LIVERPOOL, N.Y. (WSYR-TV)– Even though the Syracuse Nationals don’t officially start until Friday, the festivities have already begun.
Hundreds of cars and people checked in to the Holiday Inn on Electronics Pkwy for the big weekend, the parking lot serving as a pre-car show.
For many, this event is a family tradition, especially for Syracuse native Joe Donovan who’s been going to the Syracuse Nationals since he was 7 years old and it all started with his family’s 1957 Thunderbird.
The car has been in the family for the last 53 years. He said he considers the car to be a family member and being back at the Nationals with his family and friends means everything to him.
“I love it, I mean there’s nothing more to me, I’m a family guy and I love family, to be with my parents around these cars all the time that’s what it’s about family and friends can’t get better than this,” Donovan said.
People from across the country also came out for the Syracuse Nationals including Bill Cote from Lakeview, Massachusetts. He’s been coming to the Nationals for about 10 years now to show off his 1967 Chevrolet.
He’s been working on cars since he was 16 years old and he said this car is something he’s always wanted.
“You know the local shows you get 50 cars whatever but this is 8,000 cars,” Cote said. “It’s a lot to look at the vendors, you get good ideas if you’re building another car you can talk to the vendors and say hey how’s your product going to benefit me by using it and you get good information by the vendors themselves.”
The Syracuse Nationals runs from Friday, July 16 through Sunday, July 18 at the NYS Fairgrounds.