When you put aside your biases and preferences for one make or model and see the greater car community as a group of people who simply enjoy their cars, you end up with an expansive group of fundamentally similar enthusiasts. Car events are either tailored to one style, make, country of origin, or even specific model, with few exceptions. One such worldwide gathering of car enthusiasts who set aside all their differences to come together early in the morning is Cars and Coffee. In one form or another, Cars and Coffee events take place in nearly every major city on Saturday or Sunday mornings almost year-round, weather permitting. Here in North East Ohio, we have the NEO C&C, who graciously partner with us here at ECS Tuning, to put on these wonderful shows. Last weekend, NEO C&C hosted their final show of the season at our facility in Wadsworth, Ohio, which turned out an incredible group of wonderfully diverse cars and owners who enjoyed coffee, donuts, giveaways, and more at our little shop.
Cars and Coffee is an event that is all-inclusive but almost exclusively draws the most dedicated enthusiasts. Since participation requires that you wake up with the birds, or earlier depending on your drive, you have to want to be there. This brings out the purest individuals in the car community who come out early in the morning, not for the opportunity to take home a trophy or show off, but to enjoy driving their car with others who love the same hobby they do.
These shows are some of the only that makes no distinction between the hypercars, priceless classics, and complete hoopties built for fun in your home garage. The lack of barriers means you can see a Noble M12 parked next to a burned up VW Thing held together with rust and Vaseline. Everyone at Cars and Coffee is an equal, regardless of what you drive or how much it costs to own. Everyone attends Cars and Coffee to appreciate the love of cars, the love of driving, and of course, the love of caffeine.
Much like the coffee shops of England in the 17th century where a commoner need not give up his seat to a nobleman, Cars and Coffee is an event that offers all enthusiasts equality and an opportunity to speak with owners of cars you may have never before seen in person. It also allows others the chance to pull up in their home-built pride and joy to provide excitement and amusement to all those in attendance and show their hard work to eager hobbyists.
Cars and Coffee is, in this way, a source of inspiration. With no focus on awards, recognition, or competition, you can appreciate everything. If you enjoy European cars, you may not encounter too many off-road builds or domestics other than at an event like Cars and Coffee where all are welcome. Inversely, the exposure of muscle car enthusiasts to their overseas rivals provide endless entertainment as they experience a totally unfamiliar world of eccentrics from the funky Europeans. This is what makes Cars and Coffee such a wonderful learning experience and a way to discover new interests within the hobby we all share.
Thanks to groups like NEO Cars and Coffee, we are all able to share the same parking lot and enjoy an assortment of cars from all eras, all makes, and all utilities. From the all-out track builds, beautifully restored domestic classics, and beefed-up JDM tuners, to project cars, low-production exotics, and even just the wild and crazy ‘because I can’ build, Cars and Coffee gives us a little bit of everything. We thoroughly enjoy opening our doors to the enthusiasts who, like us, wake up and live their hobby every day and aren’t afraid to make a drive on their day off to spend time talking cars over a hot cup of coffee in the midst of every slice of the automotive enthusiast world.