The third annual Founders Day festival will roll into the downtown area this weekend, offering family fun, classic wheels and the return of an Auburn landmark.
The full-day event, scheduled for Aug. 13, offers plenty of eye candy for the gear head in the family with this year’s theme — History on Wheels.
Hundreds of antique cars, motorcycles and trucks from local car clubs will take part in the Founders Day car show, sponsored by the Finger Lakes Antique Automobile Association with help from the Prison City Ramblers.
Car club organizer Jack Hardy said participating antique vehicles will be parked along both sides of the Genesee Street, stretching from the show stage in front of Silbert Optical to the Cayuga County Office Building.
A motorcycle show will be stationed along State Street between Dill and Genesee streets, a car-themed flea market will be on Dill Street and Loop Road and antique cars for sale will be displayed on William Street and Loop Road.
Registration for the show begins at 9 a.m. and judging will begin at noon. After expenses, all money collected by the show will be donated to the Cayuga County Meals on Wheels program.
If art is more your fancy, two dozen regional artists will have their works on display on Exchange Street Mall.
Jesse Kline, assistant director of the Downtown Auburn BID, said the featured artists working in various media will have booths set up to showcase and sell their artwork.
Starting at 11 a.m., music for the celebration will be provided by live acts and on-site radio broadcasts.
Kline said the St. Alphonsus Choir will kick off the festivities by singing the National Anthem and radio stations Hot Country WFLK and the WALL will be on hand.
All afternoon on Genesee Street, activities will keep the kids busy, from face painting near the Cayuga County Office Building to Rick Martinez’s popular pirate character Captain Jack.
The Paranormal Investigators of CNY will also host a booth and hold demonstrations of some of their ghost detecting equipment.
Kline said a number of local eateries will provide fuel to keep the family going, including Mesa Grande, Parker’s Grille, Swaby’s Tavern and Bambino’s Bistro.
After dark, an old friend of the Auburn skyline will make a triumphant return, as Auburn Mayor Michael Quill and representatives from Genesee Brewery throw the switch to light the Genesee Beer sign atop the Speno Music building.
Dark for more than 40 years, the Rochester-based brewery recently decided to outfit the 20-foot-tall sign with LED lights that will bring the sign back to its former glory.
A street party leading up to the countdown will begin at 7 p.m. in the Market Street park.
Local musicians That 70s Band will play the party and Tinker’s Guild will serve the gamut of Genesee beers, with proceeds benefiting Majorpalooza. Local bars too numerous to mention will also be featuring specials on the branded beer.
Kline said the official countdown to the relighting of the sign will begin at 9 p.m.