It’s easy to say that things went well at all events surrounding The 2021 Amelia Island Concours, but we have to point out that a 800-pound Gorilla is currently leaving the room. The past 15 months have been difficult for most all of us, and finding a new normal in business and personal life has been a challenge.
The Amelia Island Concours, held in March of 2020, was, for many of us the final “Official” event before the Pandemic hit our shores. Because of that, the reset date of the 2021 Amelia Island Concours—moved back from March to May—became the reset button to many, including myself.
If there was one common thread, one common sentiment, it could be summed up in one sentence, “Damn, it is great to get out and meet, see, and associate with friends old and new.” Vaccinations, new CDC guidelines, and the fact that many events and meetups were outdoors made greeting people, seeing cars, and sharing some well-needed laughs possible.
As you have undoubtedly read elsewhere, both the Bonhams auction, held the Thursday before the concours, and the RM Sotheby’s sale, held on-site at the Ritz Carlton which also serves as the concours host hotel, had fantastic sell-through rates of 90 percent and above. But what was really memorable here was the stuff we perhaps took for granted about car events before the pandemic—abundant sunshine, cars, and people in attendance. Dozens of other events, ranging from small parties to the Porsche Werks Reunion, were held in the immediate area. The Saturday Cars and Coffee event held in conjunction with the Concours was back, as was the always fun Concours D’Lemons.
As it should be, the Amelia Concours itself was again the star. The number count on cars in attendance was purposefully lower than in previous years, and that allowed for better viewing of many cars. The crowds were plentiful, the mood joyful, and the cars fantastic.
The “official” concours reset button has been pushed, and for many, a season of despair and questions has been replaced with our new normal. I’ve witnessed that new normal, and I can tell you things are looking good.
As always, Bill Warner & his 750 volunteers pulled off another fantastic Amelia Island Concours. This year I got a better inside sense of what it takes behind the scenes to pull off big events like this. A staggering amount of work. A big THANK YOU to everyone who helped put this show on for all of us to enjoy!