By Curtis Carden
The 56th annual Southeastern Autorama will see car enthusiasts flock to the Unicoi County High School track on Saturday, June 4, with gates opening at 7 a.m.
This year’s Autorama will mark a day of remembering the late Midge Ervin, wife of Charlie Ervin. Midge passed away on May 21, 2016.
“We go into this year’s event with heavy hearts with Midge passing away,” Mike McIntosh, with Model A Macs, told The Erwin Record. “She was a member of the club and a respected member of the community. During this year’s Autorama, we’re going to honor Midge Ervin.”
McIntosh spoke fondly of Ervin, who retired from the Unicoi County School System after 30 years of service. She was an active member of the community, McIntosh said, a member of the Blue Ridge Pottery Club and a volunteer with a variety of organizations, including Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child every year.
“Midge and Charlie have been part of the club for 40 to 45 years,” Southeastern Autorama Club President Joey Bailey said. “She’s been there right along with the event, running the gate and helping every way she could. It’s hard to fill the shoes of someone like Midge. We’re going to miss her and Saturday’s event will be dedicated to her.”
The Autorama features vehicles of various makes and models and is used as a way for individuals to come together and socialize, while taking in the sights of automobiles with different stories, according to McIntosh.
“It’s like a big family reunion,” Bailey added. “A lot of the time we have people who come in from the event out of the state and that’s the only time they’ll see each other. It’s a great evening for everybody to come together and see how automobiles have changed over the years.
Saturday’s event will feature a 50-50 drawing, car corral/swap meet, event T-shirts, various food vendors, including a hot dog vendor from Knoxville and a Relay For Life team from Unicoi County, room for additional vendors and awards for car owners.
The Unicoi County High School and East Tennessee State University bluegrass bands will be on hand during the evening. Entertainment is sponsored by Johnson City Ford and Lincoln.
The entry fee for cars to line the track is $15 leading up to the event. For more information on registering, vendor spaces or about the event, contact Bailey via email at [email protected] or call 388-8441. Registration will be available until 1 p.m. on the day of the Autorama.