site. So from there I went to watch the auction, and saw several great classic cars go down, sold in auction, with lots of noise and excitement. Catch it all on the video we just finished:
HOT AUGUST NIGHTS 2017 – DAY 4: CRUISE NIGHT
Every year, the City of Reno graciously shuts down the entire center of town so that a bunch of crazies can cruise their cars all night long, all week long, for Hot August Nights. We spent our Friday night watching them, taking some great pictures, and a video of all the action.
HOT AUGUST NIGHTS 2017- DAY 5: DOWNTOWN RENO CAR SHOW & CRUISE
After a full week, I’d hit most of the high points I wanted to cover, and while I’d been here the just a few hours ago at Cruise Night, I hadn’t been Downtown during the day to check out the cars on display there. They close down the entire Downtown District every year, along with side streets, and it’s lined with old cars with old cars cruising up and down the streets, and gobs of lookers. Lots of great cars, some really interesting ones in some cases, and a few surprises. Check out the video below to get it first-hand (well, not quite first hand).
HOT AUGUST NIGHTS – DAY 5: BACK AT THE PEPPERMILL
So, after a long day out in the hot sun photographing all the cars and cruising Downtown, I returned to the Peppermill for some rest and nourishment. After which it was back out to take more pictures of cars and cruising, this time back in the parking lot of the Peppermill. There were a few more cars out there that I hadn’t spotted before, and some that were finally closed up (hoods, trunks, and/or doors closed). It’s a real problem for me when they’re not. Great if I’m doing interior or engine shots, but terrible for exterior shots. If I’m lucky, the owner is close by and I can get him to give me access. But I never touch anyone’s car without their permission, so if the hood is open, I often won’t take pictures of that car. It’s really too bad, too, because some are really neat cars that I need for my website. And sometimes, if it hurts too badly to walk away, I’ll take the pictures anyway and sometimes even use them. Oh well. So tonight, as the sun was setting, it cooled to a nice temperature with a slight breeze, very comfortable. I went to work combing the place for cars I hadn’t shot before, and taking lots of great cruise video. Check out the videos below:
WE HAD A BLAST AT HOT AUGUST NIGHTS 2017
All in all, Hot August Nights 2017 was an absolute blast for me. Everything went extremely well on my end, and the events, the cars, the people, and the weather (mostly) all worked out perfectly. I met up with my little group and while we were together, we had a wonderful time. Few people can keep up with me at a car show, so we got split up at times. But all went well. We had some excellent meals while we were in Reno also, which is always a good thing, and fast becoming a Reno tradition. I had filet mignon 2 days in a row! I needed it, you burn up a lot of energy running from car to car with a camera in the hot sun. My wife went to the spa the the Peppermill where we stayed, and got the full treatment, so she was happy. Besides the MAG Auction, there wasn’t a single thing I attended that cost anything. All the good stuff is free! It’s one helluva entertainment bargain, actually. If you like cars. If you don’t, stay home. You won’t get it.
ALREADY LOOKING FORWARD TO HOT AUGUST NIGHTS 2018
This trip has become a tradition with me, mostly due to this website, but also because I really dig classic car events like this. Like the Goodguys, Hot August Nights is a celebration of American cars at their zenith. And yet, they’re normal cars that we all grew up with, cars that normal people can still own. Compare that to the rarified air of say Monterey Car Week where you need some mega-million-dollar one-off handbuilt Bugatti from the 1930s to get anyone’s attention. Not my kind of cars, and not my kind of car folk. So, next year I will be back, and every year after. This year, several members of my family met us up there and we ran around together (mostly on Day 3 & 4, above) and had a great time. I’m actually thinking this would be a great venue to host a reunion of all my high school buddies, next year. We’ll see…either way, I’ll be there though. And if you want to attend, which I highly recommend, please visit the official website of Hot August Nights, www.hotaugustnights.net for all the details on next year’s event. See you there.