Despite a busy Saturday full of fun car stuff including MN C&C, the Walleye 1000, and the Kannonball Fun Charity Rally, I couldn’t think of a better way to unwind than by meandering around Excelsior Commons looking at more cars. The 4th annual 10,000 Lakes Concours d’Elegance is hosted on the serene shores of Lake Minnetonka in the heart of Excelsior, MN and invites a hand-picked selection of rare vintage cars, motorcycles, and boats.
Although I’m not usually the biggest fan of big, luxurious American cars from the 1930’s and ’40s, I couldn’t help but appreciate the rare metal, wood, and leather in front of me. The simple details of the 1911 LeZebre Runabout, with its fringed awning hanging delicately above its sole seat, could keep one fascinated for hours. Or the decadent curves and creases making up the effortlessly cool bodywork of a 1956 Continental Mark II. Then there was the bright red pontoon fenders and sensual, wrap-around grille of a 1936 Cord 810 Sportsman sitting mere feet from the lakeshore as gentle waves lapped the shore behind it. For obvious reasons, the title of “Best-In-Show” was bestowed upon a stunning Jaguar Mark V Drophead Coupe, a car that birthed many of the design details we still see gracing the sheetmetal of modern vehicles from the legendary British brand.
These are vessels from a bygone era, largely forgotten until their caretakers carefully ease them out of their cosy garages or immaculate warehouses. The phrase “they don’t make ’em like this anymore” kept echoing through my head as I stared at the delicate curves, glistening chrome, and art deco design cues. Thankfully, the 10,000 Lakes Concours d’Elegance brings rolling (or floating) artwork like this to the masses in a laid back and casual environment.